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Tim Tebow Defends Participation in Super Bowl Ad for Evangelical Anti-Gay, Pro-Life Group Focus on the Family

University of Florida football quarterback Tim Tebow was asked about his participation in an upcoming Super Bowl commercial for evangelical anti-gay, pro-life organization Focus on the Family.

Said Tebow: "I know some people won't agree with it, but I think they can at least respect that I stand up for what I believe, and I'm never shy about that. I don't feel like I'm very preachy about it, but I do stand up for what I believe. Unfortunately in today's society not many athletes tend to do that. So I'm just standing for something. I've always been every convicted of it (being anti-abortion), because that's the reason I'm here, because my mom was a very courageous woman. So any way that I could help, I would do it."

Tintebow Tebow has made his role as a "servant of God" clear before. In a GQ profile, complete with shirtless pin-up photo, Tebow said: "When you die, there's gonna be a tombstone, and on that tombstone there's gonna be a name, and there's gonna be a date. And for me, it's going to be 1987, and then it's gonna have a dash.… I want that dash to mean something. I want that dash to be special. I want that dash to represent that Tim Tebow finished strong. And most importantly, when I get to heaven, I want Jesus to say, well done, my good and faithful servant."

Networks have policies rejecting issue advertising in national spots, the NYT reports: "That is one reason why the decision by CBS to sell time to Focus on the Family is raising eyebrows. Another reason is that in the past CBS has rejected requests to buy issue ads during Super Bowl games. A third reason is that the founder of Focus on the Family, James Dobson, has been a polarizing figure in recent years in discussions of social and political issues."

CBS Sports Columnist Gregg Doyel slammed the CBS decision in a column last week: "Apparently the commercial has a beautiful, undeniable message. Tebow's mother suffered a life-threatening infection during that pregnancy, and doctors advised her to abort the baby. She didn't. She named him Tim. Just typing this paragraph gives me goose bumps. The commercial might just make me cry. Still, I don't want to see. Not during the damn Super Bowl. And I'm not complaining about the ad because it's anti-abortion and I'm not. I'm complaining about the ad because it's pro-politics. And I'm not. Not on Super Sunday. If you're a sports fan, and I am, that's the holiest day of the year. That's a day for five hours of football pregame shows and four hours of football game and three hours of postgame football analysis. That's a day for football addicts to gorge themselves to the gills on football. It's not a day to discuss abortion. For it, against it, I don't care what you are. On Super Sunday, I don't care what I am. Feb. 7 is simply not the day to have that discussion."

Bounce CBS has reportedly approved the Focus ad: " CBS executives approved a script for a Super Bowl spot from evangelical group Focus on the Family, which suggests the ad will not carry a pro-life message — at least an overt one. The network has a policy of prohibiting advocacy ads, even ones that carry an 'implicit' endorsement for a side in a public debate. A CBS spokesman did say the network will review the video version of the spot before giving it the final green light, but does not anticipate any hurdles."

The rules are fuzzy enough, however, Think Progress reports, that networks can skirt them.

In 2004, CBS rejected an ad about tolerance from the United Church of Christ in which the UCC's inclusive policies were highlighted by showing a bouncer stationed at a church door with a velvet rope turning away gays and minorities. The Guardian has posted a bunch of Super Bowl ads rejected by networks.

Watch the UCC ad which was rejected, AFTER THE JUMP...

A Facebook group has been formed to demand that CBS either reject the Tebow - Focus on the Family ad or give the United Church of Christ the opportunity it was denied in 2004 to air an ad about tolerance.

Tony Joiner's Touchdown Kiss for Tim Tebow Causes Stir [tr]

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  1. Lots of people stand up for what they believe in. That isn't automatically worthy of respect; therefore, he hasn't defended his choice to stand up for the antichoice/freedom view. From suicide bombers (who really STAND UP) to the greatest butchers in history. He's very stupid, and has sullied the name of the university of florida.

    "The fundamental cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid are certain while the intelligent are full of doubt."

    "It has been said that man is a rational animal. All my life I have been searching for evidence which could support this."

    -Lord Russell.

    Posted by: TANK | Jan 25, 2010 5:14:25 PM

  2. Of course Mr. Tebow has every right to spew his nonsense. I also have the right to boycott the Super Bowl and CBS. I do not need some brash young millionaire to tell me how to live my life.

    Posted by: Oberon | Jan 25, 2010 5:18:48 PM

  3. I suspected that this would turn into a strawman about free speech. You idiots just don't comprehend that the right to criticize his thoughtless worldview is protected by the same right.

    Posted by: TANK | Jan 25, 2010 5:21:39 PM

  4. THANK YOU Tank! Excellent point! We're not criticizing Tim Tebow for "speaking his mind" (however inarticulately he does so), we're criticizing him for his content, his belief, and his alliance with a homophobic group, all of which we disagree with and find repulsive. If Tebow has the right to say whatever he wants (and he does) then we also have the right to criticize him. It's that simple.

    And Tank, please notice that this straw-man "free speech" argument always comes up when gays on this site et al want to excuse the vile conservatism and narrow world-view of straight, white, muscular jocks. For these gays, politics, social issues, and every manner of discrimination can be overlooked in the service of giant pecs. It's straight worship, white privilege, and self-loathing at its worst.

    Just know Tank that we may be few in number, but some of us appreciate your recalcitrant and often correct comments. Keep fighting the good fight!

    Posted by: Jon | Jan 25, 2010 5:54:12 PM

  5. Judging by how retarded Tebow looks and how poor his English is, are we sure he WASN'T aborted??

    Posted by: AM | Jan 25, 2010 5:57:07 PM

  6. "One can infer from his message that his religious beliefs don't allow for abortion. Good for him for standing up for what he believes in. Pro-choice certainly doesn't have any more moral high ground than Pro-life. Fortunately for him his mother chose not to listen to, what turned out to be, bad advice from the Doctor."

    Yes, and many people's religious beliefs don't allow for the existence of gay people and our equality. They have every right to express that view, also, but don't expect those of us who believe in freedom of choice and equal rights to cheer them on.

    As for Tim Tebow's mother, the important word is choice. She chose not to listen to doctors, was allowed to make that decision, and it was the right decision for her. It may not have been for another mother, but FOF only allows for their choices.

    I harbor no particular ill will towards Tim Tebow, but gay people should be criticizing anyone (Tebow and CBS both) who chooses to associate themselves with an organization that works to deprive us and women of our right to make choices in accordance with our own morals. They're a despicable organization using a football player to sugarcoat their vitriol.

    Posted by: Ernie | Jan 25, 2010 6:07:18 PM

  7. Tank, there's a difference between criticism and idiotic rantings and personal attacks.

    As usual, there have been more of the latter than the former. Free speech doesn't give you the right to troll a blog and make vicious comments about someone whose views you don't agree with.

    Posted by: DR | Jan 25, 2010 6:20:14 PM

  8. DR, there's a difference between an argument and an opinion. As usual, you fail to grasp the distinction. And as to thoughtless rantings, your comments are thoughtless rantings, but with a sincere effort to placate bigots. You are in this thread as in all others, a useless voice that props up bigotry.

    Posted by: TANK | Jan 25, 2010 7:52:44 PM

  9. And yes, free speech does allow you to make "vicious comments" (to you, those that disagree, apparently, about an acutely controversial issue) about someone on a blog.

    Posted by: TANK | Jan 25, 2010 7:54:34 PM

  10. I'd like to know, if Tim Tebow's horrible world views were coming from someone who wasn't "hot" or even white (yeah I said it), would so many panting gay men on this board be defending him? If Kanye West had done this, I bet you anything this site would crash from all the gays logging in at once to register their disgust and proclaim him the worst creature on the planet.

    How lucky for Tebow that white straight worship supersedes critical thinking for so many gays (and not just white gays either).

    Posted by: Jon | Jan 25, 2010 8:10:59 PM

  11. DR: The first amendment does, indeed, protect my political speech. It also protects your speech, however silly and condescending it may be. Even if the political speech is vile -- just watch Fox News any evening as more proof.

    JON: Your comments are insightful. If Mr. Tebow had been of color, fat, ugly, and/or old -- he would not have the support of those unfortunate members of our community who hold on to broken dreams of being taken to the prom by the local football star and spend most of their lives chasing unobtainable straight men.

    Posted by: Dawid8611 | Jan 25, 2010 10:05:11 PM

  12. Great nips, though.

    Posted by: Rich | Jan 25, 2010 10:08:18 PM

  13. Thanks Dawid. Your first comment made me LOL btw.

    Posted by: Jon | Jan 25, 2010 10:09:37 PM

  14. I'm sad to see that people find it so simple to just engage in childish name-calling. Even sadder, I'm not surprised. Personal attacks and name calling is apparently what passes for debate these days, at least in the blogoverse. Guess I may as well get used to it, no matter how much I wish, it doesn't get any better here...

    Posted by: DR | Jan 25, 2010 10:24:54 PM

  15. Oh please. How many of you fags were planning to watch the Super Bowl anyway?

    Posted by: GrabbinNewscum | Jan 25, 2010 10:35:01 PM

  16. DR, childish name-calling is nothing compared to the more troubling worship of straight white men that inundates the gay community (and this site). Gays are constantly excusing the sins of people who look like Tebow, and I know you don't see that as a big problem but...that's kinda my point.

    Posted by: Jon | Jan 25, 2010 11:17:50 PM

  17. Can't we get him busted for steroids?

    Posted by: JeffNYC | Jan 25, 2010 11:29:37 PM

  18. "He has been very clear that he wants to tell his story and isn't telling other folks what they should do."

    So... is he just blissfully unaware that abortion is a political issue in this country? Is he unfamiliar with Focus on the Family's political campaign that has funneled tens of millions of dollars into trying to ban abortion.

    He's working to make sure that women like his mother WON'T HAVE A CHOICE or he's dumb as a post.

    Posted by: BobN | Jan 26, 2010 12:29:09 AM

  19. or both

    Posted by: BobN | Jan 26, 2010 12:29:43 AM

  20. I always admired Tim Tebow, but now I find him to be a hero, for being a man who loves Jesus Christ above all else. He is a true testament to what it means to put Jesus Christ before all else. He is a man of integrity, not just on the field, but well beyond. This dude is the real deal.

    Posted by: Javier | Jan 26, 2010 12:39:55 AM

  21. Focus on the Family, a non-profit Christian organization, is not elaborating on the commercial’s message, but the story is expected to detail the Tebows’ pro-life message in line with Christian faith.

    Posted by: buy r4i | Jan 26, 2010 12:55:38 AM

  22. JAVIER, you've got to be kidding me, right? A 21 year old jock millionaire represents Jesus Christ well to you, does he?! How exactly is his worldly lifestyle reflect jesus christ?

    Posted by: nikko | Jan 26, 2010 1:24:26 AM

  23. Nikko they're probably similar because, much like Tebow, Jesus was an unwanted pregnancy.

    Posted by: Jon | Jan 26, 2010 1:29:04 AM

  24. Super Bowl, Super Bowl.
    Really taken my soul.
    Here again u've come!
    pleasure, brought more than some.

    I'm looking forward to attend the gmaes, I even got ma tix from and waiting for February!

    Come on February!
    what surprise u carry!
    who'll win who'll loose!
    the latter is a moose.

    Posted by: super bowl | Jan 26, 2010 5:10:39 AM

  25. So he will just close his eyes to the MANY internet pages of gay hate the compare Gay Men to Pedophiles - self-serving elitist scum - nothing else

    Posted by: Walter | Jan 26, 2010 8:46:45 AM

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