/> a mother's heart » Blog Archive » An Open Letter to Mike Straka

The following comment was posted by Mike Straka of Fox News in his weekly column; my response to Mike (sent directly to him as well) is below that.

“Carl’s Jr. CEO Says ‘Get a Life.’ Grrr!”

So, fast food chain Carl’s Jr. wants the Parents Television Council to lighten up. The PTC is mobilizing a million people to voice their displeasure at the restaurant’s racy ad featuring Paris Hilton.

The chain’s CEO Andy Puzder says they should “get a life.”

To that I say, Amen, brother.

Enough is enough, isn’t it? Look, people can find most anything offensive these days, and they have every right to. But the same rule applies for the people who don’t find things offensive, doesn’t it?

So don’t buy a burger from Carl’s Jr. — big deal.

Let me ask you this question: Have you ever heard of Carl’s Jr. before now? Exactly. The company used some shock value to get some attention, and boy, did it work. Everyone who is screaming about this needs to lighten up.

The commercial is sexy in a trashy sort of way, but it’s also funny. In the end though, if the burger’s good, the burger’s good. Paris or no Paris.

You know, many of us think Hilton is dumber than a box of rocks. But she’s not, folks. She’s manipulating the system as good as any con artist. She’s the new millennium’s Madonna, and the more we protest her shenanigans, the longer she’ll last, and the richer she’ll get.

Get a life, and then Paris will go away once and for all.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Hey Mike–

I wanted to point out another view on the sleazy ad that Carl’s Jr hamburger chain has running on TV right now.

While you and Mrs. Grrr have the ability to control what Baby Maxine sees (or doesn’t see) on TV at this age, you will discover as she grows that she takes in much more than you think she does. Those darned kids are learning at *every turn*, whether we want them to or not! LOL

So fast-forward in your mind, if you will, to 3 years from now when you’re watching whatever sports programming you’d like with Mrs. Grrr and Baby Maxine is no longer “baby,” but a preschooler on her way to precociousness extraordinaire. This ad is no longer running, but because the envelope was pushed and no one pushed back, an ad that is much worse is on during your sporting event. Little Maxine is now playing Little People or some other imaginary game, but the music from this ad grabs her attention and she sits rapt for 30 seconds, watching a woman gyrate across the screen, skimpily clad. As a dad, I’m relatively certain this is not the message you want your daughter to absorb from television, and I’m also relatively certain that you and Mrs. Grrr will do whatever you need to try to instill different values in your daughter.

But wouldn’t it be easier if the popular culture wasn’t fighting you every step of the way? Would it be better if our young daughters didn’t have to see this sort of trash on TV to begin with? You might argue that we shouldn’t let our kids watch this junk to begin with. I wholeheartedly agree! But my scenario isn’t too far fetched to happen–the TV wasn’t tuned to some “adult channel” that shouldn’t have been on when Little Maxine was watching to begin with, it was simply a sports program. And you didn’t anticipate that it wouldn’t be safe to watch a little football/baseball/hockey/basketball/curling with your family and not have them assaulted by something like this. So how could you have prevented it in the first place?

You can’t. Plain and simple.

So on behalf of the people who think this recent ad *needs* to be protested–not for the self-righteous adults who choose to watch instead of turning the channel, but for the innocent children of our society that are growing up too quickly and already have too much pressure put on them in general, I will respectfully disagree with you telling me to “get a life.” I have a life–it’s my family. And my job in life these days is to protect our son from these sorts of images (and worse). But how can I do that when this ad (and others like it) are blasted across the morning news at 7:00 a.m.? Am I supposed to anticipate that gyrating hips on a too-skinny-model-who-needs-a-ham-sandwich-with-extra-mayo will be a part of my family’s morning breakfast routine?

I certainly hope not. And I don’t plan to stand around and let it happen, either.

Thanks for hearing me out, Mike. From one concerned parent to another, there is more at stake here than just a group of adults who like to protest things. It’s our kids’ future and the messages that we adults send them about who they need to be, what they need to do, and where their self-worth comes from. I don’t want my (future) daughter to have to choose between my words and examples and the media’s words and examples–the media can scream a lot louder than I can and already attempts to negate my influence at every turn. I just want to level the playing field a bit..

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  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/5963182 SuperMom

    I don’t know Sue. I appreciate the idea of trying to stem the tide, but….
    TV and movies have gotten progressively more violent and sexual and envelope-pushing right from the get-go. I don’t think there has been any backing up or slowing down of the giant smut snowball rolling down morality mountain. I doubt that’s going to happen now. Know what I mean?

    Ultra-sexy commercials won’t prevail unless they sell. So, we can make an impact with our pocketbooks.

    Also, we vote every time we make a choice about what, or IF we watch TV. Commercials regularly promote greed, discontentment, sex, crude behavior, and unhealthy lifestyles. Even without Paris and her garden hose, it’s been very bad for a very long time. Why do we keep watching TV at all if these are things that we don’t want to support?

    Even on the morning news we’re served up violence and horrible, graphic news images, plus a good dose of materialism and greed. Heck, just the previews for the shows coming up later in the day were enough for me to know I had to turn off the tube.

    We don’t do TV here any more. Haven’t for 9 years. We don’t miss it.

    To me, for people who are truly concerned about this issue, we should vote with our lifestyle. And our lifestyle reflects what our real values are. Complaining about the content of TV when we still choose to watch it doesn’t seem like a consistent value representation.

    TV is already in the toilet and headed for the sewers. No amount of protesting is going to change that. So, we need to change our own practices instead.

    Just some thoughts from a friend!
    ~Erica