If you are a student of marketing and advertising, one of the most important lessons that you’ll ever learn will be to steer clear from religion.
Some brands who’ve tried to play around with religion as a marketing gimmick have failed catastrophically.
Just this past few days people of Indian origin had Bianca Spinner go #NamaFuckingStay in South Africa. The Kardashians self-styled their mother, Kris Jenner as the Hindu Goddess Durga and Lord Vishnu’s avatar of Krishna.
The next epic disaster that can be placed in the hall of shame is this Ganesh Chaturthi advert by the Fort Bend Country Republican Party in the US.
The Republican Party of Fort Bend County in Texas, United States, actually had a rather noble idea on their hands—to wish their Hindu constituents on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi. Alas, it all went horribly wrong when they came up with this ad.
The ad was placed in the September 12 issue of the Indian Herald to mark Ganesh Chaturthi.
By now you’ve realised what’s grossly wrong with the ad, but lets enlighten those who didn’t since we have had some ignorant lots of people out there.
The rather endearing dissection of the virtues of Lord Ganesha are rather great.
Only, the content is not original, having been lifted from a poster by Zomato. How can you make that assumption?
Well, the Republican Party was too lazy to even Photoshop the logo out!
THE THING THAT WAS MOST HURTFUL TO HINDU SENTIMENTS WAS THIS ONE SENTENCE ABOUT THEIR REVERED ELEPHANT GOD ON THE POSTER: “WOULD YOU WORSHIP A DONKEY OR AN ELEPHANT? THE CHOICE IS YOURS.”
The donkey reference is a jibe at the Democrats, whose party symbol is the donkey, while the elephant is the one for the Republicans. And thus, the elephant v/s donkey comparison.
Now, any sane individual who understands how easily offensive this statement can be would ask the same question. Really????
Social media erupted in outrage over the offensive ad which uses the dirty tactic of bringing religion into politics.
The Hindu-American Foundation (HAF) of Houston was leading the charge on pointing out the offensive nature of the ad. It remarked that while the sentiment behind the ad was much appreciated, the way it was executed was definitely hurtful to the Hindu community.
Owing to the backlash of the HAF and the Hindu community, the Fort Bend Republican Party issued an apology.