Officials from the L.A. School District are outraged by a local football team’s participation in a photo shoot with Sasha Baron Cohen. The photos of Cohen cavorting with members of the Birmingham high school football team are part of GQ‘s current cover story, which features a slideshow of Cohen engaged in various ridiculous stunts in his guise as Bruno, the gay Austrian fashionista.
I’m mostly over Cohen’s bathroom humor at this point, but I still don’t see anything degading about the school’s participation in the photo shoot. If anything, it shows that this football team is more enlightened than most that they were able to see the humor in posing with a half-naked, flamboyant fashionista.
But the school superintendent found the stunt nothing short of humiliating. “We’ve allowed our students to be used,” he said, “and not in the most glamorous circumstances, either.” He and other officials have vowed to determine and possibly discipline the parties who okayed the photo shoot.
I wonder if these officials would have been so outraged if a different school group–say, cheerleaders–had posed with Cohen in his guise as Borat. Making fun of Kazakhstan is one thing, but to suggest that a football team would ever frolick with the likes of a flaming gay man is quite another.
Photo: Mark Seliger/GQ