A New Zealand commercial for Libra tampons has been pulled from the air for implying that transgender women are not actually female since they don’t menstruate.
The ad opens with a transgender woman primping next to a cute blonde in the bathroom of a nightclub. Both women try to outdo one another, competitively applying mascara, lip gloss, and adjusting their bras. The smaller blonde is depicted as winning after she pulls out a tampon. The transgender female storms out, and the tag line “Libra gets girls” fills the screen.
The advertisement, which was posted on Libra’s Facebook on December 21 and since then has been playing on New Zealand television, provoked a bevy of complaints.
One commenter on Libra’s Facebook page noted, “So, for the females who’ve gone through the likes of menopause or hysterectomies I suppose Libra failed to get those girls.”
Agender New Zealand president Cherise Witehira called the ad “blatantly transphobic.”
Libra has apologized for offending the transgender community and has pulled the commercial.
Other companies have been accused of transphobia in recent years. Taco Bell had to pull a transphobic radio commercial in 2010, and even Saturday Night Live came under scrutiny last year after airing a mock ad for Estro-Maxx, which boasted to “shrink those pesky male genitals” — the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation complained that there was no joke in the skit since “all the laughs came from the commercial’s offensive and dehumanizing portrayals of transgender women.“
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