Words: Jamie Tabberer; picture: provided/YouTube
A Change.org petition started by a straight dad-of-three calling for Cadbury's to save and further spread a Creme Egg advert featuring two men kissing has amassed 40,546 signatures in five days.
It follows a petition calling for the ad to be banned started earlier this month, which has so far been signed by 59,723 people.
The ad, which shows real-life couple Callum Sterling and Dale K Moran sharing a Creme Egg, was released last month.
"I can't even believe I'm starting this sort of petition in 2021"
Simon Harris, the man who created the petition, today told Attitude: "I decided to start it because it's not enough anymore to turn over the channel if you don't like watching two men kiss."
Simon, who identifies as straight and male, added: "Demanding a 'ban' is basically saying 'this is not OK', no matter how you dress it up with other excuses."
Harris, from South Essex, says he's yet to hear from Cadbury's, Sterling, Moran or the creators of the first petition.
Simon and his family (Picture: Provided)
Harris, who runs the Facebook page Man Behaving Dadly, and wife Rachael are currently expecting their fourth child.
He continued: "I can't even believe I'm starting this sort of petition in 2021."
Of the huge reaction, the 37-year-old said: "I think it shows that there are plenty of people who are prepared to stand up to almost prehistoric attitudes, such as the fact that the original petition uses the word 'grooming', knowing full well that this word has negative connotations."
The original Citizen.go petition states: "By choosing to feature a same-sex couple, Cadbury’s are clearly hoping to cause controversy and escape criticism, by claiming that any objections must be rooted in ‘homophobia’, but members of the LGBT community have also expressed their dislike of this campaign.
"Cadbury’s should not be seeking to hide under cover of LGBT rights to conduct a campaign which sexually objectifies individuals. If the couple in question were heterosexual, the advertisement would likely be prohibited, given the sexually explicit and graphic nature of the kiss."
It adds: "Exposing children to sexualised content constitutes a form of grooming. It is well-known that children will often copy what they see on the screen."
Cadbury provided the following statement when approached by Attitude for comment: “Cadbury has always been a progressive brand that spreads a message of inclusion, whether it is through its products or brand campaigns. We are proud of our Golden Goobilee advert which celebrates the many ways that everyone can enjoy a Cadbury Creme Egg. To illustrate this and showcase the joy our products bring, a clip of a real life couple sharing a Cadbury Creme Egg was included in the advert.”