Friday, May 30, 2008

What is the point of this?

Oh for the love of...

Seriously, can someone PLEASE tell me what is the point of this ad? For the benefit of those of you who haven't heard, a little background.

An erstwhile Ford dealership in California has decided to insult 14% of the population recently. If you haven't heard the radio spot or don't want to play the video above this is a transcript of the audio:

"Did you know that there are people in this country who want prayer out of schools, "Under God" out of the Pledge, and "In God We Trust" to be taken off our money?"

"But did you know that 86% of Americans say they believe in God? Since we all know that 86 out of every 100 of us are Christians, who believe in God, we at Kieffe & Sons Ford wonder why we don't tell the other 14% to sit down and shut up. I guess I just offended 14% of the people who are listening to this message. Well, if that is the case then I say that's tough, this is America folks, it's called free speech. None of us at Kieffe & Sons Ford is afraid to speak out. Kieffe & Sons Ford on Sierra Highway in Mojave and Rosamond, if we don't see you today, by the grace of God, we'll be here tomorrow."

Now I ask all of you who ostensibly call yourselves American citizens, theist and non-theist, Atheist, Christian, Muslim or Jew. Black, white, red, yellow, or green. Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, Communist, Socialist or independent.


You are right about one thing, we do have freedom of speech in this land...and clearly you are partaking in another freedom that so many Americans seem to relish: the freedom to be an ASSHOLE!!!I quite rightly wonder what the response to and effect of this ad might have been if the authors had replaced the implied subject of 'atheist' with Muslim or Jew or maybe African-American or Korean.

In response to the torrent of bad press the dealership has received over this faux pas in judgment:

Rick Kieffe, owner of Kieffe and Sons Ford in Mojave and Rosamond, insisted Wednesday that he does not remember approving the ad (LIAR!), which he said was written by his longtime advertising writer and producer in Oklahoma.

“It’s just something that went by us,” (IS YOUR NOSE GROWING AND/OR ARE YOUR PANTS ON FIRE?) said Kieffe, who does not attend church but considers himself “a Christian spirit.” “We’re obviously sorry that it offends a given segment who identifies themselves as atheist.”

It would be hilarious if it weren't so freakin' sad!


John Adams

Anyone who knows me will tell you that I love history. I am fascinated by the past, I always have been. It was one of my favorite subjects in school and to this day nothing makes me happier than planting myself in front the TV to watch a well made historical documentary. Ancient history, Medieval history, American history, European it I love it! I learned long ago that you cannot understand who you are unless you understand what you were. A few years back I purchased the DVD set of Ken Burn's PBS mini-series "The Civil War". It is in my humble opinion the gold-standard when it comes to historical documentary. With each viewing i come away with something new.

Naturally, when I learned that HBO would be creating a 7 part mini-series about John Adams based on the book "John Adams" by David McCullough, I was giddy with anticipation. Though met with mixed reviews by many different self-appointed entertainment 'experts', I feel the series was phenomenal and its creation could have only been accomplished by HBO. I enjoyed the series so thoroughly and my respect for Mr. Adams so much increased that I felt I had to add the book the series was based on to my reading list. Recently, I subscribed to a service that makes available audio versions of many printed works. This seemed a perfect idea as I spend 2 hours a weekday commuting to and from my place of employment. Rather than listen to horrid commercial radio I chose to use the time to 'feed my head' as it were. When I noted that had the unabridged version of "John Adams" I downloaded it immediately and put it on my ipod.

Admittedly, before my listening of "John Adams" I have been a disciple of Thomas Jefferson and thought him to be the superior of Adams in most ways. Today I can say quite confidently the Mr. John Adams is so greatly misunderstood and under-appreciated as to be crime of history. As the esteemed Dr. Benjamin Rush, noted contemporary and confidant of both Jefferson and Adams, so aptly put it the two men represent the two poles of the American experiment. Never before or since has there been a man so deserving of praise and adulation as this "colossus of independence" from Braintree, Massachusetts.

I highly recommend anyone who has the remotest interest in what it means to be American either read or listen to this wonderful account of the life and times of Mr. John Adams. I will be adding my voice to the growing call for a monument to John Adams somewhere in our nations capitol.