Can’t We All Just Have Some Nachos?

I don’t care what you believe. Not when it comes to politics. Not when it comes to religion. Not when it comes to the issue of abortion. Not even when it comes to the issue of what color you should paint your house. You can vote, worship, abort or not – AND paint your house any damn color you want to. I don’t want to debate it, I respect your right to think and do and be (and paint) whatever it is that you are or like. Unless of course you’re mean, nasty or bent on doing something bad to other people. Then, I’ll debate you all day long and maybe even kick you in the shins.

I know that not everyone agrees with my stance on this, and that’s totally cool. But I’m a live and let live kind of gal. You do your thing, let me do mine, and let’s respect one another and our differences.

But CBS and this Tim Tebow Super Bowl ad business is making me crazy. I’ll admit it. I can think of little else. You see, here’s the deal. The Super Bowl, while it may not be the thing I live for all year long, it’s a traditional kind of thing with us Americans. Super Bowl Sunday. Beer, nachos, guys getting all crazy and frothy at the mouth, chicks acting like they care – it’s a special day.

And, being in the ad business, there’s always been a sense of anticipation and perverse fascination about which brands are going to produce stellar Super Bowl spots, and which ones are going to fail miserably. In fact, I’ll admit to being just geeky enough to mostly watching the game to see those aforementioned spots.

Along came Tim Tebow and Focus on the Family and ruined my day before it even started. I’m aghast. Appalled. Astonished. Repulsed. Madder than hell. You get my drift. What is CBS thinking? Since when is it appropriate on national TV to air spots as controversial as this one? Never mind during the Super Bowl. Seriously. I mean, we’ve still got Janet Jackson and Nipplegate burned into our memory banks here and they’re letting this craziness happen??

My friend Erika Napoletano, the genius behind Redheadwriting wrote an insightful, well-researched piece on this very topic, in her inimitable way, which I happen to adore. While her style is not for everyone (especially not for the timid) and she absolutely pulls no punches, the points she makes are so worth reading that you should stop right this minute and go read her article. Even if you disagree with her, her prose will still make you think. And that’s what the best written pieces do, you know. Words are art. In fact, they are magic. When used properly, they stir your emotions and make you think. And I can promise you, Erika’s words will make you think. Mosey over and have a read and come back if you like. I’m not going anywhere.

I mean, really, can you imagine CBS airing a spot focusing on support for gay marriage during the Super Bowl? C’mon. It was only down the road a piece, in 2004, that CBS declined an ad by the United Church of Christ, welcoming gays and others who were perhaps feeling snubbed by more conservative churches. Hmmm. So, it’s a “No-way, Jose” to those good-for-nothing gays but a scant few years later and here they are, that self-same network saying a big, fat “Yes” to pro-lifers. Something smells rotten in Denmark. Major TV networks, including CBS, have typically avoided these kinds of subjects – and for good reason. Is it just about the money? And, if so, does that make it alright?

I think we’ve got ourselves a controversy. According to today’s Mashable article, thus far, some 48,000+ (dare I say “misguided”?) people have joined Support Tebow’s Super Bowl Ad fan page, a joint project of Americans United for Life Action and LifeNews.com. And there’s scads of folks just like me, blogging, Facebook ranting and making Twitter posts like crazy, denouncing CBS and shaking our collective heads at their lunacy.

But here’s my question to you, dear reader: Is it really a good idea for CBS, no matter how much the network wants and needs the money, to go down this path? I say no. In fact, I stand up and shout as loudly as I can – “Really, really bad idea.” For all of the above reasons, coupled with what is perhaps the biggest one – it’s just not appropriate. I, and most other people in their right minds, don’t want to hear or see spots about abortion, pro or con on Super Bowl Sunday, any more than we want to see spots about healthcare reform, some ridiculous political candidate pleading for support, or whether gays should or should not be allowed to marry and so on. It’s just not appropriate on what is perhaps the biggest, most exciting day for sports in our country, never mind the largest TV audience of the year, to bring divisive issues like this to the fore and, more importantly, to only show one side of the issue.

I want to see a damn football game. And hang out with friends. Drink beer, eat nachos, watch the game (intermittently) and the spots (with freakish fascination followed by arm chair creative director-esque critiques). And this whole thing kind of makes me have a little mouth vomit when I think about CBS. Which is too bad, because I love Harry and Maggie and the crew in the morning. And I tolerate Katie at night. Sometimes. But the fact that the powers-that-be at the network think that this kind of advertising in this kind of venue is a good thing bugs the heck out of me. And the fact that they might just be in it for the money doesn’t make it any better.

What about you? Does the whole thing bug you at all or am I just crazy? What do you think? I really want to know.

*Thanks to Freedryk for the great photo! CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

  • http://www.confessionsofasocialmediamamapreneur.blogspot.com/ AlexisCeule

    I'm trying to be flexible… understanding… even supportive of this bold move by CBS. But I can hardly type those words, because… I'm not feeling it. *sigh* Like you, I just want my football and not be preached at while watching it. Not even subliminally. I hate to have anyone's religion shoved in my face, especially when I'm some where I don't expect it. ( my front door, you flippn door to door Mormons! Really?!) So… I'll be watching the sentiment reports post mortem. *sigh* I just want to enjoy these last days of football. Nice post!

  • denvan

    Absolutely spot-on Shel. This is something I'd expect of Fox News, not CBS Sports.

    Dumb move for the young jock as well.

    Although I'm suspicious that perhaps Focus on the Family was hoping they'd get more press by having the ad banned – taking a page from the PetA and GoDaddy playbook? That'd be a first.

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks sweets. For the read and for the comment. It's just a dumb move all the way around, which is what I find so aggravating. And, like you, I have my suspicious as well regarding all the “buzz” about this. Well-planned publicity angle or no? Whatever the truth, it's still just a flat out bad idea. Grrrrrr.

  • Alex

    Besides your excellent points and the obvious public relations debacle brewing, there's a guy on trial in Kansas because he murdered (allegedly) a doctor who performed abortions. Why add fuel to that despicable fire? To put this issue in the arena of a sporting event (no pun intended) is grotesque.

  • ShellyKramer

    I feel the same way, Alexis. I don't want to be preached at ever. Especially during a football game when I'm trying to have fun. It will be interesting to see how this turns out, won't it? Thanks for making the time to read and to comment – the highest of praise :)

  • ShellyKramer

    I agree wholeheartedly, Alex and have been watching that circus on the news. And that moron really thinks he was doing a good thing. So, yes CBS, it makes perfect sense to use national TV to keep fueling those fires of lunacy. Goodness, but you're getting me all worked up all over again!! Happy Friday, friend.

  • michaelleiter

    Shelly
    You make an excellent point. Focus on the Family during the superbowl is as welcomed as robocalls during supper.
    It's hard to see how either of these can be good business decisions, but there they are.

    The mute button is a help. But it's one of those programs that only works in real time, so tevo can't save us.

    I plan to avert my gaze and hope for the best
    Nice Post

  • http://www.redheadwriting.com The Redhead

    Miss Shelly – first of all, thanks for the props on my column yesterday as well as your thoughts as a marketing & ad gal. I'm very lucky that ToyWithMe.com allows me to take a stance on things that rattle my cage – as a woman, a sexual being and a HUGE fan of nachos (despite the lactose-induced ramifications).

    As my column pointed out – sure, let the ad run. I'll be in the kitchen doing a Mardi Gras routine for “more beads” or whatever it takes to simply avoid the spot. I'll also be making a donation during the game to Planned Parenthood, a group that counsels on ALL sides of reproductive and sexual health – not merely the ones they find convenient or pleasant.

    I want to sit there with this wonderful man in my life and friends from all walks on February 7th and laugh my ass off between cartoon-like {blink blink} moments as I try to decipher “offside” from “does this dip taste off?” I don't want an uninvited elephant in my effing living room. He's BIG, I have NO idea where he's going to sit and I have no doubt he's not even going to bring anything for the potluck. Fucker.

    Erika Napoletano
    @RedheadWriting/@DearRedhead
    ***thanks to my wonderful column sponsor ToyWithMe.com (because I have a vagina and I'm not afraid to use it)

  • ShellyKramer

    LOL. We don't have any room for uninvited elephants chez moi, either, Erika. Nor do we need any more poop (shark-shaped or not) to pick up.

    I agree – it's fine to let the ad run – in fact, it serves them right to do just that. And, like you, I'll be focusing my attention, and my financial efforts elsewhere, as my own way of shoving it where the sun doesn't shine. Small gestures, but so satisfying.

    Thanks for inspiring my rant, sweets.

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks MIchael! I plan on doing the same. That will be a good time to go and restock the beer!!! Thanks for the read – and for the thoughts. Both are much appreciated.

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  • http://www.confessionsofasocialmediamamapreneur.blogspot.com/ AlexisCeule

    omg…I think I love you. LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I'm coming to your house for Super Bowl. If Shelly won't let me in hers, that is. Bwahahaha!

  • http://www.redheadwriting.com The Redhead

    I love you too, Alexis…you and Shelly can come to my place. As long as you bring a casserole and an elephant gun ;-)

    Erika Napoletano
    Head Redhead
    RedheadWriting (da blog)
    Follow RedheadWriting on Twitter (da tweets)
    Be a fan of RedheadWriting on Facebook (in da face)

  • Fire Storm

    I totally agree with your comments. My question to these self righteous people is this: If a person is Anti Gay and Anti abortion, how would they feel or react if they have a gay child? Would they wish they had aborted it?? I don't think so…..but it some cases, perhaps yes. It all depends on the parent's personal views. I just don't think a person can be 'anti' both.

  • ShellyKramer

    I will bring a casserole, a lot of beer and a sleeping bag (for obvious reasons). xo

  • ShellyKramer

    We can go to Erika's house togethah, Alexis. That way, we can mess up her shit and leave (heh heh heh).

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks for the comment! I don't care that people are anti-anything … I think that's one cool thing about the society in which we live. And I don't mind the spot airing. What I do mind, however, is CBS choosing to tell only one side of the story. Or support only one side of a complex issue. That, to me, is just bad business.

  • http://toywithme.com toywithme

    Great post Shelly! I agree wholeheartedly with the points you made. CBS and Focus on the Family have managed to grandstand The Super Bowl even before the first throw of the ball. Money talks.

    Thanks very much for referring to Erika’s article posted on my site yesterday. She is an extremely talented writer whom I feel lucky to have as part of my team.

    Cheers, Sandy

  • http://toywithme.com/ toywithme

    Great post Shelly! I agree wholeheartedly with the points you have mentioned. CBS and Focus on the Family have managed to grandstand The Super Bowl even before the first throw of the ball. Money talks.

    Thanks very much for referring to Erika's article posted on my site yesterday. She is an extremely talented writer whom I feel lucky to have as part of my team.

    Cheers, Sandy

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks Sandy! Love your site and love Erika as well. And I wholeheartedly agree – you are lucky to have her and I am equally as lucky to call her friend. She is my hero, that wacky Redhead! Have a great weekend and let's keep fighting the good fight.

  • http://twitter.com/CherryWoodburn Cherry Woodburn

    I just cut short reading the redhead's writing. Why? Because it made me want to rip my hair out and rant. I stopped at if I'm pro-choice I must be “offended that Tim Tebow is alive”. No I'm offended that they'd say I must be offended. They're 'good', I'm riled and I agree I don't want to be riled on Super Bowl day or apparently tonight since I stopped reading the article that set you off Shelly. I think that was a really run on sentence, which I tend to do when my heart's racing. Ya know Live and Let Live is a great stance but sometimes I'd rather rip people's heads off especially those that wouldn't also allow air a positive stance on gays.

  • Erica

    Bugs the living hell out of me. I think of the girls with unwanted (and often non-consensually conceived) pregancies being told by some boneheaded football player that they DON'T HAVE THE RIGHT to live their lives the way they want and I see red. Thanks Tebow and CBS for letting women know their place.

  • ShellyKramer

    You need a gravatar, honey (http://www.gravatar.com). Oh, don't get me started …. but trust me, I am right there with you. Grrrrrrr. People. I just don't get it. Right now, in my state, there's a man on trial for going into an abortion clinic and killing the doctor. Said that he was doing the right thing because of all the unborn babies he was saving. Oh, that's logic for you. <Shaking head in consternation>. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and frustations – we are so very much on the same page!

  • ShellyKramer

    O to the M to the G, girl .. “sometimes I'd rather rip people's heads off” … it's fantastico. I felt the same way, missy, and have read Erika's article about 47 times. And damn, isn't she a great writer? I digress – I'm with you, girl. These people are good. They are crazy. And they are being completely supported in their craziness by CBS.

  • mmangen

    Craziness indeed! I have def been behind a rock as I didn't even know about this until I read your post. Thanks for the direction to Redhead's post. Agree, she's not for the timid, but that I am not! Some of her comments totally had me ROFL. :-)

  • ShellyKramer

    She's amazing, that Redhead. And this is a wacky scenario. Will be interesting to see how it plays out.

  • http://www.ctkingston.com/ CTK1

    I read this yesterday and had a wide grin. Great post Shelly. Well said and with just the right amount of bark, snap and bammity-boom. I'm a basketball buff so suffice it to say I missed the whole charade. Reading about it now, I too want nachos!

    I'm convinced that “Tim Tebow and Focus on the Family” would taste rotten on nachos even though it's 100% cheese!! For shame.

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  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks honey. And you'll love the Redhead, if you didn't check out her post, go do it. She's a sassy cat, just like you.

    And you are right, TT and FOTF would ruin a good batch of nachos :)

  • angie497

    Worse, actually – he went INTO A CHURCH and shot the doctor, execution style, at close range, in the head. Luckily, the jury took a whole 37 minutes to come back with a guilty verdict.

  • ShellyKramer

    I'm with you, Angie. It's despicable. Thanks for the read – and for making the time to comment.

  • http://twitter.com/gardenofwords Katie Elzer-Peters

    Yes, sometimes I just want to eat Nachos, too. And relax. And enjoy something IN THE MOMENT, rather than worrying about my next five minutes, five years or 50 years.

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