A Minnesota nonprofit has launched a national campaign to give parents and others tools to protest the “humiliating and manipulative” sexual relationship depicted in the film “Fifty Shades of Grey.”
“The50ShadesPledge” contains online tool kits to spark family discussions, including sample tweets, graphics and information that can be shared.
At its core is a nine-point pledge to reject the premise of the controversial film about a sadomasochistic relationship between a naive college student and an older businessman.
“Girls are accepting this stuff — that it’s normal to feel undignified, that it’s normal to feel pain,” said Renée Doyle, president of the Minnesota Child Protection League.
“We want to use this as an opportunity to develop a dialogue between parents and children,” said Doyle. “Violence is violence. Consent doesn’t make it right.”
The Minnesota campaign is one of several that have sprung up in response to the blockbuster film, along with theater protests.
A Twitter and Facebook campaign, #50dollarsnot50shades, was launched by a professor at Boston’s Wheelock College and encourages supporters to donate $50 to a domestic abuse shelter and boycott the film. A “Fifty Shades Is Domestic Violence” campaign was launched in Britain.
The film has sparked global debate, with protesters claiming it glamorizes abusive relationships and supporters arguing it does no such thing.
The nonprofit overseeing the campaign in Minnesota has its own controversial past. It led the charge against the Minnesota State High School League’s decision to allow transgender athletes to play on the team they identify with. The group is part of a broader Christian movement to boycott the film.
The campaign’s website has averaged 1,000 hits a day, said Doyle. Joiners start by pledging: “I reject the lie that it is OK to let others hurt me for their own pleasure.”
Said Doyle: “This is an opportunity to talk about what love is — and isn’t — and how you treat one another.”