|By Robert Cohen Executive Director|
Idiotic Superbowl Milk Ad
Time out! Unsportsman-like conduct. Fifteen yard penalty! Oakland Raiders quarterback Rich Gannon has a 6-year-old daughter (Danielle) with Celiac Disease. People diagnosed with Celiac avoid foods containing wheat (gluten) and dairy (casein). For the first three years of her life, Danielle was a sickly child. She would wake up screaming through the night and had a series of earaches and poor digestion. After a severe bout of vomiting after eating a bowl of cereal, the Gannon family changed their diet, eliminating those foods which, to Danielle, could be deadly. Mrs. Gannon: "We eat a lot healthier now--lots of fresh fruits, vegetables, meats. Baked potatoes and rice. We eat a lot less processed stuff, and we don't eat fast food at all any more. It's very important for Rich's job that he eat a healthy diet, and this has been a real bonus. It's been good for the entire family." With that background, it is stunning to read that Rich Gannon is selling out to the world of corporate advertising by posing for a milk mustache ad. Sure, he'll receive endorsements galore, especially if he wins today's Super Bowl game. However, his daughter cannot digest milk, and his family avoids it, so why the lie? In doing the ad, Gannon betrays other children. Gannon is not alone. Brad Johnson, quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, has suffered one injury after another to various bones in his body this year, so what does the dairy industry do about that? Make him one of their new heros by claiming that drinking milk keeps bones strong. On Friday, January 24th, the dairy industry invested a barrel filled with dairy farmers' money in a one-time milkstache ad in USA Today. In October, early on in the season, Johnson fractured a left rib. In November, Johnson severely bruised bones in his right (throwing) hand. In December, Johnson suffered a painful lower back injury and may have surgery in the off-season. All this from drinking milk? What comedy! Here are the facts on milk, and why people consuming the greatest amounts of dairy products also have the highest rates of osteoporosis: http://www.notmilk.com/o.html Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Brad Johnson and Oakland Raiders' Rich Gannon posed together for the USA Today milk mustache ad. The ad read, "We'll take all the protection we can get." Today's USA Today (January 27, 2003) features the winning quarterback. The same ad is due to run in the February 3, 2003 issue of Sports Illustrated. Part of the ad text: "Drinking enough milk each day helps provide active people with all the calcium they need to help keep their bones strong for working out or bone-crushing contact sports like football." Uh, huh. Break bones like Johnson. Get sick like Gannon's daughter. Do you wonder if USA Today or Sports Illustrated has the editorial integrity to honestly deal with the truth, or do dollars get in their way? Fifteen yard penalty, interference.
Robert Cohen, author of: MILK A-Z
Executive Director (email@example.com)
Dairy Education Board
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