A new Gillette ad showing a father teaching his transgender son how to shave has been viewed more than 1 million times on Facebook and ignited a social media debate.
The ad shows Toronto’s Samson Bonkeabantu Brown – who was born female – talking about transgenderism.
“I always knew I was different,” Brown says. “I didn’t know that there was a term for the type of person that I was. I went into my transition just wanting to be happy. I’m glad I’m at the point where I’m able to shave.”
The ad then shows Brown standing over a bathroom sink, holding a razor. Brown’s father gives instructions: “Now, don’t be scared. Shaving is about being confident.”
Brown says: “I’m at the point in my manhood where I’m actually happy.”
“It’s not just myself transitioning,” Brown says. “It’s everybody around me transitioning.”
Viewers then read a message from Gillette: “Whenever, wherever, however it happens. Your first shave is special.”
About 3,000 people commented on Gillette’s Facebook page. Some were positive.
“Been buying your products for the past few years,” one person wrote… you’ve just earned yourself a loyal customer for LIFE!!!”
Others, though, said Gillette should have stayed on the sidelines in the transgender debate.
“I won't be buying Gillette ever again,” one person wrote.
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.
Photo courtesy: Gillette
Video courtesy: Gillette
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, The Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.