Patterico's Pontifications


Super Bowl Ads In The Land Of The Easily Offended

Filed under: General — Dana @ 9:29 am

[guest post by Dana]

Super Bowl Sunday. For a great number of Americans, it’s all about the … commercials. Because really, football?? Anyway, this year finds protests and petition campaigns mounting against those ads already deemed offensive. Unfortunately, some advertisers like Go Daddy have already caved. Because puppies:

And, proving that America is dangerously close to losing its sense of humor, NASCAR’s ad is also facing a petition to pressure the company to pull their commercial. The spot pokes fun at a nation so soft that eating gluten is considered a dangerous activity . Protesting are those suffering from Celiac disease:

NBC is running a Super Bowl ad that makes fun of those who are gluten-free. It implies that we’re soft…we’re weak…we’re part of America’s problem. When all we’re trying to do is manage our disease. Celiac can be a true pain. The media is not helping and this petition is get NBC to see the light of day.

The company yielded to demands and will air an edited version of the commercial during the game.

Today may bring more opportunity for yet more grievance groups to air their, well, grievances against companies airing spots that might offend. Such groups may or may not include:

The technologically-challenged.

Small-breasted women.

The fashion-challenged (or the non-vapid people of America). It could go either way.

Girls with short hair.

(I won’t post the actual videos in case some of you prefer seeing them run during the game.)

And so it goes this Super Bowl game day in America, land of the easily-offended.


73 Responses to “Super Bowl Ads In The Land Of The Easily Offended”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  2. Today’s NASCAR has nothing to brag about, either. When a couple of kids renting my parents’ garage could strip down and soup up Plymouth Fury and race it on weekends, that was NASCAR.

    nk (dbc370)

  3. The question of the day on that Carl’s Jr ad is…Are they real ? Inquiring minds need to know. Now, Kate Upton is the real deal.

    Plastic surgeons are envious. Mother Nature can’t be fooled.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  4. i like puppies and gluten but not together

    that’s more of an obama thing

    happyfeet (831175)

  5. The puppy ad is not nice. If they were going to go that far, they should have made that last line “Because we just sold you to a Chinese restaurant”.

    No, really, it’s not nice. I’m boycotting GoDaddy.

    nk (dbc370)

  6. i still don’t understand what the complaint about the puppy ad is.
    not that it really matters, in five years there will be no Super Bowl as the
    game itself is institutionally insensitive to so many groups.

    seeRpea (9a7f2e)

  7. I think GoDaddy would be crazy to run that commercial. It’s in very poor taste. Some sick twits at the ad agency need to get fired. Edgy & creepy aren’t your best sales tools.

    As for glutens: did you know the FDA is having to crack down on products that never have glutens from claiming “gluten-free” to drive sales. Like, say, cough drops. The “Cootie” Principle.

    I think I need a Carl’s burger.

    I am continually amazed at what Danny Trejo shows up in.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  8. How long before Papa co-Mama Kardashian shows up in ads.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  9. In other news, I understand Air Supply is going to participate in the half-time activities, in case there are any problems with inflation on the sidelines.

    Bill M (906260)

  10. Good one, Bill.

    I did some talking heads on TV speculate that GoDaddy did this on purpose, to attract more attention than a simple noncontroversial ad would.

    kishnevi (a5d1b9)

  11. Wasn’t clear enough…the idea being GoDaddy planned two commercials, intending the first one to attract the fuss, and then a second ad to actually run during the game.

    kishnevi (a5d1b9)

  12. Just another Santa Cruz Sunday…

    Hope it’s a good game!

    Colonel Haiku (39259d)

  13. Kevin, I think that no one ever tells Danny Trejo “no” when he wants to be on screen.

    Would you?

    It is amazing to see how people are offended by commercials. Heck, I think many commercials are offensive, but I don’t have any right to say the commercials shouldn’t be there.

    I mean, I don’t like football. Should I then protest what other people enjoy?

    I would love to hear Nick Offerman respond to the editing. He is like the honeybadger.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  14. Are Benji and its sequels (and a whole bunch of other movies) banned now?

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  15. Is GoDaddy a Bain Capital subsidiary by any chance?

    nk (dbc370)

  16. The Carl Jr ad linked in Dana’s post has been criticized for hurting feminists. I doubt Carl Jr cares since it has a long history of sexy ads. They’re similar to the recent Game of War commercials and Super Bowl teaser with Kate Upton.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  17. Glutens (there are two) are a fad. A made-up First World problem. Like Prozac-treatable depression. How come nobody had heard of this nonsense five years ago even?

    nk (dbc370)

  18. Carl Karcher must be spinning in his grave… a very strait laced Catholic family when he was still sunny side of the turf.

    Colonel Haiku (39259d)

  19. … and it must be jelly cuz jam don’t shake like dat!

    Colonel Haiku (39259d)

  20. nk,

    17,739 people signed the NASCAR petition.

    I think about all of the gluten-free children getting bullied for being “different”, when all they want to do is feel better and fit in. I think about all of the people who have gotten sick at restaurants because the kitchen and/or the staff do not take us seriously. I think about all of those walking around undiagnosed and suffering because they only listen to what is in the media. I think about all of the people in the past who have died prematurely when going gluten-free MAY have been their saving grace.

    This petition is for them.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  21. On a more serious note, some would argue (The Revenge of Conscience, J. Budziszewski) that man’s conscience is never fully suppressed and must play out somewhere, if there is not moral outrage against things that deserve it, then the moral outrage must find some other expression.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  22. Puppies are as American as apple pie, Chevrolet and dead cats in the middle of the road

    Colonel Haiku (39259d)

  23. @ nk,

    if they were going to go that far, they should have made that last line “Because we just sold you to a Chinese restaurant”.

    All-things-cuddly lover here: I think it’s a pretty long stretch from we’ve just sold you to we’ve sold you for someone’s dinner. A very, very long stretch, indeed. That beings said, I also believe the commercial is evidence of how a very dry humor does not always play well at a visual. The script may have sounded dry and funny in a table read, but when the visual of a real-life, cute and oh so adorable puppy brings it to life, then people’s heartstrings get seriously played with and subsequently, the commercial elicits an entirely unwanted and unintentional impact.

    I still believe they should not have caved. Let the market decide their fate.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  24. Like Prozac-treatable depression. How come nobody had heard of this nonsense five years ago even?

    The depression epidemic was well covered in The Antidepressant Era by David Healy, a psychiatrist who was fired from a job in Canada for questioning the overuse of antidepressants. I;ve seen him speak and he has a series of slides for antidepressant drugs going back to the 1960s when they first came out. The early ads showed women (always women) who looked depressed. In later years th ads changed with the women looking less depressed until the modern ads show a happy smiling young woman emphasizing that this is normal life.

    There are other books but his story is compelling.

    The gluten free thing is an other scam like GMO foods. Somebody did a survey and showed people (80% of them) would buy DNA free foods. DNA, of course, is in all food. Unless you eat RNA viruses.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  25. Mike K,

    Petition signers would beg to disagree: I suffer from Celiac Disease and there is nothing funny about it. Would we make fun of Diabetes or Lupus? Celiac is an autoimmune disease just like them. Gluten free is our medicine.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  26. re #24

    seeRpea (9a7f2e)

  27. There is a severe form of gluten allergy that has been known along time (celiac sprue),
    the current craze to blame everything on it, that is questionable.

    I will say that when we were children, peanut butter was a staple and everybody ate it and no one died from peanut allergies.

    So it seems that some things are different

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  28. diabetes lol

    happyfeet (831175)

  29. Re the Carl’s Jr. commercial: I don’t find that to be a very attractive hamburger, personally.

    Beldar (fa637a)

  30. MD, it’s becoming increasingly clear that our immune system is “educated” by the environment around us. In particular, the microbes that live within us, as well as allergens around us, are part of this process.

    This goes beyond the “Hygiene Hypothesis” idea.

    I think the author goes a bit far, but Blaser wrote a good book recently about this:

    NYT article:

    Also a podcast for those without much time.

    So it may be that we live too far from our “natural state,” and are…maybe…too clean?

    Again, Marty Blaser is certainly, um, opinionated. But he is very smart.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  31. I suffer from Celiac Disease and there is nothing funny about it.

    “Serological studies indicate that evidence of coeliac disease (CD) exists in about 1% of all children, but we lack estimates of current diagnostic patterns among children and how they vary by socioeconomic group.”

    Interestingly enough, celiac disease seems to be related to environment.

    “Among 2 063 421 children, we identified 1247 CD diagnoses, corresponding to an overall CD incidence of 11.9 per 100 000 person-years, which was similar across the UK countries and higher in girls than in boys. We found a gradient of CD diagnosis across socioeconomic groups, with the rate of diagnosis being 80% higher in children from the least-deprived areas than in those from the most-deprived areas (incident rate ratio 1.80, ”

    Another “whiteness disease.”

    Sorry but 1% incidence does not deserve the publicity that celiac disease (or non-tropical sprue, (as it was called before the hysteria) gets these days. Avoid gluten if you have the disease. It’s not exactly fatal, you know.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  32. Thanks, Simon

    As you know, it’s been obvious since the immune system was first being understood that our body’s response is shaped by what we are in contact with or not in contact with, as the case may be (e.g., chickenpox and mono being milder diseases when encountered as a child). The curious part is the indirect nature of some of these things. Traditionally once would have thought about exposure to antigens that mimic something else, not how microbes in your system alter something that makes one end up with an allergy to peanuts.

    I’ve wondered offhand what is it in our environment in addition to simply better nutrition that causes girls to enter puberty earlier, for one thing.

    I think people have been spoiled by our scientific and technological advances, thinking every problem should be solvable and every solution without a downside. I am sure antibiotics have been used when not necessary, often because it was easier for the doc to give them than argue with a patient or parent why they were not necessary,
    but I bet we also see fewer people with hearing loss from recurrent and chronic otitis, fewer carpenters dying from cellulitis from a splinter, etc., etc., as well.

    MD in Philly (f9371b)

  33. I think people have been spoiled by our scientific and technological advances, thinking every problem should be solvable and every solution without a downside.

    I think it goes further than that: because of scientific and technological advances, people automatically assume that every health issue and malady is identifiable and known, and therefore diagnosable, followed by a solution that will have no downside to it… I learned through hardship that it pays to remember how much is still unknown about the human body versus what is known in terms of things that can go wrong. (This after receiving a gross misdiagnosis from my former internist. He attempted to wiggle his way out of the mess by loftily explaining to me the unfortunate lack of insight into the mysteries of the human body.In spite of his miscalculation, I think there was some merit to the observation, but most people expect their doctors will know everything.)

    Dana (8e74ce)

  34. Dana@33 You are perfectly correct…I have an autoimmune disease (Crohn’s) and have lived at the borderline of what we know and what we do not know for 25 years now. They know quite well what is wrong, but little on how to get it back to right. Just how to manage it, rather imperfectly.

    kishnevi (a5d1b9)

  35. Kishnevi, I am sorry to hear that. It’s not an easy disease to manage.

    The idea of training one’s immune system can get weird, fast. As in:

    Or more technically:

    I’m conflicted about this.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  36. I am toasty inside looking out at the blizzard in the blue hour. No cars, no people, no animals. It’s just beautiful and pristine.

    elissa (cf2887)

  37. Offense will be taken.

    JD (86a5eb)

  38. Kevin, I think that no one ever tells Danny Trejo “no” when he wants to be on screen.

    Would you?

    Danny is actually an acquaintance of mine, and he’s really a nice guy. If you were to ask him though whether he’d pick quality or quantity, he’d say quantity every time.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  39. That’s really cool, Kevin! My kids loved him in the “Spy Kids” series.

    Heck, I managed to get Nick Offerman to sign a couple of Petri dishes for my lab. I have street cred with some of the students.

    But I don’t know Danny Trejo! Glad he is a good guy. He had a rough life growing up; bet he is awfully grateful.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  40. Good for you, elissa.
    Be safe.

    mg (31009b)

  41. Nascar Thats stands for ignorant southern white trash car right? What do you call 42 white guys chasinging a homosexual answer nascar. What do you call it when they catch the homosexual answer jeff gordon doesn’t win!

    critic (9e5ff0)

  42. I still believe they should not have caved. Let the market decide their fate.

    I think it was more like a bigger boss heard the controversy, looked at the commercial and said “You are out of your every-loving minds! Pull it.”

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  43. Kishnevi,

    I, too, live with auto-immune and rely on a little pink pill every day to keep thing managed. They’re just strange afflictions, these auto-immune issues: they pop up at odd times of life with no seeming rhyme or reason,, the ups and downs and instabilities, and the dependence upon certain meds just to keep the body on an even-keel.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  44. Sounds so cozy, Elissa. Was at the market here, wishing I had worn shorts. It was, indeed, that wam.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  45. Simon Jester,

    Those helminthic therapies sound dreadful. However, it’s fascinating to see the possibilities there. Also interesting is the lack of auto-immune in developing countries with poor hygiene (helmon the already being in the system) versus our highly hygiene-conscious first-world. It all makes sense as far as the disparity, but you know, I really don’t want to go without my daily shower. Nor would I want anyone else to, either!

    Dana (8e74ce)

  46. Dana, I am not recommending the “worm cure” quite yet. Scientists are starting to ask the good question, which is what about the worms’ proteins and polysaccharides inform and educate the immune system.

    Though there is a guy who, um, sells worms for people to use. Points for the entrepreneur approach, but still….

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  47. 43. Mine may have started with a vaccination that stirred up my immune system, or I may have it from the time I was a teenager. And I may or may not have inherited it. All are possible, and all three may be wrong.
    My version of your little pink pill is Pentasa, for which CVS charges $800 a month before employer provided insurance kicks in and brings it down to $100 a month. Pentasa is off patent, but there seems to be no generic yet…apparently not enough people like me to make a generic worthwhile.

    kishnevi (3719b7)

  48. Story time with Danny Trejo. The bad words are in Spanish.

    nk (dbc370)

  49. Simon Jester,

    It’s intrresting that the most success seems to come in trials with MS. Why do you think that is? Also, would,auto-immunes that are more difficult to control like lupus less likely to see any impact from the therapy?

    Dana (8e74ce)

  50. MD in Philly (f9371b) — 2/1/2015 @ 1:26 pm

    I’ve wondered offhand what is it in our environment in addition to simply better nutrition that causes girls to enter puberty earlier, for one thing.

    The electric light bulb.

    One comment:

    I believe that years ago on a different thread, someone that certainly wrote knowledge-bly about this situation (in response to someone ranting about girls-early-puberty caused by hormones in meat) stated that studies have shown it is all linked to indoor lighting.

    That ever since electricity was on the scene and indoor lights became mainstream the lack of true darkness at night has caused all sorts of changes in human hormones. The biological clock that triggers puberty relies on a measure of light exposure – with indoor lighting girls are meeting that threshold sooner than they did before. Odd that it wasn’t mentioned in the newspaper articles today that I read.

    It’s linked to he pineal gland.

    Sammy Finkelman (e806a6)

  51. MD in Philly (f9371b) — 2/1/2015 @ 1:26 pm

    I am sure antibiotics have been used when not necessary, often because it was easier for the doc to give them than argue with a patient or parent why they were not necessary,

    They are actually not used enough (although they do kill good bacteria, too]

    In the anthrax attacks some people died because antibiotics weren’t given soon enough. Thngs like that probably happen more often than people think.

    Also, antibiotics are thought by some to one of the reasons for the decline in heart disease since the 1950s (because it be caused by an infection)

    Antibiotic resistance really comes from their use on farm animals. By getting rid of minor infections, they grew more on less food. (for this very reason they might help in viral infections, by reducing nutritional demands on the body)

    And now we have a situation where to process a new drug through the drug application process (which I have said is broken – it’s even more broken in other countries where there are price controls) costs so much that it is just isn’t worthwhile for any pharmaceutical company to develop new antibiotics. They wouldn’t be used much, and even less in an attempt to avoid antibiotic resistance.

    Sammy Finkelman (e806a6)

  52. Dana (8e74ce) — 2/1/2015 @ 3:53 pm

    is the lack of auto-immune in developing countries with poor hygiene

    I think this refers to clean water and uncontaminated food, and maybe your surroundings. There is exposure to too small a variety of different pathogens maybe.

    Sammy Finkelman (e806a6)

  53. At this point in the game, I can without hesitation say that the Liam Neeson ad was not in any way, shape or form, offensive or off putting. Oh, no, no, no….not at all.

    Dana (8e74ce)

  54. Dana (8e74ce) — 2/1/2015 @ 2:06 pm

    but most people expect their doctors will know everything.)

    I don’t. I would like to find a doctor I can respect.

    Sammy Finkelman (e806a6)

  55. Hi Dana:

    Lots of complications regarding helminth therapy. I really do stick with the published studies.

    But once again, we learn that test animals are not people:

    It may actually be all about inflammation and the storm of immunomodulators involved with that process.

    Back to grading papers, I guess. Sigh. New ideas are more interesting. But it’s my job.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  56. Gluten shaming isn’t the major problem of the ad. The ad is awful. Sort of like a liberal’s daydream of what a NASCAR fan would like. Totally clueless.

    Tanny O'Haley (c674c7)

  57. then again, practically anything is involved with, deserves scrutiny,

    narciso (ee1f88)

  58. Ron Swanson was the same. That’s Offerman’s hick shtick.

    nk (dbc370)

  59. I have an autoimmune disease (Crohn’s) and have lived at the borderline of what we know and what we do not know for 25 years now.

    When I was a medical student there was speculation that Crohns was a form of TB of the small bowel since the lesions kind of resemble GI tract TB. Of course that was the old days. Maybe it was the old days.

    The importance of infectious pathogens in Crohn’s disease (CD) is still under debate. Therefore, we examined a panel of potential viral and bacterial pathogens in a large series of CD patients and controls. Archival tissue from 76 patients, 56 with CD and 20 control patients, with normal colon mucosa (n=10) and non-steroid anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)-induced colitis (n=10) were examined using PCR-based detection methods for human cytomegalovirus (CMV), Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), herpes simplex virus 1, 2 (HSV1,2), adenovirus (AD), varicella-zoster virus (VZV), human herpes virus 6 (HHV6), human herpes virus 8 (HHV8), Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (Mtbc), atypical mycobacteria (nM/MG1), including Mycobacterium avium (subspecies paratuberculosis, MAP),

    Maybe there is more to it. I sure don’t know.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  60. Thanks Dr. K. I guess nobody knows. Although there was this, thrown up as related by your link:
    Which attracted my notice because the suspect vaccibe in my case was an MMR booster. Although I suppose if nothing has come of it in 21 years, it was not such a breakthrough.

    kishnevi (a5d1b9)

  61. Mike K,

    I think there could be true with some people who are diagnosed with Crohns when they actually are immune deficient and thus susceptible to infections, especially in the gut. I have a now-deceased older relative who was diagnosed with Crohns and lived with it for 40 years, but never got much relief from the various Crohns-related treatments, medications and surgeries. Near the end of her life, the doctors wanted to try IVIG but the test for IgA showed she was so deficient that she couldn’t take it. That made them doubt the Crohns diagnosis but it was only at her autopsy that they decided she never had Crohns.

    A younger relative also was diagnosed with Crohns and lived with it for about 15 years — with the same poor results — until the Mayo Clinic tested his immune panel. The results led the doctors to believe they both had impaired immune systems that made them susceptible to gut infections that mimicked Crohns. Since then, the younger relative was able to discontinue his Crohns treatment and took antibiotics and gamma globulin. He went from an invalid to a normal life.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  62. My relatives had the same MMR vaccine issues, kishnevi. I think it could be a sign the immune system can’t handle infections or evidence that measles plays a special role in the gut.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  63. Of course, anyone with immune dysfunction can have an unexpected reaction to any immunization. It’s why the CDC often recommends they not be immunized. My experience is that immune-compromised individuals often have very high titers to the vaccine diseases. If you have that concern, I suggest titer testing.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  64. The ads for Dodge and Jeep were amazingly lame. I wasn’t sure what the hell those spots were trying to promote until the last second, if even then. I’m stunned that the corporations and ad agencies responsible for such an extremely costly “way of doing business” — via their undoubtedly highly paid staffers — would dream up such crud. Plus, didn’t both Nissan and Toyota practically duplicate each other’s basic theme, in which parents and their kids are shown growing older together?

    Along with Russell Wilson’s infamous final game-losing play of the Super Bowl, all these strange “do’h!” or foolish characteristics (including Nidal-Hassan-ization affecting the ad industry too) are like a reflection of this flaky era during the first 2 decades of the 21st century.

    Mark (c160ec)

  65. ok, so NASCAR, got the boot, but Nationwide passed muster?

    narciso (ee1f88)

  66. The president’s been busy today. Take your pick. GeorgeWashingtonGate or pinkygate.

    elissa (80e219)

  67. Along with Russell Wilson’s infamous final game-losing play of the Super Bowl,

    I don’t think Wilson is dumb enough to call that play. That had to come from the sidelines. Too cute by a long shot. They had the game won.

    Mike K (90dfdc)

  68. I didn’t think the puppy ad was offensive, just mean. And they had another nicer ad all ready to go! What a coincidence! 😉

    I don’t know much about football, but I knew Seattle threw away the game with that dumb pass.

    Patricia (5fc097)

  69. DRJ, that’s weird. I have low IgA too. What are the chances…

    Patricia (5fc097)

  70. The Tea Party ad was offensive, suggesting that taxation without representation is OK if the tax software is free.

    Then again, “free stuff” worked well for Obama, so WDIKINAD.

    Kevin M (25bbee)

  71. I’m a dog lover, and the GoDaddy ad was one big “meh”.
    I hate Carls Jr but love the ad.
    The NASCAR ad was “meh”.
    Anytime a Leftist comes to town, I have to stock up on the cheese, because they will certainly bring a lot of w(h)ine.

    John Hitchcock (51b5d7)

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