An Alberta oil sands group has apologized for a cheeky ad with no political correctness in sight, which said that Canadian fuel should be preferred over Saudi gas because lesbians would “die” in the Gulf state, but are considered “hot” in Canada.
The founder of Canada Oil Sands Community, Robbie Picard, published an official apology on the group’s Facebook page, stating: “It was not my intent of demeaning women or any people of any sexual orientation.”
“It was rather to highlight injustice done by other countries we are purchasing our oil from. I certainly don’t want to divide our community. I believe in equality and human rights,” Picard added.
The apology comes after the group released a controversial poster online, which has since been dubbed the “hot lesbians ad.”
The picture showed two women kissing, and a caption stating: “In Canada lesbians are considered hot! In Saudi Arabia if you’re a lesbian YOU DIE! Why are we getting our oil from countries that don’t think lesbians are hot?!”
Underneath, the catchphrase read: “Choose Equality! Choose Canadian oil!”
The picture triggered an outburst of criticism implying that the phrase was “objectifying” women.
“That poster was disgusting, fetishizing queer women and reducing the existence of lesbians to something for men’s pleasure – for something for men to find ‘hot’,” Jessa Evenden wrote on the Canada Oil Sands Community page, where the ad was posted.
Following public backlash, the ad was removed from the page. It remains unclear whether Saudi oil exporters felt similarly insulted, but some Canadians suggested “better” ways the ad could have been phrased.
“There are so many BETTER ways Robbie could have conveyed the same message: “X number of same sex marriages in Alberta in 2015, X number of homosexuals beheaded in Saudi Arabia in 2015…Or if one want’s to talk about the difference in women’s rights, In Saudi Arabia women can’t drive cars. In Alberta they drive CAT 797’s,” Jon Tupper wrote.
Perhaps Picard would like to hire Tupper as his “politically correct” meme writer, to avoid similar faux pas in the future.