The ACLU of Texas and Legacy Community Health have released a Richard Linklater directed, 60-second digital ad, showing Texas’ ‘bathroom bill’ (S.B. 6) isn’t about so-called privacy, but about discriminating against transgender Texans.
The spot, titled “Taking a Seat, Making a Stand,” encourages Texans – through targeted digital buys on Facebook – to contact their state legislator in opposition to S.B. 6. Using humor to undercut the fear-mongering of some policymakers, the ad features two transgender Texans and is directed by five-time Academy-Award nominee Richard Linklater, who worked closely with one of the nation’s premier creative agencies, GSD&M, out of Austin.
“Our ad shows S.B. 6 does absolutely nothing to bolster privacy and safety in a restroom,” said Katy Caldwell, CEO of Houston-based Legacy Community Health.
“The only thing the bill does do is discriminate against transgender Texans, including our patients and a member of my own family. Lawmakers should be focused on keeping kids in classrooms – not out of bathrooms – and other priorities like improving health care and creating jobs.”
“Lt. Gov. Patrick and other state lawmakers who support S.B. 6 portray the bill as a ‘common sense’ protection of ‘common decency’,” said Terri Burke, executive director of the ACLU of Texas.
“There’s nothing decent about a proposed law that would exclude transgender people from public spaces or bar them from participating in public life. With this campaign we hope to raise awareness on the issue and ensure that Texas doesn’t consign our transgender brothers and sisters to second-class status under the law.”
The ad calls on Texas not to follow the lead of North Carolina, which has endured a $1 billion economic loss as a direct result from that state’s bathroom bill. Economic damage resulting from discriminatory legislation is not theoretical.
“As a company born and raised in Austin, Texas, we understand firsthand how discriminatory legislation can affect our state and the state of business,” said Duff Stewart, CEO of GSD&M.
“Should a ‘bathroom bill’ pass, Texas will be perceived as divisive and unwelcoming – a reputation that will hinder our ability to attract diverse employees, clients and businesses, and devastate our economy. We partnered with the ACLU of Texas, Legacy Community Health and Richard Linklater to champion progress for Texas and achieve equality for everyone.”
Linklater is a lifetime Texas resident and known for such films as Boyhood (2015), School of Rock (2003) and Dazed and Confused (1993).