The Controversy That Wasn't
By: Kelly Winter
The buzz surrounding the anti abortion commercial that aired on the Superbowl ended with a whisper not a bang.
The 30-second spot, was supposed to recount the troubling pregnancy of Pam Tebow, mother of the 2007 Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow. Instead, critics and supporters alike felt it was nothing but an almost unnatural family tale about a “miracle baby”.
Before the ad aired, the National Organization for Women (NOW) described the ad as extraordinarily offensive and demeaning. Vice President of NOW Kim Gandy stated, “The implicit suggestion that pregnant women whose health is at risk shouldn’t worry because nothing bad will happen is downright dangerous.”
Another organization, Pro-Choice America, asked its members to throw a penalty flag against CBS. President Nancy Keenan sent an email saying, “It’s absurd that CBS would give a radically anti-choice group like Focus on the Family a platform to expose its extreme agenda to millions of people – especially since the network has blocked other advocacy groups from having the same opportunity.”
After seeing this ad many people wondered why there was such a big deal. A professor of Communication Studies at Monmouth College, Trudi Peterson says, “It was totally benign.” Peterson went on, “if you don’t know anything about FOF (the anti abortion organization that paid for the ad), you really do not know anything about the ad.”
Many people only knew about the ad because it was the first advocacy ad that had been broadcast on the Superbowl. If you did not pay attention to the pre game publicity than you would just think it was an innocent family tale.