League Targets Two Major Advertisers

December 29, 1994 by  
Filed under Catalyst Online, Features

The Catholic League has registered complaints with the distributors of Dewar’s scotch (Schieffelen and Somerset) and with the Ramada Milford Plaza Hotel in New York for sponsoring a program that contained anti-Catholic material.

Both Dewar’s and Ramada were among a list of sponsors who helped underwrite the Lesbian and Gay Cultural & Business Expo, a program held in New York City, October 7-8. In one of the exhibitions, the Haunted House, there was a strong anti-Catholic presence.

The Haunted House exhibition consisted of a maze of rooms. The first room, a “prayer room,” featured a spinning statue of Jesus with red eyes and dreadlocks. In response to hand clapping, Jesus emitted eerie laughter. Sitting in front of Jesus were several Jack-in-the-Box type items called “Cracker Crumbs,” featuring likenesses of Cardinal O’Connor and others. Bowls on the table contained a yellow liquid which resembled urine. A crucifix sat in one of them and was adorned with the letters NEA (obviously a reference to the National Endowment for the Arts and its funding of Andres Serrano’s “art” which included a crucifix immersed in urine).

In another bowl there was a reference to Cardinal O’ Connor’s plea that if anyone is thinking about killing an abortionist, he should kill the Cardinal instead. There was a little statue of a pope or bishop with an altar boy kneeling in front of him, with a noose around the boy’s neck.

In the center of the room was a four-sided cardboard pillar that had holes in it. The holes were labeled “Cardinal O’Connor’s Sphincter” etc. There was also a room which identified the Catholic League along with other, presumably “beyond the pale type,” organizations.

The League expressed its outrage with Dewar’s and Ramada, asking representatives of both companies to say whether they condoned this type of exhibition. And if they did not, then we asked them to explain why they didn’t; we also asked what measures might be taken in the future to guard against this kind of thing happening again.


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Written by Bill