Running Ads For The Other Side

From the comments section of the latest Rightroots post

“Nothing on Rightroots (but good luck on that). Just want to say, heavy props on advertising Sam Harris’s book on your site; these days, that kind of thing takes guts. And if there’s one thing morally/intellectually destroying this nation/the world, it’s organized religion. No question of that.

You rarely see even liberal sites advertise a book like Sam Harris’s, for fear of (Heaven forfend!) offending Christians, Jews, etc. I know that more than a few Christians and Jews visit your site, so again, props on the courage to fly that banner…because I truly believe that if you get rid of the religious madness, you get rid of the world’s madness, and open doors to true peace.

by Nathan_Hammersmith”

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The ad he is talking about is Letter To A Christian Nation, an anti-religious book by Sam Harris.

Now, first of all, although Right Wing News is a great place to advertise, I’m not exactly sure that they decided to run an ad for that particular book on RWN.

After all, I’m a conservative Southern Baptist, who doesn’t believe in evolution, and I run a blog friendly to social conservatives that I assume has an audience that is probably 90+% Christian. So, advertising a book like, “Letter To A Christian Nation,” on RWN would be sort of like Joe Lieberman trying to sell a book on the Daily Kos.

That being said, I’m also a capitalist who generally doesn’t mind running ads featuring people or products that I don’t agree with. Still, sometimes there’s a very thin line between what ads I run and what ads get rejected.

Running an ad for the UN? It was a tough call. An ad for a 9/11 conspiracy group? It was a tough call. This ad? it was a tough call…and yes, sometimes I do turn ads down. I’ve actually rejected a couple of websites that wanted to advertise because they were racist, one website because it was homophobic, and an ad for a book because it was promoting bizarro world conspiracy theories about Bill and Hillary Clinton.

Long story short: Even though this book really isn’t my cup of tea and I have some reservations about it, I’m willing to run an ad for it. Maybe that’s a mistake, maybe not, but it’s in keeping with how I’ve traditionally handled advertisers….

PS: Also, I donated 10% of the money I made from running the ad to the Salvation Army because I thought it would be deliciously ironic to give money earned from advertising a book like that to a Christian organization that can put it to good use.

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