05/10/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

New Anti-Gay Ads: Can They Be Parodied?

Taking the internet by -- ha ha! -- "storm," are these hilarious ads from the National Organization for Marriage, which describes the organization's efforts in tracking gay tornadoes that are tearing marriages asunder. It's like someone took the plot of Twister, and multiplied it by homophobia and paranoia!


Obviously, I find the whole argument that gay marriage is going to do me any tangible harm to be ridiculous. Matt Yglesias puts it quite well: "It's not as if straight people are being asked to give anything up when gay and lesbian couples want to get married. The lives of heterosexuals will just continue as before." Frankly, I feel that the institution of marriage has already withstood so many socially sanctioned debasements from heterosexuals -- reality television couplings, game shows that reward the airing of infidelities, highways filled with Rock of Love Buses -- that I doubt gay marriage poses the institution a more dramatic threat.

But while I don't agree with NOM's beliefs or claims or worldview, I have to congratulate them for breaking new ground in the field of unintentional hilarity. Truly, this is an inspiration, and it's ripe for parody. And that's precisely what my friend, Air America's Ana Marie Cox, is calling on America to do, via Twitter:

OK: I will offer an TBD prize to the GAYEST (we can vote!) remix of @nomtweet's vile, lie-filled ad http://twurl.nl/uc54re #savenom (pls RT)

(Just to translate from the original Twitter, she will offer a prize to the "gayest...remix" of NOM's ad, winner to be determined by vote, and Twitter users should use the hashtag "#savenom." Ana Marie says the prize is "likely to be DVD of '300' or maybe Larry Craig poster.")

It's a worthy cause! But can it be done? As my colleague, Ryan Grim, points out, "When your own advertisement is treated by the media as a parody, you have problems." And so do those who would outdo the original. Nevertheless, I wish this mission luck!

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