MTV counters Heroic Media claim, says it is not running ad from group behind racial anti-abortion rights billboards
At an April 30 anti-abortion rights marketing fundraiser in Bethesda, Md., headlined by Sarah Palin, Heroic Media announced that this spring’s Northeast marketing campaign would include television ads on MTV and Black Entertainment Television, but an MTV spokesperson has since told The American Independent that it would not be airing the Heroic Media ads due to the organization’s recent billboard campaign that has sparked controversy.
The network aired two television ads – “Teen Angst” and “We Can Help” — from May to November 2010, always after midnight, but according to MTV spokesperson Jeannie Kedas, MTV decided not to accept more Heroic Media spots in a recent media buy. Kedas provided the official MTV statement: “Upon further review, it was hard for us [MTV] to separate some of the recent tactics of the organization behind the campaign and the ads themselves, so we [MTV] have opted to not accept them for air this time.”
MTV’s standards department, which is in charge of clearing ads, made the ultimate decision not to run any more Heroic Media-produced ads. Kedas said Heroic was notified of the decision the week after Heroic announced at the April 30 fundraiser that the ads would run on MTV. Yet, Heroic Media communications director Kimberly Guidry Speirs said she was still unaware of MTV’s decision as of Monday, May 9. Speirs told TAI that MTV agreed to run the ads in a recent national buy.
It was Heroic Media’s recent billboard campaign that has elicited controversy for likening the womb to the “most dangerous place for an African-American” child and portraying Planned Parenthood as a propagator of genocide against African-American babies. The racially focused campaign led to billboards in Austin, Texas, where Heroic Media headquarters are based; Houston; and Jacksonville, Fla., beginning in October 2010.
But the campaign really grabbed national attention this past February, when a “The Most Dangerous Place for an African American is in the Womb” billboard, erected by Heroic Media affiliate Life Always, wound up in New York City. Life Always again made national headlines in March for erecting billboards in the South Side of Chicago with President Obama’s face attached to the message, “Every 21 minutes, our next possible leader is aborted.”
BET has not confirmed whether or not the network is airing the Heroic Media commercials.