Alex Blaze

New public ad campaign addresses homophobia against black gay men

Filed By Alex Blaze | October 05, 2010 10:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Media
Tags: black, gay men's health, i love my boo, latino, love, men, New York, subway

I post a lot about messages that take LGBT acceptance to the public sphere and bring it to people who otherwise wouldn't hear our incessant nattering because that's a lot more productive than speaking to people within in the realm of politics or cordoning off ourselves into safe little bubbles and fearing the outside world. So it's great that Gay Men's Health Crisis has started a campaign to address homophobia directed at gay men of color. These ads will appear in 1000 NYC subway cars and 150 stations.

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More ads and some local reactions after the jump.

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Here are some people's reactions on a local news site:

First of all Thank You all at NY1 for bringing this to your show. Maybe all the people who feel uncomfortable and against these ads might be, unfortunately, more comfortable seeing two men of color fighting or killing each other. That's probably what they see more than when two men are loving each other.

I have to admit, I cringe when I see two men kissing. I am very liberal person and believe that people have the right to the purist of happiness. But I am also a product of human conditioning. Taught since I was able to walk, that a man with men is somehow wrong, deviant, and against the laws of nature. These "I love my boo" posters may make a lot of people uncomfortable, but they are a step forward reversing all the bigotry that has been en-grained into our psyche.

It's interesting how many people called the ads "extremely sexual," which they're clearly not.

Although the intrinsic message may be a good one, the way the ads have been put together could have been much more tasteful. Is the gay community trying to portray a better image for itself or trying to stoop down to the inappropriate sexual culture that engulfs our society?

I believe that there must be a greater respect for all people independent of age, gender, or sexual orientation but there is a way to convey this positive image in a better light.

These ads are ridiculous!! No advertisements with extremely sexual or violent undertones. We have kids on the train and we want to teach them appropriation. I don't think any PDA on the train is acceptable. Please these ads enhance stereotypes. My BOO gets a long strong BOOOOOOOOOOO.

As always, it's all about the children. If this is the way straight people are raising LGBT kids, no wonder so many of them grow up with no self-esteem:

I do not understand, nor do I see a reason to want posters of young, black and hispanic males hugging and kissing on the train for all to see, especially children who don't have the same understanding of homosexuality as adults do. What is this thing about imposing homosexuality on little children and saying that its for the good for all to see????

Dont believe its right to put pictures of gay men on the subways.i dont need my nephews thinking its ok to date men or ask questions about it,im a catholic and I dont believe in gay marriage.its wrong-

What people do behind closed doors is their business.... But as a mother I don't want to be on the train with my children in they end up seeing that add...why should it be shoved down our throats.. As for bulling these kids need to get thicker skin as a child we were all bullied and teased in school it's a part if growing up...

Of course there's the "majority is the victim" complainer who shows up. Nope, I've never seen any heterosexuality in an ad before!

If ads promoting a heterosexual lifestyle were placed there would be hell to pay. Promoting individualism, self expression and confidence is the way to go. Focusing on gay or not misses the point and begs for vandalism of these ads.


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Kudos to GMHC! This campaign is excellent, and the negative reactions merely testify to how badly it is needed.

When I first came out, two men or two women kissing looking strange even to me. Get used to it, I did.

I believe we must insist that parents do not have a right to bring up their children in a world free of gay images, just as they do not have a right to a world free of black images, Latino images, female images, images from various faiths, images of people with disabilities, images from different countries, etc. This notion that being gay is unspeakable has got to be rejected, pure and simple. It is not difficult to be age-appropriate; young children only need simple explanations, such as "Most men like women, but a few men like other men."

Of course, some will resist the message simply because it makes them uncomfortable. "Don't force that off on me!" is a reaction I have to many Republican campaign ads. So far, I have not won my right to live in an America free of the Republican Party and its many offensive messages. I definitely prefer that Republican ads not be allowed on the buses and subways, but there is this sometimes inconvenient paragraph in the US Constitution known as the First Amendment, so I have to put up with Republican propaganda the same way that they have to put up with me and my propaganda.

As much as I support these ads, they do make me jealous. They make this white boy want to go out and find him a boo.

AJ: My sentiments exactly!! I love "My Boo" Campaign!!!

Regan DuCasse | October 6, 2010 5:06 PM

Kids see ads for action movies with GUNS all over the place. The Calvin Klein ads, or just about anything that advertises underwear is saying something overtly sexual.
Violence is glamorized in hip hop culture.

But two men casually showing affection now it's WE CAN'T BE SHOWING THAT!!

Oh please!

You don't have to explain a thing to your children if they witness ANYONE holding hands or kissing casually on the street.
THEY will understand and see it for what it IS.
Two people who LOVE each other.
And that, is something children SHOULD see.

I like the posters. It is not sexual like the hetrosexual posters ads where women are almost naked and men are touching them. I think those are not appropriate for the public especially young children. If children are expose to gay hugging than they will be more accepting! I say Horray to these posters and I hope they will not be put away. Why is it okay for hetrosexuals to be kissing and hugging and not okay for gays?