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Gay group to air ads on homosexuality


JACKSON -A group hopes a TV ad campaign will help change what it says is a hostile environment against homosexuals in Mississippi.

Mississippi Gay Lobby will air ads on MTV channel 36 on Time-Warner between 7 and 9 p.m. today in the Jackson metro area. The ad is scheduled during MTV's broadcast of an original movie called "Anatomy of a Hate Crime," dealing with the killing of a gay man.

The ad will run on Time-Warner and SusCom cable channels MTV and VH-1, reaching approximately 95,000 viewers, said Jody Renaldo, chairman of the group.

The ad features the image of a man and the words, "This guy could be your best friend." That's followed by "This guy could be your brother," "This guy could be your son," and "This guy could be gay."

"Anything that will get out there and educate the community, I approve of," said Eddie Sandifer, director of the Mississippi Gay and Lesbian Alliance.

Forest Thigpen, president of the Mississippi Family Council, said he is concerned about the ad campaign.

"All people should be treated respectfully, but that doesn't change the fact that homosexuality itself is immoral and should be discouraged, not encouraged," Thigpen said. "I'm concerned that people who see them, especially young people who are still confused about life, will see the ads and make the wrong step toward that lifestyle, thinking that they will find answers there."

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