Perhaps you've seen AOL's recent ad, and perhaps you haven't, but my ongoing disgust at them ended with the cancellation of my subscription late last Friday night. Mind you, I am an avid internet junkie. I work in front of a computer screen during the day and maintain a blog as well as keep up with family and friends through e-mail, which usually consumes an additional hour or two in front of my home computer in the evening. Loosing access to the internet over the past 5 days has been a little bit more than a struggle for me!
Let me tell you a little bit about AOL's recent ad. It was an in-your-face use of gay romance to sell their ISP. In our culture, "sex sells." Typically, this has been through images of man and woman in passionate embrace that often border on pornography. However AOL has learned something that I am quite certain many more companies will begin to catch on to: in a culture where homosexuality is becoming an epidemic, the "sex sells" message must also appeal to this sexually deviant crowd. Much like advertisements are in Spanish to appeal to our Hispanic brothers and sisters, companies will appeal to this sexual minority using the "sex sells" philosophy that jives with their lifestyle choices.
Because Christians have failed in our duty to protect life, human sexuality and common decency on many levels, there is widespread acceptance of contraception, abortion on demand, promiscuity, homosexuality, and the list goes on and on. (This has been called the "Heterosexual Revolution" by Stephanie Coontz, and I blogged about this here.)
I called AOL and canceled my subscription immediately after seeing the ad, and this was at 10pm on a Friday night! Not only that, I told them why they just lost a customer.
As the alternative, I have chosen Sienna Communications for my new ISP. The price is cheaper than AOL, and setup was just as easy. Another perk: they donate a part of my bill monthly to the charity of my choice, and I choose Priests for Life. (Thanks be to God, I found them and am "up and running" much quicker than I expected!)
It's not only the programs, projects and events that a company chooses to sponsor, but also the content of their ad and the anti-Christian agenda that they consistently push that are important. We saw this with the Carl's Jr. ad's earlier this year featuring Paris Hilton making love to a hamburger… When possible, stand up for what is right!
Here are some more ideas of how mainstream Catholic pro-life people have used their talents to serve the Church and spread the Gospel message.
ParishPay. ParishPay uses a system much like "PayPal," but the purpose is to make direct donations to your parish through the internet. What a great idea!!
Café Fiat. Café Fiat was only brought to my attention today, sadly because they are temporarily closed. This coffee shop/ deli used their business to host Catholic speakers, spread the pro-life message and evangelize while serving amazing food.
One More Soul. One More Soul has a directory of NFP only practitioners. What a gift!!
For those interested in boycotts and protests of companies that advertise for or advertise by means of contradicting the Gospel message, please visit American Decency Association or Life Decisions International.
As our beloved Pope John Paul the Great said, "Place your talents at the service of life!!"