27 May 2008

Would Jesus Drive a Ford?

California Ford Dealership Radio Ad Tells Non-Christians To "Sit Down And Shut Up" - Consumerist

Kieffe and Sons, a California Ford dealership, decided for some reason to launch a radio ad attacking non-Christians and people who believe that prayer shouldn't be in public schools. Audio and transcript of the ad, inside.
The ad reads:

Did you know that there are people in this country who want prayer out of schools, "Under God" out of the Pledge, and "In God We Trust" to be taken off our money?
But did you know that 86% of Americans say they believe in God? Now, since we all know that 86 out of every 100 of us are Christians who believe in God, we at Kieffe & Sons Ford wonder why we don't just tell the other 14% to sit down and shut up. I guess maybe I just offended 14% of the people who are listening to this message. Well, if that is the case, then I say that's tough, this is America folks, it's called free speech. And none of us at Kieffe & Sons Ford are afraid to speak up. Kieffe & Sons Ford on Sierra Highway in Mojave and Rosamond: if we don't see you today, by the grace of God, we'll be here tomorrow.

The ad has been running on radio stations in southern California since at least February, according to one blogger. She wrote to Ford headquarters, but received a reply that because the dealerships are independently owned and operated, she should get in touch with the management at the dealership.

Audio at Consumerist

Given Ford Motor Companies serious financial trouble, you think they would care more what message is being conveyed under their banner. Its also a pretty stupid way to sell cars in a competitive market with plenty of auto dealers from which to choose. I wonder if Kieffe & Sons Ford were to be the target of a boycott campaign they would be as strong of a proponent of free speech? Now I am not suggesting that a boycott should be organized, but it would be interesting to watch the calculations being made, sell cars or sell Yoshke.

Now, their point is not frivolous, but the conclusion that only Xtians care for
G-d in the public sphere is stupid. Anyone who knows anything about Judaism, knows that 'In G-d We Trust' is a mitzvah on the minds of Jewish people, especially those who publicly where a kippah and tzitzis in dangerous places. Then, it isn’t such a stretch, to believe that the person who alone pretends to be a servant of G-d on earth is also the first one who would ask the question many Jews have heard 'why do you wear those things in public', a question usually combined with either a revealed or concealed secondary question, 'why do you need to be so public with your faith'. It is a difficult role indeed to merely be an instrument in the hands of the Divine and not the focus of History.

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What Words Offend Arabs? The Truth.

Children's Poetry Booklet Recalled After Arabs Complain
(Israeli censorship kowtows to Arabs.
When Will We Tell The Truth Without Fear)

(IsraelNN.com 7 Sivan 5768/June 10, '08) Ynet's web site and Arab complaints against a ten-year-old boy's poem about terrorists has resulted in the recall of all of the Nes Ziona municipality's children's poetry booklets.

Ynet boasts that its coverage of the poem resulted in its being recalled.

The text of the poem (Ynet's translation):

Ahmed's bunker has surprises galore: Grenades, rifles are hung on the wall. Ahmed is planning another bombing!What a bunker Ahmed has, who causes daily harm.Ahmed knows how to make a bomb. Ahmed is Ahmed, that's who he is, so don't forget to be careful of him.We get blasted while they have a blast!Ahmed and his friends could be wealthy and sunny, if only they wouldn't buy rockets with all their money.

Poetry competition director Marika Berkowitz, who published the booklet, was surprised at the protests and told Ynet: "This is the boy's creation and this is what he wanted to express. Of course there should be a limit, but I think the there is no racism here. 'Ahmed' is a general term for the enemy. These are the murmurings of an innocent child."

The Education Ministry told Ynet: "The local authority that published the booklet should have guided the students in a more correct manner through the schools. The district will investigate the issue with the local authorities."
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