Let me start by saying I support gay rights, gay marriage, gay adoption, the whole kit and kaboodle. I remember taking a LGBT History course in college that had to be labeled X History just in case it 'tainted' our transcripts. This issue has come a long way in just two decades in terms of public acceptance, but more understanding and tolerance is always in need.
The heir of the Barilla group, who is aptly named Guido, was originally prompted on his response to a female member of Italy's legislature Laura Boldrini, who was attacking ads placing women as the center of the home. She was using this debate as a means to improve the stereotypical images of women. She was quoted as saying, "an advert in which the children and father are all sitting down and the mother is serving at the table cannot be accepted as normal." source
Barilla goes on to say that Boldrini knows nothing about advertising. And I tend to agree - demographics, people. Demographics are everything!
You wouldn't sell vadge cream on Drag Race, would you?
What about Disney travel on The Walking Dead?
Just sayin'. Advertising is not the appropriate target to change attitude perceptions.
Although, with the recent controversy over a 'mixed family' advertising Cheerios, maybe we do still have a problem there...
I can't help feeling like the 'traditional' family is getting the shaft in all of this. Why are we wrong? If my kids see a commercial with two Daddies serving pasta to their twins are my kids going to ask where their second Daddy is? No. They are going to see a loving family, eating a meal.
I agree that Barilla went on to put his foot in his mouth by saying that gays could take the pasta or leave it, which they aptly chose to do, but I'm not saying Barilla is wrong to target their marketing towards the many women who are their target demographic.
What he should have said:
"Gay couples/parents are not our target demographic because they all tend to make fresh pasta for their families. Our products are geared towards the lazy, strung-out, desperate mother who doesn't have the energy nor time to cook anything for her family that takes more than 30 minutes to prepare."
Then we wouldn't be talking about it.