CommunityPam's House Blend

Ford's now between a rock and a hard place

It sounds like it was a fruitful, honest two-hour meeting with gay leaders today. Ford plans to announce its decision in the next day or so on whether it will remain bed buddies with the American Family Association, or it will listen to common sense? We’ll see. I’m sure the wild-eyed Wildmon followers are ringing Ford execs off the hook and re-dangling the boycott in their faces. (AP):

Gay and lesbian organizations asked Ford Motor Co. on Monday to reinstate advertising for its luxury Jaguar and Land Rover brands in gay publications and to distance itself from an anti-gay group which had boycotted the automaker’s vehicles.

Ford officials met with leaders of the Human Rights Campaign, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and other organizations in Washington, D.C., after the automaker said last week its luxury brands would no longer advertise in gay publications.

The move came nearly a week after the Tupelo, Miss.-based American Family Association canceled its boycott of Ford vehicles, which started in May amid criticism that the nation’s No. 2 automaker was too gay-friendly.

Joe Solmonese, president of the Human Rights Campaign, said Ford was asked to “make a very strong statement” disassociating itself from the AFA while reinstating the Jaguar and Land Rover advertising in the gay press.

Get this part of the article. It sounds like something out of the 50s and 60s, when TV stations were worried about variety shows that had black performers interacting with white performers and the networks were concerned about “Southern sensibilities.”

Ford Chairman and CEO Bill Ford said in a statement, “we value all people — regardless of their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation and cultural or physical differences.”

Ford told gay rights leaders that it had not made any deal with the AFA to end the automaker’s advertising of Jaguar and Land Rover in gay media, the groups said.

They said they felt a need to respond to their Southern dealers and their Southern dealers were very concerned about a boycott,” Solmonese said.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding