UPDATE: KABC TV general manager Arnie Kleiner has apologized for the way the rejection of the PSA was handled, saying that their statement "we reserve the right not to air it in programming that will include large family audiences" was misleading.
"I have seen the [PSAs] and will gladly air the spots on any day part on our schedule," Kleiner said, according to a statement by GetToKnowUsFirst.org. "Gay and lesbian families are part of our KABC family, and issues of equality are certainly not a controversial subject for us."
The Los Angeles station has now agreed to air the marriage ad this Sunday during Extreme Makeover: Home Edition at about 9:15 p.m.
According to non-profit GetToKnowUsFirst.org, LA's KABC TV (owned by Disney) refused to air its 30-second PSAs during Obama's inauguration. The ads, featuring gay couples and their various families, aired in 42 of the states' 58 counties -- everywhere the initiative passed by 50% or more, with KABC being the only station refusing to air them.
The rejected ad profiles two African American men raising five children ages 6 through 25. Ironically, the family lives in Los Angeles.
The organization's ad agency, New and Improved Media, attempted the media buy, and its CEO Keith Fisher said, "We usually only see this with risque content, as in a trailer for a movie." He added, "If KABC thinks they have to protect the public from this family, something's obviously very wrong over there."
According to GettoKnowUsFirst.org, KABC told the agency that the ad was too controversial and stood firm in their rejection saying, "many families will be watching."
The ad aired across California on Tuesday -- before, during and after the Presidential Inauguration on Good Morning America, The Today Show, Despierta America (Univision) and Levantate (Telemundo) broadcasts, as well as on a wide range of regional news stations, CNN and FoxNews during evening coverage of the day's events.
One week prior, at attorney Gloria Allred's urging, Rev. Rick Warren indicated he would be willing to show the ads to his congregation at Saddleback Church in Orange County. Days before the Presidential Inauguration, he changed his mind, dropping the offer.
Contact KABC and tell them of your disapproval of their blatant discrimination. Tell them how unacceptable it is to deny a legitimate, paid ad simply because it features married gays and their families.
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