The Archie Comic books series which introduced the comics first openly gay character, Kevin Keller in 2010, is being met with protests at local Toys ‘R’ Us Stores. A grassroots activist group OneMillionMoms.com has sent a letter asking the retail toy chain to pull the Archie comic that features a gay wedding off it’s shelves.
In an open letter to Toys ‘R’ Us OneMillionMoms wrote: “As a mother and a member of OneMillionMoms.com, I am extremely disappointed to learn that select Toys ‘R’ Us stores are now selling ‘Archie’ comic books with a same-sex wedding displayed on the front cover. I am referring to the ones where the front cover reads “Just Married” with two men marrying, one wearing a service uniform.
I am aware that Toys ‘R’ Us employees do not actually set up the displays; they leave this up to the vendor. Your company should be aware of the merchandise being sold in your stores nonetheless. These comic books are displayed at the front checkout counters so they are highly visible to employees, managers, customers and children.
Unfortunately, children are now being exposed to same-sex marriage in your toy store. This is the last place a parent would expect to be confronted with questions from their children on topics that are too complicated for them to understand. Issues of this nature are being introduced too early and too soon, which is becoming extremely common and unnecessary.
A trip to the toy store turns into a premature discussion on sexual orientation and is completely uncalled for. Toys ‘R’ Us should be more responsible in the products they carry.
Please remove all the same-sex “Just Married – Archie” comic books immediately from your shelves. My decision to shop in your stores depends on it. I look forward to hearing from you regarding my concern.”
In answer to the request, John Goldwater CEO of Archie Comic said: “Riverdale is a safe, welcoming place that does not judge anyone. It’s an idealized version of America that will hopefully become reality someday. We’re sorry the American Family Association/OneMillionMoms.com feels so negatively about our product, but they have every right to their opinion, just like we have the right to stand by ours.”
The comic featuring the gay wedding of character Kevin Keller and his partner is one of the bestselling volumes in the Archie series.