Skip to comments.Does JCPenney's Back-to-School Ad Really Promote Bullying?
Posted on 08/15/2013 9:29:31 AM PDT by rightwingintelligentsia
A JCPenney back-to-school ad that implies kids will be friendless unless they wear the right clothing is promoting bullying, charged a flurry of critics on social media this week.
Your ad about cool kids wearing JCPenney clothes, showing a child sitting alone at lunch is despicable, fired off one Facebook user. Another added, How clueless are you? What a horrible bully-promoting commercial. Twitter users have called it tone deaf and more self-immolation for the company.
The ad, posted online by the retailer in late July and aired as part of a TV campaign earlier this summer, includes a shot of a kid in a school cafeteria, surrounded by friends. When the mom in the voice-over talks about the importance of buying her child cool school clothes, she notes, Ive been told this stuff can make or break your entire year. At that moment, all the kids except for one disappear from the room.
That message was enough to prompt the national antibullying organization Stand for the Silent to kick off a campaign against the ad.
My wife and I lost our 11-year-old son to suicide due to being bullied, and yes ma'am we do oppose this ad, founder Kirk Smalley told Yahoo! Shine in an email. We feel it does promote excluding kids that don't wear the right clothes. This is totally against what we have spent our entire savings on and the last three years of our lives traveling to speak at schools and teach these kids. We've spoken at 715 schools and to over 740,000 kids and taught them, You are somebody, and that you are not what you wear, what religion you believe, what color your skin, etc.
(Excerpt) Read more at shine.yahoo.com ...
Is there anything that doesn’t provoke “outrage” nowadays?
Another reason to have school uniforms.
I haven’t seen JCPenny’s ad but K-Mart is running “Be A Trayvon” ads.
Reprehensible marketing tactics, but they’ve been using them for decades.
When I was in school my siblings and I were the subject of scorn and bullying because my Dad was too thrifty and sensible to buy us the “right” tennis shoes. We survived.
Please, gimme a break.
Can we all just be men and say screw you PC lying ba$t$&rd$. We dont give a damn what you think anymore? Problem solved.
I have a photo of my granddaughter as she enters 7th grade. She’s happy although I wish her shorts were longer. You can tell from her face that she’s joyful. Have a photo (from Facebook) of my cousin’s granddaughter entering 7th grade. She does not look happy. She’s wearing a uniform and sensible shoes and glasses. Poor girl is big, not fat but looks very tall and a bit stocky.
I'll admit that I didn't see the connection until your post.
However, in addition to muting or changing the channel whenever I hear it, I've been thinking about complaining to K-Mart about the obnoxiousness of the ad.
And it's on a variety of channels that I didn't think it would be worth targeting.
Lord have mercy.
When I was young we didn’t need advertising to tell us that if we didn’t wear the “right” clothes we wouldn’t be accepted. Kids are the most notorious conformists going.
How ‘bout the K-Mart back to school ads promoting ghetto style for elementary kids?
The ad is insensitive but it’s also true. Wearing the wrong clothes in school can make your life hell. My clothes were from a thrift store and nothing matched and I got put downs all the time. Just the way it is. Kids are mean.
I'm a Trayvon you're a Trayvon
wouldn't you like to be a Trayvon too?
I'm a Trayvon. be a Trayvon!
Attacks on the nuclear family and Christianity.
I can’t hit mute fast enough on it.
Another vote for uniforms. The charter schools around here require them and they seem to promote relatively civilized behavior.
Having watched the ad, the whole “bullying” crap is a pantload by hand-wringing pantywaists.
Where's the outrage at its racism?
K Mart promotes retard America the coming generation.
The K-Mart ads are disgusting. I can’t understand a word those mini-gangstas are saying — not that I want to. I hope their sales tank.
I think you're trying too hard to denigrate uniforms. Maybe one girl is happy in the photo and one is not.
Uniforms and dress codes prepare kids for the working world. Outside of 'the arts' professions sartorial creativity is not well accepted. To be honest, I'd say even they have kinds of uniforms, albeit unwritten.
I have never liked the Back-to-School clothing push. I find the JPC ad to be a reflection of cold reality rather than "promoting bullying." JPC's ad is safe and bland by comparison. K-Mart's is well deserving of backlash and outrage.
Black mob violence.
I have seen those K-mart ads and they are definitely catering to the ghetto culture - that is where all the money is! /s
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Do it. I've sent three e-mails to K-Mart telling them how sick at my stomach that particular ad campaign makes me. They responded to the first two by talking about how "tongue-in-cheek" humor is an effective marketing tool. I wrote back that I failed to see any humor -- tongue-in-cheek or otherwise -- about encouraging 8-year olds to be gangster rappers. They haven't yet responded to my third e-mail and I don't expect a reply. So by all means, complain.
Scouts Out! Cavalry Ho!
They are targeting the pocketbooks of white suburban Americans so that is what they expect will be popular there.
More likely to find it at CheaperThanDirt though.
Should have stuck to ads with two moms and two dads. (/sarc)
I agree. Teach your kids how to defend themselves, then stand by them when the administration hauls them into the office for knocking the bully's front teeth out. What the Aussie kid did to the bully who was taunting him is the only thing bullies understand.
Oh yeah, that goes for bully nations as well.
Scouts Out! Cavalry Ho!
I agree with that. The JCP ad is nothing. "Buy our clothes if you want to be cool."
Even worse, the ad is false advertising. No way is JCP clothing cool or the “right” brand, and if someone was going to be subbed or beaten for having the wrong clothing, JCP clothing definitely wouldn’t solve the problem, but only make it worse.
Ironically, I would probably be ostracized for wearing clothes that came from J C (knock knock knock) Penney.
In my experience, those who downplay the destructiveness of bullying tend to have been participants in it. The schools I went to, teachers, particularly phys ed, subtly promoted it in a host of ways.
And it is very destructive.
Today’s notion that it is aimed exclusively or primarily at “gay kids” is of course nonsense.
The idea that the answer is to beat up the bully is often on a par with the notion that the way to get along in prison is to immediately beat up the top dog in there. True, no doubt, but often easier said than done.
Who’s downplaying bullying?
It’s simply not in the ad.
Arrgh, enough with PC bully bs. There are much more important “issues” out there than bullies.
Black mob violence.
J C Penny clothes are not “cool”.
When I was in second grade, I was being bullied and my parents encouraged me to “go punch him in the nose”.
I did. And it stopped.
Today they’d likely be brought up on charges.
Yep. It's one of my pet peeves as well.
I was bullied. I lived.
No, what I wonder about is what happens when one of these elite, sheltered children runs headlong into life? Either a boss who pushes too far, or a self-important "Public Servant", or any one of the innumerable difficult people you and I trip over every day? Are they going to run for the nearest grownup to "Moderate the Conversation"?
My wife saw that last night and said to me, it looks like they are going for the ghetto business. I asked her when was the last time she went to K-Mart?
After a minute, she told me last year when she was visiting a friend IN ANOTHER CITY, cause it was the closest to her that day.
No. And I’m outraged that you would even ask that question.
Not just true, but very effective. I know firsthand. After I kicked the right kid's a** at the right time, the bullying ended. As far as not being easy, what else worthwhile is? It's easier in the long run than continually being picked on. Again, I know firsthand.
Scouts Out! Cavalry Ho!
Everything is a dog whistle nowadays.