Something to Think About

"I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love."
- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

Friday, July 19, 2013

Conservative Group Calls for the End of Sexy Salad Dressing Ads

Have you seen the latest ads for Kraft Zesty Italian Dressing? They feature a man called the Zesty Guy who often appears bare-chested. Well, to be honest, I'm not sure that's what Kraft calls him.  I think that's what the media and/or public have dubbed him.  It seems like an apt description to me, but that's neither here nor there.

The commercials use an attractive man and a bit of humor to sell the salad dressing.  Here's one of the television commercials so you can see what I'm talking about.

Kraft is using the same actor, Anderson Davis, in its print ads for their dressing and one of these ads has the conservative group, One Million Moms, up in arms!  The photo shows the Zesty Guy laying on a picnic blanket, apparently naked, with a corner of the blanket covering up his...  jewelry. You can see the ad in this article.

The group claims that "Christians will not be able to buy Kraft dressings or any of their products until they clean up their advertising"! 

Seriously, One Million Moms?  
  1. The ad in question was printed in People magazine- a magazine that prints celebrity news and gossip. It also runs a yearly "Sexiest Man Alive" feature.  It is not, by any means, a conservative magazine.  I wonder how many seriously conservative women even read People magazine. Frankly, I'm surprised you even found out about the ad in the first place!
  2. In case you've been hidden under a rock all your life, I'll enlighten you to the fact that sex sells. This article in Business Insider mentions 13 brands that use sexy models to sell their products and this list is not exhaustive. Take a look around you and you will see that all sorts of products are advertised with sexy ads.
  3. If you don't like the ads, then don't purchase the product.  The best way to have your "voice" be heard is to discontinue purchasing the product.  Yes, writing a letter might get some attention, but the real motivation behind commercials is to draw attention to the product and, hopefully, to sell it.  If they fail to do this, then the company will try some other way to draw attention to their product.
  4. Have you ever considered that, by making a big deal about this, you are actually helping Kraft by alerting people to their ads?  I hadn't seen any of these ads before I heard about your campaign but I have now!  Now, I'm not going to start to purchase Kraft dressings any time soon - but that's because I like to make my own.  If I do purchase dressings, however, I might subconsciously be drawn to Kraft Zesty Italian.  You never know! That Zesty Guy certainly is attractive!

I think that One Million Moms' campaigns to write letters and boycott companies often seem to draw more attention to the companies and might have the opposite effect to what they intend. I wonder if they consider that at all. I find that am generally more interested in supporting some of the companies they target than boycotting them.

This group is overly concerned with sex, in my opinion, and dislikes when gay couples are portrayed as normal human beings as evidenced by previous attacks on JCPenney. They didn't like the Mother's Day ads with two mothers,  the Father's Day ads with two fathers or that they hired Ellen DeGeneres as a spokesperson because she is gay. Because of this, I'm offended by them. Thank goodness they don't really number in the millions as their name would imply or they might actually be a force to be reckoned with.

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