'Real men provide' billboard provokes debate, protest - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

'Real men provide' billboard provokes debate, protest

It's not clear who paid for the billboard's message. (Source: Facebook) It's not clear who paid for the billboard's message. (Source: Facebook)

WINSTON-SALEM, NC (RNN) - A billboard sign off Interstate 40 in North Carolina is turning heads.

The sign reads "Real men provide. Real women appreciate it," but many are not appreciating the sentiment.

Molly Grace, a boutique owner in Winston-Salem, told WFMY that the billboard’s message is “misogynistic and outdated.”

“It's absolutely, absolutely insulting to single mothers, to women who have careers whether they are small careers or big careers,” Grace said.

A protest, organized by Grace, is planned for Sunday at 11 a.m. at a location to be determined. A Facebook event page was created and updates are posted there.  

"I take it also as a very deliberate jab at women who demand equality and demand to be seen as equals and are vocal. So to me it's also a very blatant about wanting to silence women and tell them to just accept the way that things are," Grace said.

Grace also said that the demonstration is not politically motivated, but that mindset should not be acceptable.

"We are NOT protesting that the sign is capable of existing, or the people who put it up, or the ad agency, or the right to put it up," the event page noted. "We are protesting patriarchy and sexism, and that this antiquated way of thinking about women exists at all."

Although Whiteheart Outdoor Advertising owns the billboard, it’s not clear who paid for the sign.

According to the Triad City Beat, Bill Whiteheart said his company is not sponsoring the message but believes in the group’s right to deliver a message to the public, citing "freedom of speech."

Whiteheart, who is a former Republican member of the Forsyth County Commission in North Carolina, said that he’s contacted the group, and they plan to make an announcement in the future.

He said that he does not condone or support the message of the billboard. 

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