You know you're in Rogue country when you have to defend yourself by saying, "I am not a bigot."
That's part of what Troy Hake, owner of the ironically named Outsidepride.com, Inc., allegedly wrote to customers of his Salem grass seed company when he emailed them recently to express outrage over openly gay behavior on episodes of two CBS shows that aired Aug. 6.
Hake denies writing the Aug. 8 email and tells the Rogue desk he thinks an employee may have written it under Hake's name.
The original letter complains about watching "two men hugging" on a recent Cold Case episode, and about two women making out on Without a Trace. The emailer was particularly appalled that one of the fathers on the latter show—gasp!—accepted his daughter's behavior.
The letter lambastes CBS for "promoting" homosexuality as the "norm" and entreats Outsidepride's "tens of thousand [sic]" customers to complain to the network.
CBS Television spokesman Phil Gonzales says the network has received "a small number" of complaints in the last week in response to Outsidepride's letter.
Meantime, a "handful" of people have complained to Basic Rights Oregon about the letter, according to Rebekah Kassell, spokeswoman for the state's largest gay-rights group. Jacquelyn England of San Rafael, Calif., alerted BRO to the original email and also complained to Outsidepride. The company's emailed response to England says it "did not intend to personally attack anyone" but doesn't deny the authenticity of the original letter.
Hake told WW last week that he has set up a firewall to prevent future fraudulent emails but says he doesn't know how the letter was sent and doesn't really care. And he hasn't responded to a follow-up email asking whether he has rescinded the letter and whether he agrees with the opinions it expresses.
Read the full Aug. 8 email at www.wweek.com/media/7888.pdf.