Miller’s banner over the Folson fair event (Photo by Americans for Truth)
Graphic photographs of nearly nude homosexuals strutting the streets of San Francisco under the sponsorship banner of Miller Brewing Co. are being made available to tens of thousands of Catholics in Milwaukee, the beer company’s hometown.
The Catholic League said it is sending the photographs, many of them also posted online under a parental warning about graphic content, to apply pressure to the brewery to halt its sponsorship of such events.
It broke into the headlines this year with its promotional image mocking the Last Supper scene of Jesus Christ and his disciples, replacing the biblical leaders with leather-adorned men and the bread and wine with sex toys.
The Catholic League had called a boycott of the Miller Brewing Co. after the beer giant failed to have its logo removed from the event.
Catholic League President Bill Donohue has said he’d like Miller to rescind its sponsorship completely.
But officials say the brewer has declined, and so this distribution of photographs will allow leaders, residents and workers in the company’s hometown see the results of the company’s sponsorship.
“We have been informed by Miller Brewing that it is not prepared at this time to offer assurances that it will never again sponsor an anti-Christian event; it merely says that it is conducting an audit of its marketing policies. Accordingly, our response to Miller’s balk is as follows,” Donohue said.
“We are mailing pictures of the anti-Christian and sadomasochistic Folsom Street Fair that Miller so proudly sponsors to Milwaukee Archbishop Timothy Dolan and to the 211 Catholic parishes in the archdiocese. We want all Catholics in Milwaukee to know exactly what Miller stands for,” he said.
“The mailing to Catholics is just the first of many mailings we have planned. Every week we will announce a new segment of the Milwaukee community that will receive the photos. If Miller wants to be so bold as to throw Catholics and Protestants overboard for the sake of siding with the most morally depraved persons in our society – persons with whom no self-respecting heterosexual or homosexual would ever associate – then it must suffer the consequences. The boycott is on, and now the campaign to blanket religious and secular leaders in the Milwaukee community with the evidence of Miller’s complicity in this sordid affair has begun,” he said.
“We hated to put them up, but thought it was important for people to know,” Kiera McCaffrey, director of communications for the League, told WND about the online postings. “Milwaukee deserves better than this.”
“Certainly the people of Milwaukee will be disgusted to see this,” she said. “That’s why we feel it’s important people actually see what’s going on.”
She said the photographs have been edited, unlike the event itself, so there’s no full frontal nudity.
“We’re not mailing these to children. We’re mailing these to pastors of churches, to grownups. … These pictures are awful,” she said.
Also providing graphic documentation about the Folsom event is Americans for Truth, whose chief, Peter LaBarbera, and Allyson Smith attended the event.
A child watching a show sponsored by a San Francisco bathhouse company (Photo by Americans for Truth)
“We saw children, we saw about 4-5 kids,” LaBarbera told WND. “It’s incredible that a parent would bring his or her children into that environment.
He said police officers also were present, but there was no apparent effort to enforce any public nudity ban. “I saw hundreds of men totally nude except for sneakers,” he said. “Women were walking along in master-slave relationships. It was pretty weird to see people led around by chains.”
“We spoke with several policemen and security guards and the consensus was that rampant nudity and public sex are expected every year at Folsom Street (this was the event’s 25th year) and that it is the city’s politicians ? from the mayor on down – who are to blame for allowing it,” AFTAH’s report said. “(Mayor Gavin Newsom greeted Folsom Street attendees in a letter published in the Fair’s program, warmly telling them to ‘have a great day and enjoy this wonderful and exciting event.’) It seemed to us that police, as law ‘enforcers,’ were put in the very awkward position of overseeing sexual anarchy and general lawlessness, as there was expectation that laws would be enforced to stop the public sex and nudity ? assuming such anti-lewdness laws in San Francisco and California.”
He said an addition to the nudity, there were sex acts going on in public.
“There was utter lawlessness and sexual anarchy. We actually witnessed oral sex on the streets,” he said. “There were public whippings and spankings.”
Folsom Street Fair promotional poster
“The president does not believe that the First Amendment prohibits him from speaking out against the Miller Brewing Company’s widely reported financing of an obscene parody of ‘Jesus Christ’s Last Supper’ in San Francisco, does he?” Les Kinsolving, WND’s correspondent at the White House, asked.
But Perino’s response was only: “Well, you’re clearing the room, Les. I’m going to decline to comment.”
The “clearing the room” reference was to NBC reporter Kelly O’Donnell, who, according to the Catholic League, “stormed out of the room [when Kinsolving asked his question] muttering her disapproval of Kinsolving’s question.”
The Catholic League said it considered that Perino dropped the ball on the question, and it would not hesitate to comment on both issues:
“She [Perino] was asked a legitimate question about a viciously obscene and anti-Christian event – one that President Bush would never speak approvingly of – and she got cold feet,” the organization said. “Perino did so because she followed the lead of NBC reporter Kelly O’Donnell who stormed out of the room muttering her disapproval of Kinsolving’s question.”
“We’d love to know what is bugging O’Donnell (does she like public displays of S&M and Christian bashing?), but the larger issue is why the Bush administration appointed a coward as its press secretary. Tony Snow would never have allowed a member of the press corps to set the table.”
As WND also has reported, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in whose district the event was held, offered a dismissive quip when she was asked about the mockery of the Last Supper.
“As a Catholic, the speaker is confident that Christianity has not been harmed,” said Drew Hammill, the San Francisco Democrat’s press secretary.
Related special offers: