Remember that anti-abortion billboard featuring a six-year-old girl and the comment “The most dangerous place for an African-American is in the womb”? It hung in Soho, to many people’s discontent in February, until the ad agency pulled it after people called it offensive to women and minorities (and, apparently, workers in the restaurant below were harassed about it). At that time, we learned that Tricia Fraser, the mom of the little girl, had been unaware her daughter’s image was being used for the ad. Now the New York Times reports that Fraser is suing Texas group Life Always, the folks behind the ad, calling “the billboard racist and the use of Ms. Fraser’s daughter’s image defamatory.”
Of course, as we learned in February, Fraser had signed her kids up with a modeling agency, had them photographed, and signed release forms for the photos. Life Always told Fox5 at the time, “The image was properly licensed through a reputable stock image service.” This doesn’t make the billboard right or the use of the girl’s image particularly decent or good, but does Fraser have legal standing? We shall see.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 27, 2011