Laura Bush’s request to be removed from a gay marriage ad is being honored by the pro-gay marriage group Respect for Marriage Coalition who is launching a new ad. The latest update on Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013, provided by The Dallas Morning News states that Respect for Marriage Coalition “is honoring former first lady Laura Bush’s request that they remove her from a newly launched national advertising campaign in support of gay marriage.”
“We appreciate Mrs. Bush’s previous comments but are sorry she didn’t want to be included in an ad.”
Laura Bush is not only a former “First Lady” but the embodiment of a lady and as such her most likely response would be, “Sorry, you didn’t ask.”
It appears that asking someone’s permission before using someone’s words, especially in a public ad, is not only the right thing to do but also a respectful thing to do.
Former first lady Laura Bush asked Respect for Marriage Coalition to remove her from a national television, newspaper, and online advertising campaign that was launched this week because the pro-gay marriage group failed to show the proper respect to ask Laura Bush for permission to use a snippet from an old interview in the ad campaign.
Anne MacDonald, a Bush spokesperson, stated on Wednesday that Laura Bush “did not approve of her inclusion in this advertisement nor is she associated with the group that made the ad in any way.”
In 2010, Laura Bush gave an interview to Larry King on CNN and during the interview, Laura Bush said that “When couples are committed to each other and love each other then they ought to have the same sort of rights that everyone has.”
On Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2013, Laura Bush discovered that her 2010 words were part of a TV ad that kicked off a $1 million media campaign by the pro-gay marriage group Respect for Marriage Coalition.
Wednesday’s TV advertisement on cable was only the beginning of an advertisement campaign that was to extent to more prominent ad features on network Sunday news shows and full-page print ads that were scheduled to begin running in The New York Times and other publications during the following days.
After Laura Bush requested to be removed from the gay marriage ad, the pro-gay marriage group Respect for Marriage Coalition is stating that the new ad “will now move to new and different voices that reflect the depth and breadth of our support.”
While it is regrettable that Laura Bush was put into the position of having become the subject of an unnecessary public spectacle (for some), the incident can be an important reminder for organizations to check their names and mission statements before launching a $1 million media campaign.
On their website, the pro-gay marriage group Respect for Marriage Coalition writes that,
“The Respect for Marriage Coalition is a partnership of more than 80 civil rights, faith, health, labor, business, legal, LGBT, student, and women's organizations working together to end the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and grow support for the freedom to marry. The Coalition is co-chaired by Freedom to Marry and the Human Rights Campaign.”
Even though there is no “pro-former first lady group,” it appears Laura Bush should have deserved from the beginning the same respect, support, and human rights that the pro-gay marriage group Respect for Marriage Coalition is standing for.