Seriously, sometimes I can’t with people. With the media. With advertising.
Did everyone see the Doritos Super Bowl commercial? If you didn’t, there’s a good chance that you’ve, at least, heard something about it by now, but in case you haven’t, I’ll give you the rundown.
A couple is in a doctor’s office, and the wife is having an ultrasound. The husband is standing at the side of the bed eating Doritos.
The wife gets annoyed that he’s eating Doritos.
While he has a chip in his hand, wherever he moves his hand, the baby moves his hands — as seen on the ultrasound — inferring that the baby wants Doritos.
The husband thinks this is funny. He moves his hand in a way that makes the baby move in a way that makes the wife uncomfortable, so she takes the chip from his hand and throws it across the room.
There’s a slightly awkward silence, and then, the wife screams; the baby disappears from the Ultrasound screen, and though they don’t actually show it, it’s pretty clear that the baby shot out of the womb to get the chip that was thrown across the room.
When I first saw it during the game, I thought it was a bit ridiculous but light-hearted, nothing special.
Well, the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League took to Twitter immediately after the ad aired and tweeted, “#NotBuyingIt – that @Doritos ad using #antichoice tactic of humanizing fetuses & sexist tropes of dads as clueless & moms as uptight. #SB50.”
Okay, first of all, what does that even mean — the “#antichoice tactic of humanizing fetuses”?
What else would a fetus be? It’s kind of hard to humanize a thing that’s already a human — and the fact that it’s human is pretty much the whole pro-life argument anyway.
So, hundreds of people took to liking, retweeting and responding to NARAL’s tweet.
A couple of my favorite responses were, “I’m tired of all these Super Bowl commercials vehiclizing cars. #NARAL,” from Twitter user @XianMind, and, “’Humanizing fetuses’? What is Mom preganant (sic) with? A potato? A duck? Nope – a human. Say it with me. She’s a baby. @NARAL @Doritos,” tweeted by a radio talk show host Doc Washburn.
The other part of this whole thing that blows my mind is that there are hundreds of millions of Twitter users, and somehow, a tweet that resulted in less than 1000 retweets and favorites made news headlines — a tweet about a chip commercial that one group chose to believe had some sort of sinister pro-life agenda.
By Monday morning, there were multiple pages of articles available on this one topic alone.
Was this really news? Did it deserve to be considered trending news? Those are not rhetorical questions; I want to know if this instance was actually worthy of being considered news.
The pro-life vs. pro-choice debate is absolutely news and will continue to be probably forever, but was the manner in which it was presented here newsworthy?
Everybody is entitled to their own opinions, and NARAL is free to say what it wants — as asinine as it may be — even if it serves simply to rile people up. But, day after day, stories like this that serve to create drama take away from the real problems plaguing our world.
And while I realize I just added to the multitude of articles about this ridiculous topic, I’d like to believe that realizing the difference between news that matters and news like this will make people want to read the real stuff — the important stuff.