Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Why I shouldn't watch TV

I despise this commercial, and I can't decide if that makes me a bad person.

Don't get me wrong - it's great that Pampers is donating vaccines. If more people buy Pampers as a result, then everybody comes out happy.

Still, there are a couple of things that bother me about the commercial. First, it's very mommy-centric - none of the babies appear with a father or older sibling or whatnot. Second, I feel an adequate summary is "Thank you, pretty well-dressed white lady! Thank you for saving all us brown mothers and children, because we can't do it ourselves." The white Western mother is the savior; the brown non-Western mothers her grateful beneficiaries. I see a connection between this and the US's general attitude toward developing countries: we know what's best for you, and we're going to show you the right way to live. This view generally disregards our own contributions to the current poverty of the Third World.

At the same time ... if you're poor and you have the opportunity to get your child vaccinated at no cost, you're going to do it. And yes, if you saw the (white, wealthy) person who provided the vaccine, you'd probably thank them. And damn, those babies are cute. Pampers isn't doing anything wrong - I just feel very uneasy about this commercial.

I should probably start muting commercials.

1 comment:

OldeWhig said...

The "brown" women can be saviors if they want. All they have to do is send us whities some free crap for once.
They can start by overnighting me one of those cute Asian babies.