ˌrēˈɡrō/ verb/ gerund or present participle: Regrowing "to grow or be grown anew or continued growth after an injury or after having died or withered"
I have posted a couple times on the Gays/Lesbians and Christians topic, if you are interested on where I stand on the topic as a whole visit here, if you want to know where I stand on gay marriage laws, visit here. This blog post is not about either of those topics, and really is not about gays or lesbians at all, this post is from an entirely different perspective, so please let me explain…
I am beyond annoyed with Oreo’s “Pride” cookie. If you have not seen it, you can find out a bit more about it here.
Some of my biggest annoyances with it all are:
A. The cookie doesn’t actually exist (shocker right?), so essentially they are lying… Brilliantly lying from a marketing perspective, but lying none the less. I mean think about it, Oreo is showing a cookie rainbow that does not actually exist to do what? Sell. More. Cookies. They are a company that survives by making a profit, so that is exactly what they are doing, they are creating a buzz about something that does not exist and that will cause lots of people to go looking for this fake cookie, and settle for buying a peanut butter one, a mint on or a double stuffed one instead. It is brilliant from a marketing standpoint, but obnoxious from a relational standpoint. Which brings me to my second point.
B. I loathe ads like these for a few reasons, all of which are from a relational standpoint, but since I have spent the majority of the last 9 years of my life understanding marketing, communications, advertising etc.. I “get” what they were trying to do, they were trying to “reach out and show the love” to the gay and lesbian community. What I absolutely positively hate is that instead it actually divides us and drives wounds even deeper.
If for instance they released a “White Pride cookie” people would FREAK OUT (with good reason). They would claim they were not being tolerant of other groups of people, and they would be right. Can you imagine a white pride cookie? It would be insulting to other ethnicity’s such as the Black or Hispanic communities. And, let’s be honest, can a cookie really have pride anyway?
So, then the real question is why does this hit a sore spot with everyone?
Because, it does absolutely nothing but dig into a wound with a hot knife. The reality is the gay and lesbian community are a wounded group of people, they have been attacked, jeered at, bullied, and made fun of, so the natural human response is to band together and cling to that one thing that holds them together; their sexual orientation. So, by releasing a fake rainbow cookie, Oreo is ACTUALLY highlighting that pain, and creating a platform to divide us all once more and remind us of the wounds again, and then it causes insults to fly from both sides. We end up in each others faces once more yelling about how insulting and intolerant the other one is (did you catch that, both sides say the same thing).
For a moment, stop, put aside your pain, frustration, anger and think about why the “pride cookie” is insulting to those of us not gay or lesbian… Oreo is insulting those of us that are not “a part” of that community and rubbing it in our faces, and it is seen as ok because they are the minority after all, but in reality, it is just as insulting as if they released a white pride cookie. It is revolting and it does nothing but drive the wedge between us further.
Please understand, these types of things are NOT AT ALL the same as Black History Month or a Martin Luther King Jr. Day.. Literally, they are not even on the same playing field because those two things are celebrating, remembering or educating others about things that we can all learn from. They are meant to help us treasure, not force us further apart.
So, my annoyance with Oreo actually has little to nothing to do with gays or lesbians or anything of the sort, my annoyance is with the lies, the division, and the fact that it actually does the opposite of facilitate love between us.