The Super Bowl and Abortion

This year I, like nearly 100 million other Americans, will watch the super bowl. However, this fact has very little to do with the game of football. I have no idea what occurs in this game, and if you asked me to name more than 3 football games I'd probably just walk away. The few times I've gone to see my high school team play I've left even more confused than before. No, I watch the super bowl for the ads.

Let's be honest, the ads are awesome. About 99% of the time I watch T.V. ads make me want to bang my  head against a cement block repeatedly (a lethal combination of sexist and stupid), Super Bowl ads are different. First of all, they're well put together because...well they have to be for that  much money and that big an audience. And if they're not "good" they at least bring people together - as does the sporting event as a whole.

Remember the Magic Fridge?

Now, the merits of this commercial are certainly debatable, sure. But I remember kids at school were talking about it for days afterwards. Not in the "yay alcohol" way but in the "haha that was funny" way...just to be clear.

But not this year. This year the topic of Super Bowl Ads is tearing people right down the middle...right along the lines us feminists know very well. Yep. Pro-life  versus pro-choice will rear its adorable little head in an unusual place: an audience of predominately drunk men.

Christian group Focus on the Family has paid about $2.5 million to run an ad focusing on football player Tim Tebow and the fact that his mother was told to have an abortion, didn't, then gave birth to one of the greatest college football players ever.

While I do think it's unfair to completely condemn this commercial before having ever seen it, I did check out Focus on the Family's website. They advocate complete abstinence outside of marriage, with this winner of a paragraph included: Looking at the history of teen birth rates, it can appear that rates have lowered significantly and that there's less reason to educate our youth about sexuality. The rates have in fact decreased, but the higher historical numbers represent married teens. And, married teens tend to face less life-long negative consequences of teenage births than unmarried teens.

No. We need sex education. We need it. And I'm sorry, what are these life-long negative consequences that teens are facing by marrying their high school sweethearts because of an accident? Not that I'm saying that never works, but honestly, why does that make everything better?

Although, at the same time, they do have what I will term "not-negative" articles on homosexuality and transgenderism.

So, yeah, I don't want to completely judge the organization Focus on the Family or the commercial (especially since I haven't seen it yet) but honestly, the fact that CBS is willing to run a commercial that is taking any type of definitive stance on a controversial issue is just not okay in my book. Honestly, I don't think the Super Bowl is the right place to address this issue, even if Focus on the Family spokesperson, Gary Schneeberger, believes that, "there is nothing political or controversial about the spot" and that it's just about "family values."

Whether or not the ad uses the words "abortion" or "pro-life" doesn't mean America will look at what they're seeing as unbiased. The message here seems to be "abortion is a mistake." The only mistake is not viewing this as an issue of choice. Tim Tebow's mother had a choice: she chose not to have an abortion. That we're incapable of viewing this situation as a choice is the real problem.

Can't we just leave the Super Bowl as one of the very few times our country comes together? We lose this and we're left with very few times that that actually happens.

More articles in WMC FBomb by Category: Education, Feminism, LGBTQIA, Media, Politics, Sports
More articles in WMC FBomb by Tag: Activism and advocacy, Abortion, Sex education, Sexuality, Transgender, Social media, News



Julie Zeilinger
Founding Editor of The WMC FBomb
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