The Very Neutral, Totally Casual Gillette Ad

Jan 16, 2019 | Article | 19 comments

I wasn’t going to so much as make a whisper about the Gillette ad. Really, I wasn’t. This is Challies’ fault. While reading a recent article he wrote about the decline of the blogosphere, he made the point that just because someone else has already thrown in their two cents on a topic doesn’t mean that your readers have read that two cents, or that you can’t say it in your own words. So here I am.

 The Gillette ad purports to tell us what kind of masculinity is good and what kind is bad. Well-meaning Christians have been quick to point out that there is nothing wrong on the surface with the ad. Of course men shouldn’t be bullies. Of course men shouldn’t objectify women. But this is part of the problem with Evangelicalism today—many of us believe that there is such a thing as neutrality. This ad wasn’t created in a vacuum, and it wasn’t created by anyone who is concerned with such a quaint thing as Biblical standards. Which means you should throw their lofty opinions about human sexuality out the window, hastily and hencewith.

 The world’s standard of morality is broken and it’s on full display in what Gillette created. They can’t get their story straight, you see. One of the clips in the video that supposedly demonstrates toxic masculinity is from a television program where a husband squeezes his wife’s behind while she’s in the kitchen. Um, excuse me, but have any of you seen the kind of sexual content you can find on Netflix? It’s the kind of content that Christians regularly condemn and are resultantly laughed out of the room by their enlightened, unbelieving peers. How prudish of us to be so offended by the naked body, am I right? So while Hollywood and all large-streaming companies are feeding porn on a regular basis into our television screens, disguising it as “art”, the High Priests at Gillette and their fawning crowd want us to know: the kind of “sexual” content that we should be offended by is the prudish kind where everyone is fully dressed and it’s taking place between a husband and a wife. While we are it, and I ask this question with the horrifying stats in mind, how many of the woke crowd that are applauding this video are regular porn users? If PornHub traffic tells us anything, the answer is: most of them. Are we done taking their admonishments yet?

 It does appear that there is a section of Christianity that wants to keep their eyes firmly shut in regards to war on Biblical gender roles that is being waged everywhere we look. Forget that this ad lumps rough-housing in the backyard (normal boy behavior) in with sexual assault (sinful behavior). Forget that the American Psychological Association argues that “traditional masculinity” is harmful. Forget that little boys are being dressed in drag and photographed with naked adults in the name of “tolerance” and “inclusivity”. Forget that Woke Christianity is becoming more and more supportive of the LGBTQIA+ community. Forget all of this, and be outraged about men standing in line and barbecuing.

 This ad, like every piece of media you consume, has an angle. It has a starting point. It has a foundation. Stop trying to find ways to make the media you consume neutral. Nothing is neutral. There is an agenda, and when you turn a blind eye to its agenda in order to be seen as “reasonable” by the world, you help advance said agenda.

 Gillette is just being smart. In a world where women make up most of the marketplace they exist in, and where companies all over are creating policies that demand that half their leadership is female by 2020, kowtowing to the #MeToo movement is just a calculated business move. How many easily-bought women are switching to Gillette as we speak?

 As a Christian don’t forget that God made your husbands and sons with a specific, masculine purpose that the world despises. Don’t allow the world’s hatred for these things to slowly seep in to your own thinking. They’re smart about it. They pretend to care for the objectification of women while selling it to you for $11.50 per movie ticket, and I hear Netflix is upping its prices. They pretend to care for sexual assault while being flabbergasted that you could possibly be against the genocide taking place in the womb. They want you to know that men should never, ever speak over you in the boardroom, while busily seducing young girls into the porn industry in the backroom. Don’t take the bait and switch. Beards are godly anyway.

 

I wasn’t going to so much as make a whisper about the Gillette ad. Really, I wasn’t. This is Challies’ fault. While reading a recent article he wrote about the decline of the blogosphere, he made the point that just because someone else has already thrown in their two cents on a topic doesn’t mean that your readers have read that two cents, or that you can’t say it in your own words. So here I am.

 

The Gillette ad purports to tell us what kind of masculinity is good and what kind is bad. Well-meaning Christians have been quick to point out that there is nothing wrong on the surface with the ad. Of course men shouldn’t be bullies. Of course men shouldn’t objectify women. But this is part of the problem with Evangelicalism today—many of us believe that there is such a thing as neutrality. This ad wasn’t created in a vacuum, and it wasn’t created by anyone who is concerned with such a quaint thing as Biblical standards. Which means you should throw their lofty opinions about human sexuality out the window, hastily and hencewith.

 

The world’s standard of morality is broken and it’s on full display in what Gillette created. They can’t get their story straight, you see. One of the clips in the video that supposedly demonstrates toxic masculinity is from a television program where a husband squeezes his wife’s behind while she’s in the kitchen. Um, excuse me, but have any of you seen the kind of sexual content you can find on Netflix? It’s the kind of content that Christians regularly condemn and are resultantly laughed out of the room by their enlightened, unbelieving peers. How prudish of us to be so offended by the naked body, am I right? So while Hollywood and all large-streaming companies are feeding porn on a regular basis into our television screens, disguising it as “art”, the High Priests at Gillette and their fawning crowd want us to know: the kind of “sexual” content that we should be offended by is the prudish kind where everyone is fully dressed and it’s taking place between a husband and a wife. While we are it, and I ask this question with the horrifying stats in mind, how many of the woke crowd that are applauding this video are regular porn users? If PornHub traffic tells us anything, the answer is: most of them. Are we done taking their admonishments yet?

 

It does appear that there is a section of Christianity that wants to keep their eyes firmly shut in regards to war on Biblical gender roles that is being waged everywhere we look. Forget that this ad lumps rough-housing in the backyard (normal boy behavior) in with sexual assault (sinful behavior). Forget that the American Psychological Association argues that “traditional masculinity” is harmful. Forget that little boys are being dressed in drag and photographed with naked adults in the name of “tolerance” and “inclusivity”. Forget that Woke Christianity is becoming more and more supportive of the LGBTQIA+ community. Forget all of this, and be outraged about men standing in line and barbecuing.

 

This ad, like every piece of media you consume, has an angle. It has a starting point. It has a foundation. Stop trying to find ways to make the media you consume neutral. Nothing is neutral. There is an agenda, and when you turn a blind eye to its agenda in order to be seen as “reasonable” by the world, you help advance said agenda.

 

Gillette is just being smart. In a world where women make up most of the marketplace they exist in, and where companies all over are creating policies that demand that half their leadership is female by 2020, kowtowing to the #MeToo movement is just a calculated business move. How many easily-bought women are switching to Gillette as we speak?

 

As a Christian don’t forget that God made your husbands and sons with a specific, masculine purpose that the world despises. Don’t allow the world’s hatred for these things to slowly seep in to your own thinking. They’re smart about it. They pretend to care for the objectification of women while selling it to you for $11.50 per movie ticket, and I hear Netflix is upping its prices. They pretend to care for sexual assault while being flabbergasted that you could possibly be against the genocide taking place in the womb. They want you to know that men should never, ever speak over you in the boardroom, while busily seducing young girls into the porn industry in the backroom. Don’t take the bait and switch. Beards are godly anyway.

 

 

SUMMER JAEGER
Summer Jaeger is the wife to one excellent man and a homeschooling mother of four. When she is not blogging or podcasting, she is perfecting the art of the slow-cooked meal and wishing she was taking long-ish walks on the beach.
@SummrWrites Facebook sheologiansblog@gmail.com

19 Comments

  1. Elise

    Beards are godly anyway, I love it!

    Reply
  2. Zaynab

    I so love this. Kudos. They tried linking it to terrorism but they failed. So this technique

    Reply
  3. Lori

    This is absolutely true. Nothing is neutral, everything is pushing an agenda. I recently listened to an interview and the interviewee explained that he and Trump are so disliked because they don’t follow the liberal’s rules…Rules that liberals themselves don’t follow as your blog points out they are full of contradictions, but they scream when we don’t follow their rules. It made so much sense and we see this over and over. I hope Gillette loses money, I have been debating switching to a more expensive all natural brand of shaving products and this ad did it for me. thanks for writing!

    Reply
  4. Charles

    Well written.

    Reply
  5. Cara

    I’m so glad Challies made you do it. It was more than worth hearing your tuppenceworth! Eloquent and to the point as ever 🙂

    Reply
  6. Zion

    Interesting. I was like, ‘where are you coming from?’ But I get it now. I found the ad a little bit flat, however, didn’t think enough of it to explain to myself why.

    Reply
  7. Lance Phelps

    “Forget that Woke Christianity is becoming more and more supportive of the LGBTQIA+ community.”

    That this is true is utter insanity. Naturally we as a Christian community should be loving towards those who identify with sin but the worlds definition of love is happily cheering on those who revile the one true God and who are storing up wrath for themselves. This. Is. Not. Love. Love is calling for the immediate repentance of those who do such things and believing in Christ to be saved by his substitutionary atonement.

    You are right to say that no one is without foundation for what they believe. For those who believe that Christians should support the LGBTQIA+ community and not call for repentance; you need only examine the LGBT+ communities theological and philosophical assumptions to see that they are wholly incompatible with the Christian community. They decry any authority but that of their own emotional whims as a whole or in part. Christ tells us to take up our cross. They say look inward for your fulfillment. Christ says that he is the way, the truth, and the life. They say that no man can tell you that you are doing wrong unless that wrong hurts others. Christ says that the Triune God has sovereign reign and is the one who tells us what is right and wrong. Bottom line: The LGBT+ community is a mission field not victim.

    Reply
  8. Carla

    Poor Gillette, they have to find some way to appeal to a demographic that is easily swayed when they feel emotion and stopped buying disposable razors because beards are trendy and plastic in the ocean is not. All they have left is make “short films” that have nothing to do with the product they are selling, because if they featured the product we would all remember that we don’t actually need it.

    The one aspect of the ad that you didn’t address is the boys who are bullies. It always bugs me that it is never addressed why boys bully other kids. While sometimes it is just to fit in and feel a part of the pack, why are the “Alpha boys” so invested in the group being bullies. At least in my experience the behavior has always been a symptom of something wrong, and feeling of being powerless. An alcoholic father, a violent neighborhood, absent parents, un-achievable expectations, family trauma, ect. So for the handful of boys that just bully because the rest of the group does, making it not cool helps. However for the boy who does it for power doesn’t learn to deal with the emotions that underlie the behavior. How the culture deals with bullying assumes that boys have only actions and not feelings.

    Reply
  9. Kenneth Mick

    I don’t understand your point about pornography and sex in relation to this ad. Yes, Hollywood and Netflix push that at us, yet this ad clearly condemns that. It has the husband mistreating his wife, but also has boys ogling girls at the pool, and has a music video with women dancing around in bikinis. It very clearly is condemning that kind of porn culture.

    Reply
    • Summer Jaeger

      I’ll repeat what I already said to you on Facebook, and as I said in the article, the ad was right to condemn these things. But it’s still silly to pretend that the company that made this ad suddenly got a moral compass because of the MeToo movement. This is the same company that plastered it’s name on women’s butt’s in skin-tight blue suits in order to advertise. Unless this company, and all of the virtue signalers behind it, have installed porn filters on their computers, and condemn the objectification they have used before in advertisements, I won’t be taking their moral admonishments, and you shouldn’t either.

      Reply
      • Kenneth Mick

        Okay, I understand the point of your article better now. I agree that Gillette is signaling that they align with a certain cause because they expect that this will sell their brand better.

        The part where I disagree is that I have zero problem taking their moral admonishments, if those admonishments match up with Biblical values. In this case, 100% they do. There is Biblical support for my stance here. Jesus never criticized the Pharisees moral standards when those standards matched up with the Law, and he even stated that the standards were set too low and should be exceeded. Paul quoted pagan authors when writing to Timothy and when preaching to Athens. He didn’t fault the Athenians for having an altar to the unknown God, rather, he proclaimed the truth of who that unknown God was.

        You don’t have to take those moral admonishments, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with me doing so. And I see it as a great opportunity to point out the general revelation that our society has, and use that to get at the source of that general revelation. I’d say “great start, now here is how lives are transformed.”

        Reply
    • Jason M

      Kenneth, just a couple points. If you can’t playfully squeeze your wife’s butt or let her come up and do the same to yours, then your marriage (or potential marriage) sucks. My wife loves playful banter and remaining physically close is part of that. Secondly, how anyone can’t laugh at this bias when they see the ‘text/social media bullying messages’ portion. Online bullying is a significant issue for girls and women. The online gossiping, bullying, and cause for multiple suicides…but oh way, it’s mans issue, right? Because women are perfect, fierce, amazing, wonderful, and men are toxic, garbage, raping bullies. Right?

      Give me a break. Until we accept the problems in our society is due to sin, manifested through both men and women, worshipped at the feet of our idols of sex, greed, and hedonism, NOTHING will change. Laying the blame on one sex or race, therefore creating massive dividing lines, only makes the problem worse.

      Reply
  10. Marina

    That’ll preach all day.

    Reply
    • DiAndrea

      Yeah it will! lol

      Reply
  11. Kerry

    Well said, Summer. (Saw this because a FB friend shared it.)

    Gillette could’ve had a similar message and not given the impression of attacking men. They could’ve cut the negative examples and instead highlighted examples of good behavior and said “thank you” to the men who act that way. For instance, “To the men who stand up against bullies, thanks. To the men who care for their wife and kids when they are sick, thanks. To the men who bravely serve their community, school, church, or country, thanks.” Something like that would not only applaud the good, but give those who fail something to strive for.

    But, as you mentioned, most of these marketing departments / boardrooms are infected with folks who only see life in the negative, or have some agenda to push. Sad.

    Reply
  12. Aaron

    I’m going to use this article as an example of of how so many Christians like yourself will take an anti-Christian anti-biblical anti-Jesus stance just because the liberals they truly hate believe something. Your god is American conservatism, that is clear.

    Reply
  13. Josiah Royer

    Hmm…an interesting take. I am one of those who didn’t see that much wrong with the ad. Your point on Hollywood’s sexual double standard is well taken. However, even a stopped clock is right twice a day. I am often appalled at the way cultural Christianity ignores the sexual standards of Jesus and the Bible. In cultural Christianity, there is the idea that men will look and that is just the way they are. We need to consistently call people out of that, and I think we need to be careful not to give cultural Christians any room to slip by that part as they watch this ad. I think even this ad could be a tool to challenge men to wake up, step up and repent of their sin.

    The portions of the ad against violence seem benign enough. I am all for boys tussling as long as they’re all having fun. One of my favorite things to do with my three-year-old son is “wrestle.” However, the ad is flexible enough that I don’t feel it necessarily indites positive male physical conflict as toxic masculinity.

    Reply
  14. Em

    As someone who has been deeply traumatized by my partners porn use (I have PTSD from it and am in therapy, etc.)

    I saw the Gillette commercial as some sort of positive statement. It was a tiny breath of fresh air for me as someone who sees the world as unsafe most of the time.

    For me and my mentality at the time, I had a very “man up, men” attitude that came from a place of intense pain. Maybe I was being manipulated, maybe it was wrong, but in the moment, I liked the commercial. In that moment, I needed some bit of encouragement from the screens, which took my husband away from me for years. I didn’t go out and buy their razor. I still buy those Walmart throw away ones, but it was something I needed.

    One thought I do have is that it seems that the left could be exploiting the trauma of minorities and women. I think that women who have been traumatized by porn culture or something a man has done, could be especially vulnerable to these ideas.

    Reply

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