It appears MSNBC can dish it out but it can’t take it: On Tuesday the cable news network turned down an ad that criticized Family Research Council and its president, Tony Perkins, a frequent guest on the channel.
According to its website, Faithful America—the group that submitted the commercial—is an online community inspired to “counter hate speech and misinformation in the media pertaining to people of faith.”
In a statement, a FA spokesman said:
Amid a growing outcry from Christian leaders to take Family Research Council President Tony Perkins off the air, MSNBC yesterday rejected an ad exposing his and [Family Research Council’s] extensive record of hate speech against gay and lesbian Americans. Perkins has appeared on MSNBC 23 times since his organization was designated a hate group, most recently last week on Hardball with Chris Matthews.
In the commercial, Perkins is seen comparing homosexuality to pedophilia and calling gay people “vile.”
According to the Florida Independent, FA claims it collected 20,000 signatures to get Perkins booted and delivered them to MSNBC’s Manhattan offices. But both the request and the ad were rejected. The group’s director, Michael Sherrard, explained that, “a representative from MSNBC wrote, ‘Thank you for providing the ad and substantiation… Our policy states that we have sole discretion to accept or reject an ad based on its appropriateness. In this instance we are rejecting the ad.’”
Sherrard told the Independent that his group is “deeply concerned that MSNBC uses Perkins as an appropriate spokesperson for the faith community.”