The United Church of Christ, a mainstream Christian denomination with 1.6 million members in the United States, has launched a new ad campaign to emphasize its inclusive nature. But the CBS and NBC televisions networks are declining to air the UCC’s television ad (see also CNN)because they say the ad is ‘too controversial.’
CBS’ written response to the the UCC said in part:
Because this commercial touches on the exclusion of gay couples and other minority groups by other individuals and organizations,” reads an explanation from CBS, “and the fact the Executive Branch has recently proposed a Constitutional Amendment to define marriage as a union between a man and a woman, this spot is unacceptable for broadcast on the [CBS and UPN] networks.
As far as I can tell (I haven’t yet seen the ad, only read descriptions of it), the UCC’s television ad doesn’t say anything about gay and lesbian couples, only that everyone, including gays and lesbians, are welcome in their church. Yet, CBS and NBC view the ad in the context of the current civil debate over gay marriage. This is not a good sign of the direction our society is going in.