After complaints from One Million Moms, part of the Christian-right American Family Association, the Hallmark Channel pulled a series of ads featuring a pair of lesbian brides kissing for the wedding planning and registry site Zola. The decision to remove the ads has sparked backlash of its own, and now gay country singer Chely Wright is expressing her deep disappointment in the channel, particularly considering the fact that she recently worked for them.
Hey @hallmarkchannel, I can see that you’re online now... tweeting about your movies, but no one from @hallmarkchannel has replied to the voluminous number of tweets (including mine) about your pulling the beautiful @Zola commercial which includes a kiss between two women in love https://t.co/i6r6MMdpZ0— Chely Wright (@chelywright) December 15, 2019
It is my sincere hope that @hallmarkchannel will reconsider their decision and that they’ll restore the relationship with @Zola and run the heck out of the commercials during this very high-viewership holiday time.— Chely Wright (@chelywright) December 15, 2019
This is an important moment for #LGBTQ viewers and their allies
You can change your mind, @hallmarkchannel and you’d solidify an incredibly loyal demographic. #LGBT viewers and our allies are your neighbors, your doctors, your teachers, your police officers...— Chely Wright (@chelywright) December 15, 2019
and your songwriters.
Co-Writer of a song currently on your network
The ads that were removed from the channel showed numerous configurations of couples kissing. A spokesperson for the channel told the New York Times that the “public displays of affection” were in violation of the channel’s policies, but did not provide comment on why the channel allowed for advertisements featuring heterosexual couples kissing.
One Million Moms wrote on their campaign page, “Parents need to know they could now come face to face with the LGBT agenda when they sit down to watch the Hallmark Channel,” adding, “One Million Moms is asking Hallmark to stay true to its family-friendly roots that so many families have grown to love, and to keep sex and sexual content — including the promotion of homosexuality — out of its programming.”
Wright’s response is different in tone than the #BoycottHallmark hashtag which began trending shortly after the ad take down. Instead, the “Shut Up and Drive” singer is asking for the ads to be reconsidered saying that Hallmark could “solidify an incredibly loyal demographic.”
Wright received many comments on her tweets, most of them words of encouragement: “You rock, Chely!” one user wrote, “Thank you for speaking out Chely. I hope more artists do,” wrote another.
So far, Hallmark has not replied to Wright’s messages, nor have they replied to messages from other high-profile people in the LGBTQ community who have also expressed their outrage.
Bobby Berk from Queer Eye tweeted at the channel as well, writing, “what old homophobic bigot you got running things over there?”
Ellen DeGeneres also tweeted her outrage.
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