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Too Controversial for Prime Time?

With all the hubbub surrounding the Tim Tebow “pro life” ad, you’d have thought that something extremely controversial must’ve been said. You’d think that it must somehow have been offensive or inappropriate or that it was just too political to be shown during something as American as the Super Bowl.

Various pro-“choice” groups were coming out of the woodwork weeks prior to this advertisement’s airing saying how it shouldn’t be aired and that it was offensive to women, blah, blah, blah. They hadn’t even read the script, much less viewed the offending commercial before passing judgment on it.

Then the ad actually ran during the Super Bowl and those same groups’ blathering was put to rest. Sure, they’ll still discuss it for a few days but even some pro-“choice” pundits have panned the outrage about the supposed subterfuge of their precious right to abortion, as stated by Washington Post staff writer Sally Jenkins in her article “Tebow’s Super Bowl ad isn’t intolerant; its critics are”

I’m pro-choice, and Tebow clearly is not. But based on what I’ve heard in the past week, I’ll take his side against the group-think, elitism and condescension of the “National Organization of Fewer and Fewer Women All The Time.” For one thing, Tebow seems smarter than they do.

She goes on to say that she’d like to see more examples like Tebow’s…

Here’s what we do need a lot more of: Tebows. Collegians who are selfless enough to choose not to spend summers poolside, but travel to impoverished countries to dispense medical care to children, as Tebow has every summer of his career. Athletes who believe in something other than themselves, and are willing to put their backbone where their mouth is. Celebrities who are self-possessed and self-controlled enough to use their wattage to advertise commitment over decadence.

You know what we really need more of? Famous guys who aren’t embarrassed to practice sexual restraint, and to say it out loud. If we had more of those, women might have fewer abortions. See, the best way to deal with unwanted pregnancy is to not get the sperm in the egg and the egg implanted to begin with, and that is an issue for men, too — and they should step up to that.

Honestly, because of all the hoopla over the advertisement, I was expecting a stronger pro-life message. However, after viewing the ad, I’m satisfied with the result. I think it was purposely understated and I believe that accomplished more than perhaps how I would’ve chosen it to be.

Jenkins goes on to conclude what should be obvious, regardless of political viewpoint, to anyone who actually viewed the commercial…

Tebow’s ad, by the way, never mentions abortion; like the player himself, it’s apparently soft-spoken. It simply has the theme “Celebrate Family, Celebrate Life.” This is what NOW has labeled “extraordinarily offensive and demeaning.” But if there is any demeaning here, it’s coming from NOW, via the suggestion that these aren’t real questions, and that we as a Super Bowl audience are too stupid or too disinterested to handle them on game day.

I’ve included this completely offensive ad below for those of you who haven’t already been offended. Please view at your own risk.



4 Responses

  1. I didn’t think the ad was offensive…and certainly not as offensive as I was told it was going to be. But I think that a blanket approval for this ad is difficult to make.

    Like it or not, the ad is political. A pro-life message in today’s culture is a political statement. How political? Well, CBS gets to decide that and that’s where they get into problems. They allowed the uncontroversial but still political Tebow ad through a filtering process that is supposed to weed out political ads–and hypocritically at that. The same filtering system that allowed the Tebow ad also prevented the Man Crunch (gay dating service) ad.

    You can like this particular brand of hypocrisy if you like, but it still should be noted as hypocrisy. Many of the leftists sites I read did no more than that, pointed out the hypocrisy and moved on.

    But the more important thing is their specific message. The Tebow story is wonderful as anecdote. A mother is recommended an abortion, which she refuses under pressure and the child ends up being a star athlete.

    But the realities of her condition should not allow her to lead by example. I leave the rest of my commentary in the hands of Will Saletan.

    “Being dead is just the first problem with dying in pregnancy. Another problem is that the fetus you were trying to save dies with you. A third problem is that your existing kids lose their mother. A fourth problem is that if you had aborted the pregnancy, you might have gotten pregnant again and brought a new baby into the world, but now you can’t. And now the Tebows have exposed a fifth problem: You can’t make a TV ad.”

    • Well, I never said I agreed with the other ad you mentioned being excluded and, honestly, had not even heard of it.

      That being said, it’s more than just anecdote. I’m not saying all problem pregnancies end in such a wonderful way. Many have some pretty tough results. That said, Caletan’s arguments leave too much to assumption, in my opinion. I like how another writer countered his argument…

      “Now it’s not that Saletan’s argument is nonsensical. It does work if you agree to all his assumptions, but look back and see how far into the weeds we’ve traveled. This is such a long chain of counter-factual assumptions, a chain which could be diverted at any time with alternatives.

      For instance, the majority of women with abruptions lived, even most of those who lost the baby (Some of the babies lived too of course). That means that it’s not really “luck” but playing the odds in most cases. Some of the women who lived had children later. Perhaps many of those women, even some who had other complications, don’t regret choosing life, even though it didn’t work out. Perhaps even some of the women who eventually died, while not being happy about dying, felt right up to the end that they made the right choice in giving the baby a chance at life rather than choosing to kill their child. Perhaps those that died didn’t have other children. And on and on we can go. The point is, there are lots of ways to tease this out. Saletan doesn’t examine all the possibilities. He’s on a mission, driving toward a particular desired outcome.”

      He goes on to point out that, in some cases, life is actually preserved by abortion (tubal pregnancies and such), where the alternative would have been to have both the mother and unborn child die. Those cases are admittedly rare, however.

      This isn’t all to say that it’s an easy choice to choose life for the unborn child over abortion in such cases but to make as much of a big deal over this ad as was made seems pretty ridiculous when you consider the actual content of the ad in the end. It simply wasn’t that big a deal.

      As for ads that didn’t make the cut, whatever CBS chose or didn’t choose is a matter for another discussion.

  2. All good points, on both sides I think. I just think that acting like “the ad is controversial” was the only complaint from the left is misleading. “The ad being shown is hypocritical” and “the ad is irresponsible” are two legitimate leftist arguments for not allowing the ad to air even if it wasn’t very risque.

    • If you want to think the ad is irresponsible, an argument for that could be made (not that I agree with that premise) but it certainly isn’t hypocritical.

      Regardless, I’m glad we can discuss/debate stuff like this in a civil manner.

      Now I need to get over to your site and stir it up a bit… 😀

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