For immediate release: Wednesday, Feb. 2, 2005
For more information:
Barbara Blaine of Chicago, SNAP President 312 399 4747
David Clohessy of St. Louis SNAP National Director 314 566-9790 cell, 314 645 5915
Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, SNAP Outreach Director 314 862 7688
Sex Abuse Victims Seek Pulling of Super Bowl Ad
It Shows Priest Fondling Truck, Eyeing Girl, & Posting “Lust”
New Spot “Trivializes” Child Molestation Crisis, They Say
SNAP Says Female Victims Are Most Offended
A support group for clergy sex abuse victims is urging Ford/Lincoln to not air a planned Super Bowl TV ad that they say trivializes and exploits the Catholic church sex scandal and offends females who have been molested.
Leaders of SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests) are urging the company to withdraw the spot, which features a priest in a Roman collar longingly rubbing his hands over a new truck, looking at a shy young girl, and posting the word “LUST” on the church marquee.
(To see the ad: http://www.superbowl-ads.com/2005/videos-2005/lincolnLT.html)
"It trivializes childhood sex crimes by trusted clergy and exploits a horrific trauma," said Barbara Blaine of Chicago, SNAP founder and president. "We are appalled at how insensitive this ad is. It just rubs salt into an already very deep and still hurting wound for many of us."
Joining their concern are officials from a New York-based grassroots activist organization, a former prosecutor, and therapist.
“Are there no limits to what advertisers will do for commercial gain?” asks Irene Weiser, founder and executive director of StopFamilyViolence.org “To capitalize on the lifelong suffering of sexual abuse victims and the scandalous cover-up by church officials in order to sell a truck? This advertisement goes beyond insensitive – it is sickening.”
“Because much attention has focused on assaults against boys, girls and women who have been sexually attacked and exploited by clergy already feel very marginalized and ignored,” said Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, SNAP’s Outreach Coordinator. “This ad will only deepen their pain.”
“Provocative themes in Super Bowl ads are not new but this ad is designed to sell trucks by mocking and exploiting the sexual abuse of children,” said Wendy Murphy, former sex crimes prosecutor and professor at the New England School of Law in Boston. “This isn't just about pushing the envelope on bad taste, it is about a company making profits on the backs of the thousands of children who've been raped and sodomized by trusted priests. The public has an obligation to protest this outrageous ad by refusing to purchase Lincoln products and by letting Lincoln know in any way they can that this ad will not be rewarded.”
"People who are recovering from the effects of abuse often feel that the world around them triviliazes their suffering, and that the perpetrators are glamorized, while they are ignored and blamed," said Dr. Joyanna Silberg, a psychologist who specializes in therapy with abuse victims. “This commercial seems to glamorize the priest and his inappropriate sexuality using that to enhance the glamor of the car. It thereby could be seen as insulting to both victims of priest sexual abuse, and priests with integrity."
Silberg is also the executive vice-president of the Leadership Council on child Abuse & Interpersonal Violence.
SNAP is the nation’s largest and oldest support group for clergy molestation victims, with more than 5,000 members. It is based in Chicago.
For more information about the ad, please go to SNAPnetwork.org or StopFamilyViolence.org
SNAP plans to write Ford/Lincoln today voicing their outrage.
Priest Learns Lesson in Lust in Lincoln Ad
February 01, 2005
By Kevin Ransom
A priest admires the Mark LT a little too much.
DEARBORN, MICH. Ford Motor Co.'s Lincoln division will run its first Super Bowl ad in more than 10 years during the Feb. 6 broadcast of this year's pigskin extravaganza, as it launches an integrated marketing campaign for the 2006 Lincoln Mark LT luxury pick-up truck with a 30-second Super Bowl spot, the company said this morning.
The spot, "Charity," depicts a clergyman who discovers an unusual tithe in the collection plate--the keys to a brand new Lincoln Mark LT. The minister then checks out the vehicle in the church parking lot, falls in love with it, then comes back to earth when the owner of the truck indicates his daughter mistakenly tossed his keys into the plate. The spot ends with the minister putting the letters "LT" on the church marquee to spell out next week's sermon topic: "LUST."
The ad, which will debut during the first half of the game, was directed by Tarsem Singh (director of the Jennifer Lopez thriller, "The Cell"), and utilizes Cassandra Wilson's version of the Billie Holiday classic, "Guilty." The track was produced by Don Was and was recorded specifically for use in the spot.
The campaign also includes print ads in both pre- and post- Super Bowl editions of USA Today and Sports Illustrated.
"Charity" will also run online, beginning on Super Bowl Sunday, on www.lincoln.com. The Web site offers viewers a chance to pre-order the Mark LT, which will be available in dealer showrooms later this month. The Web site will also feature online film vignettes of people daydreaming about the Lincoln Mark LT. The online videos were created by Derek Cianfrance, an independent filmmaker worked on Lincoln's "Meet The Lucky Ones," online campaign.
Lincoln is also sponsoring the Sports Illustrated Super Swimsuit Party in Jacksonville, Fla., on Feb. 5. Two Lincoln Mark LT vehicles will be on display along the red carpet leading up to the party. The Lincoln Mark LT Chopper, crafted by Orange County Chopper, will be displayed inside the party. The Mark LT Chopper will also be featured on Discovery Channel's "American Chopper" on February 14 and 21.