Sportswear giants Nike and Adidas have jumped on the gender-identity bandwagon with ads celebrating male-born athletes in women’s sports, but Ilan Srulovicz’s company is doing the opposite.
Egard Watches, a Florida-based boutique timepiece and jewelry firm founded by Mr. Srulovicz, posted a digital ad last week called “What Is a Woman” that takes issue with biological males in women’s athletics.
“How long do we sit idly by and not stand for the sacred value of womanhood as it loses all meaning?” says the two-minute spot. “Because we believe that womanhood is a birthright.”
Mr. Srulovicz, an actor and filmmaker known for challenging the woke corporate culture, said in a statement that the ad seeks to stand up for women.
“We crafted an ad campaign that celebrates our grandmothers, mothers, sisters, aunts, and daughters, and everything they represent to paint a stark contrast to the lies we are all being told,” said the Egard CEO. “The push for Transgender rights is no longer about equality, it’s now a cleverly-crafted lie that comes at the expense of women. We ask all Americans to join us to speak truth.”
The message flies squarely in the face of the woke corporate zeitgeist.
More than 200 companies have signed the Human Rights Campaign’s statement this year opposing “anti-LGBTQ+ bills,” which include measures barring male-born athletes from girls’ and women’s sports.
Companies signing the statement include makers of athletic apparel such as Converse, Lululemon and Nike, the world’s largest sports brand.
Nike has left no doubt about its position on the issue. In November, Nike released a Spanish-language ad featuring women’s soccer player Mara Gomez, who has been billed as Argentina’s first professional transgender player, as part of its Play New campaign.
Nike was credited with providing “generous support” for an ad airing last month by the Gender Cool Project, an LGBTQ youth advocacy group, featuring young teens playing sports.
“Transgender kids are part of your team,” says the final caption, which also shows the Nike swoosh.
Adidas, the world’s second-largest brand, released a Spanish-language ad in February featuring Tiffany Abreu, touted as the first transgender player in women’s Superliga professional volleyball.
The Washington Times has reached out to Adidas and Nike for comment.
Mr. Surlovicz, who is also an actor and a filmmaker, said his video seeks to fill the void as corporations increasingly shift to the left.
“I think there’s this huge culture war taking place where there’s a certain percentage of the culture that wants to do away with the concept of gender entirely, and a lot of corporations are very woke nowadays, and they think that’s who their best clientele is,” he told The Times. “And then there’s the silent percent of the country that strongly believes that these things do have value and do have meaning, and no one’s fighting for their side.”
This isn’t his first politically incorrect ad. In 2019, Egard posted a video called “What Is a Man” in response to the Gillette commercial against “toxic masculinity.”
In June 2020, Egard ran an ad called “Speak Truth” in support of law enforcement at the height of Black Lives Matter protests and calls to defend the police, for which Fox Nation awarded Mr. Srulovicz its 2020 Award for Courage.
“I have a bit of a history of making ads in support of what I believe,” Mr. Srulovicz said.
He also has a history of getting his videos suppressed. The ad, posted on April 2, had only 15,500 views as of Monday. He said YouTube flagged it as “election advertising.”
“They’re letting it play, but it’s not getting any organic searches,” Mr. Srulovicz said. “The view count doesn’t make any sense. It goes up and then it comes down again, and then they’ve restricted us from advertising across all Google platforms. So if you can’t advertise an ad and they close down any organic searches for it, your ad is not going to get any views.”
The Egard video does not mention political parties or candidates but does include the viral March 22 exchange between Sen. Marsha Blackburn, Tennessee Republican, and Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson over the definition of a woman.
The Senate last week confirmed Judge Jackson’s nomination to the Supreme Court. The Washington Times has reached out for comment to Google, which owns YouTube.
Mr. Srulovicz said the same thing happened with his “Speak Truth” ad.
“That’s an ad just humanizing police, and it was considered political advertising,” Mr. Sruloviz said. “When in comparison there were ads literally showing police as White supremacists, and that was completely fine.”
Among those who have seen “What Is a Woman,” the reaction has been “incredibly positive,” he said.
“There’s been a lot of women, a lot of men, a lot of fathers and brothers who have said, ‘It’s so nice to see someone stand up for my daughter,’” Mr. Srulovicz said. “There has been a little bit of the hate mail — that’s always expected. But compared to the positive responses, it’s not relevant to us.”