WHAT: A political ad opposing Texas’s SB 6, which is one of the infamous “bathroom bill” laws popping up in state legislatures around the nation.
WHO: Richard Linklater, of Boyhood, Before Sunrise, and Dazed and Confused, directed the ad for the ACLU of Texas and Legacy Community Health, with GSD&M.
WHY WE CARE: It’s not every day that an A-list director steps into the local political fray–and certainly not in Texas. But the “bathroom bill” laws are deeply controversial, with the arts, business, and creative communities standing against them whenever they pop up. If you watched the NBA All-Star Weekend in New Orleans, for example, you were watching an event that would have happened in North Carolina, until the league moved it after the state passed its own anti-LGBT bathroom law.
Linklater’s ad is warm, wry, and weird, which means it’s very Linklater. An assembly of Texans of both the King of the Hill and the “Keep Austin Weird” variety, explain the problems with laws that discriminate against transgender people by insisting that they need to prove their genitals meet state legislative standards. They do so, of course, with bathroom puns–“I pee with LGBT,” “take a seat to make a stand,” and “you’ve gotta spray it to say it”–all of which only serves to highlight the absurdity of passing laws around who pees where.