I live just off Hollywood Boulevard in Los Feliz, so I get exposed to a lot of pretty silly billboards. Usually they advertise Ralph’s supermarkets (whose current ad campaign is worth a blog post of its own) or whatever movie is currently in theaters. (in 2006 I had to see Gerard Butler yelling THIS IS SPARTA for about six weeks straight every time I left my home). But recently AHF Pharmacy put up an ad that takes the cake. It depicts a cute little girl being cuddled by her dads, which overall is pretty unremarkable.
But here’s the catch: One of her dads (the one holding her) seems like a sweet guy, but the other is clearly waiting for the right moment to cut the brake line on the family Passat and start counting insurance money. Don’t stare too deeply into his eyes; you may fall in love with him yourself, and before you know it you’ll be hip-deep in gambling arrears and he’s skipped town with all your credit cards and a velvet sack full of your mother’s jewelry. Because, dammit, she fell for him too.
“But Kevin,” you’re saying. “AHF is a globally-recognized advocate for people with AIDS and HIV. They provide low- and no-cost doctor visits and medicine to tens out thousands of people around the world while posting no profits. Hell, the billboard itself says ‘People Before Profit.’ What kind of a lowlife are you, targeting one of the last bastions of decency in the American health care system for an easy laugh?”
Well, first of all: I’m glad you laughed. Second: The fact that I fully support AHF’s mission is the very reason I’m writing this. Because, seriously, look at that ad: It’s obviously two separate image-library pictures Photoshopped together, probably called “Happy Dad With Daughter” and “Smiling Date Rape Enthusiast.” (Don’t believe me? Check out Creepy Dad’s left hand. Elbows don’t work that way, unless you’re some sort of multi-jointed cacodemon) I want AHF to be able to afford models for their advertisements, so that straight folks don’t start thinking every gay marriage includes some strong Hitchcockian subtext.
So throw AHF some business. Get your prescriptions filled at their pharmacies. Do some shopping at Out of the Closet. Buy a ticket to a movie starring Blair Underwood. But do what you can, today. Future pictorial representations of gay families depend on it.
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