Some people are accusing the CBS television station of subtly mocking Christians in a new Super Bowl XLVII advertisement, which was broadcast several times during an AFC Wild Card playoff game on Sunday.
The ad features Neil Patrick Harris, an openly gay actor and star of the hit comedy series "How I Met Your Mother," wearing football eye black which has the date of this year's big game – Feb. 3, 2013 – written on it.
WND.com reports the ad, which ran during Sunday's game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Indianapolis Colts, is reminiscent of the eye black once worn by New York Jets quarterback Tim Tebow. Tebow, a popular Christian athlete, famously wore eye black with Bible references written on them during the games he played for the University of Florida Gators.
The report suggests CBS is trying to "mimic Tim Tebow's style of trumpeting messages" through the use of eye black, and quotes an anonymous fan of the game who said the ad is "pushing the gay agenda" and "mocking Christians at the same time" by allowing Harris to be featured in it.
After the accusations against CBS began making the social media rounds, many people took to Twitter and Facebook to express their views on either side of the issue.
"Neil Patrick Harris u want tolerance, respect, for your gay life style. Where is yours for Tebow?" Twitter user Georgianna said in a post.
"Now I really like Neil Patrick Harris and Tim Tebow but CBS crossed the line in this SuperBowl promo," tweeted Isabelle Terry.
While some see the ad as an attack on both their religion and who the man who may arguably be the most popular Christian athlete in the U.S., others think such accusations against the television station are a stretch.
"Oh, come on. This is really grabbing for straws," Mikey Rox wrote on his Facebook page. "Perhaps they used [Harris] because he's the star of one of the network's biggest shows and they want to cross-promote. I don't see how this 'mocks' Tebow or pushes the 'gay agenda' in any way."
Queerty, a pro-gay agenda news outlet, also criticized WND.com's article, pointing out that singer Beyoncé Knowles, who is slated to perform in this year's Super Bowl halftime show, previously posted an image of herself to her Tumblr account in which she is also seen wearing eye black with the game's date written on it.
No one accused the television station of "pushing a fierce diva agenda" after the Beyoncé photos emerged, states Queerty reporter Lester Brathwaite, who calls the complaints "an imaginary attack on an entire religion."
The Christian Post was unable to reach a CBS spokesperson for additional comments before publication time.