Even thought all this blog is about the positive advertising – the PSA – it doesn’t mean that all these pro-social ads were successful in delivering the right message. I found an article on David Horowitz NewsRealBlog called Could Bristol Palin’s New PSA Unintentionally Encourage Abortion? and I want you to decide whether the pro-social ad was really done properly that it delivers the ‘right’ message. The article talks about how US culture, according to the author Jenn Q. Public, is permeated by negative approach towards having children in early age. The author quotes Barac Obama saying he ‘wouldn’t want them (his daughters) to be punished by a baby’. (Public) This quote the author decodes as Obama’s saying that children damage your life. Then author uses quotation of Rebeca Walker who was describing what her mother’s thoughts were: ‘I was 16 when I found a now-famous poem she (Walker’s mother) wrote comparing me to various calamities that struck and impeded the lives of other writers……My mother had me – a ‘delightful distraction’, but a calamity nevertheless.’ (Public) Both quotes should support the notion that children are kind of trouble to our young teen’s lives.
After this introduction, the author is getting to her point and she presents new PSA campaign made by Candies foundation staring Bristol Palin (also teen mother). The PSA video is, at least for me and for the author, a bit ambiguous. On one side, it should warn teen girls that they should calm down before they do anything they could later regret. But on the other hand, the way how it is presented, according to me, is putting negative connotations on motherhood. And the author thinks the same saying ‘I wonder if this Candies Foundation ad goes too far in demonizing motherhood’. (Public) Jenn Q. Public, then, thinks whether this PSA really discourage teen’s behavior leading to pregnancy and therefore, whether the teens should see the abortion rather as a unavoidable conclusion than as their free choice. The author concludes her article putting a positive connotation on having a baby in teen age as having a new life challenge to handle which is not impossible. I personally agree with Public that this PSA did not clearly present the idea and therefore, for me, it sends an ambiguous meaning. And if we think about the impact on young teen girls who have not already sorted out their own worldview, I would not say that they would choose the option to ‘have a baby’.
Watch the video below to get the impression and then write down a comment what do you think about it. Do you think it carries a clear one way message?
Public, Jenn Q. “Could Bristol Palin’s New PSA Unintentionally Encourage Abortion?” David Horowitz’s NewsReal Blog. 01 May 2010 http://www.newsrealblog.com/2010/04/10/could-bristol-palins-new-psa-unintentionally-encourage-abortion/.
Candies Foundation Bristol Palin PSA. Perf. Bristol Palin. YouTube. 01 May 2010 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YpHlztPeHf8.