What’s All The Fuss?

For the two weeks lead­ing up to the Super Bowl, there was as much talk about the game as there was about the com­mer­cial to be run by Focus on the Fam­ily, a pro-life group.  The Super Bowl is one of the most watched shows on tele­vi­sion each year.  In fact, this year was the most watched show ever!  As such, Super Bowl adver­tis­ing time doesn’t come cheap and this year a 30-second spot cost around $2.5 mil­lion dol­lars.  When women’s groups found out that Focus on the Fam­ily had pur­chased a spot, they got on the warpath and began to mobilize.No one had seen the spot.  It was known that the spot was going to tell the story of Pam Tebow and her son Tim.  When Pam was preg­nant with Tim, she became sick while in the Philip­pines and doc­tors sug­gested she have an abor­tion.  Obvi­ously, she didn’t and her son grew up to become one of the great­est col­lege foot­ball play­ers in history.


CBS said they had approved the script and felt the com­mer­cial was appro­pri­ate.  Did this stop the women’s groups?  Of course not, they were on a mis­sion to gen­er­ate as much hate towards CBS regard­ing their deci­sion that they would be forced to pull the com­mer­cial.  They accused CBS of tak­ing the money – can you blame them in this econ­omy?  They were mak­ing $83,000 a second.

Jehmu Greene of Women’s Media Cen­ter said, “This cam­paign is about hold­ing CBS and the NFL and the other Super Bowl adver­tis­ers account­able for insert­ing an exceed­ingly con­tro­ver­sial issue into a place where we all hope Amer­i­cans will be united, not divided, in terms of watch­ing America’s most-watched sport­ing event.“  She went on to say, “An ad that uses sports to divide rather than to unite has no place in the biggest national sports event of the year — an event designed to bring Amer­i­cans together.”

Another women’s group said, “By offer­ing one of the most cov­eted adver­tis­ing spots of the year to an anti-equality, anti-choice, homo­pho­bic orga­ni­za­tion, CBS is align­ing itself with a polit­i­cal stance that will dam­age its rep­u­ta­tion, alien­ate view­ers, and dis­cour­age con­sumers from sup­port­ing its shows and advertisers.”

For­tu­nately, it didn’t work and after see­ing the com­mer­cial, I can’t believe all the com­mo­tion.  There was no men­tion of abor­tion..  There was no men­tion of pro-life.  Mrs. Tebow referred to her son as a mir­a­cle baby.  The tagline read “Cel­e­brate Fam­ily.  Cel­e­brate Life.”  That’s what all the fuss was about.

This is a clas­sic exam­ple of jump­ing to con­clu­sions.  If I wasn’t aware of the com­mo­tion, I would have won­dered what the spot was for.  It def­i­nitely would have forced me to visit the Focus on the Fam­ily web­site to learn more.  In the end, Focus on the Fam­ily received two weeks of free pub­lic­ity and had a com­mer­cial that left their oppo­si­tion with egg on their face, which can def­i­nitely hap­pen when you jump to conclusions.

To save face, the National Orga­ni­za­tion of Women is say­ing that the com­mer­cial glo­ri­fied vio­lence towards women because it depicts the foot­ball player tack­ling his mother.  Seri­ously?  That’s the best you can do.  If that is your argu­ment, why don’t you bring up the Snick­ers com­mer­cial where the foot­ball player tack­les 88-year-old Betty White?

Every­one is enti­tled to their opin­ion.  How­ever, it is best to make that opin­ion after all the facts are known and, espe­cially in this case, to voice that opinion.