The campaign to fire Ellen DeGeneres as
the spokeswoman for JCPenney because she is openly gay has shifted
its strategy after the company rejected their demands.
The group One Million Moms, which is
closely associated with the Christian conservative group American
Family Association (AFA), called on JCPenney to fire DeGeneres.
The group said it objected to DeGeneres
because she is openly gay.
“Funny that JCPenney thinks hiring an
open homosexual spokesperson will help their business when most of
its customers are traditional families,” the group said.
The 54-year-old DeGeneres, who publicly
came out in 1997, is the host of The Ellen DeGeneres Show and
is a spokesperson for CoverGirl and American Express. DeGeneres
married actress Portia DeRossi in 2008.
JCPenney has said that it “stands
behind its partnership with Ellen DeGeneres.”
“Insulting customers by ignoring us
will not be tolerated,” the group
said. “OMM members can shop elsewhere if JCPenney does not
appreciate our business. Unless JCPenney decides to be neutral in
the culture war and listen to customers in a considerate fashion,
their brand transformation will be unsuccessful.”
One Million Moms has instructed members
to abandon calls to the company's corporate office and shift their
protest to local store managers.
“Local managers are more likely to
listen to your concerns and pass them along to the corporate office,”
the group noted.
petition in support of DeGeneres launched by media advocacy and
anti-defamation group GLAAD had attracted nearly 30,000 signatures by