Responding to pro-lifers’ outrage this week, FOX Sports said it did not have ad space in the 2020 Super Bowl to fit in a pro-life commercial from Faces of Choice.
However, leaders of the pro-life organization said the network gave them the impression that it did, according to the Washington Times.
“We would have been fine with a ‘no.’ We’re adults, we can handle a ‘no,’” said Lyric Gillett, the 28-year-old founder of Faces of Choice and producer of the ad.
But FOX did not give them a “no” or a “yes” about their ad (see below), which features the stories of more than a dozen people who survived their mothers’ abortions, she told the Washington Times.
“Every time we would meet a stipulation or request, it would morph into something different. I would send an email saying, ‘What else do you need to get some type of answer?’” Gillett said. “We never got that answer. So it’s just been a very frustrating experience.”
Gillett said they have been communicating with FOX for six months – only to be ignored repeatedly. Earlier this week, Faces of Choice launched an online campaign urging pro-lifers to contact FOX and ask for a final answer.
That answer came Wednesday in response to a Washington Times request for comment:
A Fox spokesperson said in an email that the network sold out its ad space early on for this year’s championship game in Miami between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers.
“Super Bowl LIV sold out at a record pace this year, and unfortunately we were unable to accommodate Faces of Choice and other advertisers,” the spokesperson said.
But Gillett said they were led to believe that there was still ad space. She said they answered multiple questions from the network and provided various requested documents. At one point, she said the network told them that they would receive an answer by the end of November.
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The answer never came, but eventually she said they heard that the Super Bowl ads had sold out. Undeterred, Gillett said she asked FOX if it would consider the pro-life ad if a slot opened up last-minute. The network told her they would give her an answer “very, very soon,” but she never got one, she said.
“It feels like the reason for that is they don’t want to, I guess in their minds, give a story that we were rejected,” Gillett said. “… Nothing else makes sense. But again, that’s unprofessional, and I don’t think that’s how they operate with other clients.”
The ad has been a work in progress for years, a campaign to shed light on the reality of abortion. Gillett told the Times that she wrote the ad three years ago and began fundraising for the estimated $5 million to purchase a 30-second Super Bowl ad.
“Every great human rights movement in history has been anchored in the stories and the faces of its victims,” Gillett said. “That’s what we aim to do; we simply want to tell their forgotten stories and there’s no larger mega-phone than the Super Bowl.”
FOX Sports has no problem airing controversial ads during the 2020 Super Bowl — just not a pro-life commercial. According to NBC News, this year’s big game between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers will include a commercial featuring drag queens/LGBTQ activists.
Gillett encouraged pro-lifers to shut off the commercials during the Super Bowl and take time to watch the abortion survivors’ stories instead on YouTube. Find the video here.
Abortion survivors pose a vital question to abortion activists through the new ad, “Can you look me in the eye and say I should have been aborted?”
The abortion survivors featured in the ad are: Dr. Imre Téglásy (1952, Hungary); Paula Page (02/24/54); Miriam “Penny” Hopper (11/29/55); Denisha Workizer (7/11/76); Melissa Ohden (8/29/77); Jennifer Millbourn (9/02/78); Jennifer Callender (7/18/80); Claire Culwell (3/06/88); Hope Hoffman (8/12/91); Josiah Presley (10/07/95); Asiimwe Ronald Williams (9/25/97, Uganda); Dona Marie Mendoza (Philippines); Jaylyn Schoch (8/15/03); and Zechariah Hagan (10/20/13), one of the first abortion pill reversal survivors.
Ultimately, Faces of Choice leaders hope their stories will break down the myth of “choice.”
“Abortion advocates need to look these survivors in the eye and come to terms with the fact that they are human, that their lives matter, and that choice is more than a word: it’s a person,” Gillett said.