.- Defenders of a pro-life Super Bowl ad featuring sports star Tim Tebow have charged that critics are being unreasonable and venomous in their opposition to broadcasting the story of his mother’s “very brave and virtuous” decision to carry her unborn son to term despite the threat to her life.
The 30-second ad is sponsored by Focus on the Family and intends to encourage respect for life. College football quarterback Tim Tebow and his mother Pam will reportedly share their story in the ad.
Pam Tebow refused medical advice to abort her unborn son after she contracted a life-threatening infection in the Philippines.
Pro-abortion women’s groups have criticized the ad and have called on CBS to refuse to air it. The National Organization for Women (NOW) has claimed it is “frankly offensive” to viewers, “hate masquerading as love.” They have said it sends the message that abortion is “always a mistake.”
The New York-based Women’s Media Center, which is leading a petition effort, has billed the ad as an “attack on choice” that tries to “dictate morality” and risks women’s health by encouraging them to ignore medical advice.
One defender of the ad was Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List. She claimed that the reaction of NOW and other abortion supporters was a sign of their increasingly unpopular pro-abortion position.
She reported that the NOW president Terry O’Neill has told the National Journal that the organization is struggling and “stalled out.”
Dannenfelser charged the ad’s critics showed a “desperation to keep full information from women.”
“Shouldn't the ‘pro-choice’ position respect Pam Tebow's decision to choose Life? What is the worst case scenario in allowing the ad to air? Women are exposed to an example of sacrifice for the sake of an unborn child. NOW needs to explain where the harm and threat to women and children is here.”
Dr. Gary Cass of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission said NOW was directing “venom and hatred” at Tim Tebow, his mother and Focus on the Family because of an ad they have not seen.
"This backlash exposes the irrational hatred of NOW who apparently despises any hint of a positive Christian message. CBS is to be commended for their willingness to not censor a wonderful story of a mother's courage and love," he said.
Cass praised Pam Tebow’s “faith, courage and sacrifice” and said it was ironic that NOW is attacking a woman for doing a “very brave and virtuous thing.”
Though it has not been reported whether the Tebow ad has Christian content, Cass also claimed NOW’s reaction exposes an “irrational anti-Christian bigotry.”
The pro-life group Concerned Women for America (CWA) charged that the outcry was “hypocritical” because they have not criticized shows like Dexter, where the protagonist is a serial killer, or sexually explicit shows that flaunt “shifting morals.”
“Shows like these demean women and are offensive to families, but NOW claims to be more offended by Tim Tebow sharing his uplifting pro-life story,” the group said in a press release.
Penny Nance, CEO of CWA, said in more than three years advising the Federal Communications Commission Chairman Kevin Martin on indecency issues, she cannot recall NOW ever speaking out about “sexually graphic or misogynistic content” on CBS.
“I find it laughable that NOW has a problem with Tim Tebow sharing his own story. If NOW really cared about women they would stop flacking for the abortion industry and start working on behalf of women and resolving our concerns about real problems such as sexually exploitative and violent content on television.”
Tim Tebow discussed the ad with reporters on Sunday.
"I know some people won't agree with it, but I think they can at least respect that I stand up for what I believe," he remarked, according to the Associated Press.
Tebow said he has always been “very convicted” of his views on abortion because “that’s the reason I’m here, because my mom was a very courageous woman.”