A Ritz Cracker ad featuring a same-sex couple and a transgender woman- among others- is under attack from anti-LGBTQ conservatives. They left so many hate-filled messages on the YouTube video that the brand had to turn off commenting entirely. Read on for the full story.
Ritz Ad With Same-Sex Couple Attacked By Anti-LGBTQ Viewers
The Ritz Crackers brand -in partnership with the It Gets Better project- released a beautiful ad for this holiday season highlighting the theme of “chosen families.” Throughout the one-minute ad, we see people who often feel isolated from their own biological families making meaningful connections with others. The message: as long as you have love in your life, you have a family. Check out the video below, then read on to find out how alt-right conservatives responded.
The end of the ad is incredibly moving, especially after the heartbreaking intro with the mother shunning and ignoring her gay child. We learn that they find love and acceptance from their partner’s family, their chosen family. As the voice-over in the ad says,
“The holidays are about spending time with family. Whether it’s the one you’re born into, or the one you make.”
More than just another commercial, it’s also a message that many need to hear during a year that’s been unkind in so many ways. A message of hope, of love, and of inclusivity. It’s that last part that has right-wing conservatives so angry. Inclusivity, after all, is a dirty word when you’re full of hate for anyone that isn’t exactly like you.
According to NY Daily News, the ad director, Andre Muir, ” cast two gay men of color, a transgender woman and a non-binary person for the spot,” to bring authenticity to the message. Patty Gonzalez, senior director of marketing for Mondelēz (the brand’s parent company) told NY Daily News,
“At a time when our families may be strained as a result of social distancing, political tensions or personal orientations and identities, the Ritz brand’s campaign is intended to encourage Americans to help build a more accepting world.”
Anti-LGBTQ Viewers left so many hateful messages, Ritz turned commenting off the ad
The YouTube video currently has over 7,000 dislikes and up until today had hundreds of hateful messages from anti-LGBTQ homophobes splattered throughout the comment section. Ritz has since turned off commenting and removed all messages. However, Pink News shared a few before they vanished. Among them,
“This is disgusting! Why are you promoting homosexuality? That’s nasty. For shame Ritz, I’m throwing all my crackers out. You’ve permanently lost a customer.”
Along with vitriol-filled comments, The American Family Association, a right-wing hate group, has literally declared “war” on Ritz, claiming that the ad’s goal is to “brainwash children and adults alike by desensitising audiences.” They’ve even crafted a pre-written message that other anti-LGBTQ conservatives can send in to the brand, as well as a petition that reads,
I am extremely disappointed that RITZ is refusing to remain neutral in the cultural war. RITZ is pushing the LGBTQ+ agenda on families with its most recent commercial. People who are already confused about their gender identity should not be encouraged to embark on a dangerous and unhealthy lifestyle.
I urge RITZ to immediately suspend this campaign and stay away from social agendas. Your decision will influence my future purchases.
As loathe as I am to link to their hate site, if you’d like, you can read their full article about the “dangers” presented by the Ritz Cracker ad here. At this time, the petition as racked up over 37,950 signatures.
Speaking of petitions, right on cue, One Million Moms (another alt-right anti-LGBTQ group) launched their own petition to fight back against Ritz Cracker’s message of hope, love and acceptance. Their entire post as well as their petition is identical to the one on the AFA website.
So far, aside from quietly removing the comment section from their YouTube video, Mondelēz hasn’t responded to the messages, nor released a statement regarding them.
What do you think about anti-LGBTQ viewers leaving messages of hate on an ad meant to spread hope and joy to all, including same-sex couples? Share below.