Argentinian Banco Provincia is attempting to blow minds, y'all. In what might be the first mainstream commercial to normalize transpeople, this television spot shows the Argentinian bank not just acknowledging transpeople's non-stereotypical existence, but makes the statement that discrimination against transpeople is unjust and comes from a place of fear and ignorance. The commercial appeals to the viewers' emotionality and states that all people are welcome in its institution. That's a pretty progressive stance for a bank, don't ya think?
Perhaps I would feel more cynical about this ad if I hadn't also read this article two months ago about how "the government of Argentina, an increasingly welcoming South American country when it comes to lesbians and gays, officially ended its prohibition on open service in the armed forces." This commercial was released in 2007, and it may reflect this welcoming sentiment, which is paving the way for many changes in Argentina's policies regarding trans issues. And really, until you see the bank logo at the end, it's difficult to discern whether this commercial is a PSA or an advertisement.
Of course, it is an advertisement, which means the underlying motivation for the bank is to increase its customer base. Given that this commercial shows some investment in the transgender community, does it really matter what the impetus is for a commercial that encourages transphobic people to reconsider their lack of compassion? Media is shown to influence public opinion, and a commercial like this has the ability to make an impact beyond its marketing goal.
Perhaps you want to tell Banco Provincia your thoughts about its step toward trans-inclusion, or send a link to this commercial to your own bank!
Shout out to Brittany, who tipped me off to this video!