Wednesday, June 17, 2009

If I Buy These Jeans Will This Happen To Me?

Once again, a new sexually titillating ad campaign from Calvin Klein strikes a nerve. In New York City’s Soho neighborhood the ad, featuring a topless young woman engaged in kissing a young man while lying on top of another while yet another young man lies on the floor with his pants unbuttoned, adorns the side of an entire 5 story tall building. Some people find the ad so disgusting they are promising to boycott the jeans. The ad is so blatant one man told ABCNews, “If it were going on in the back of a parked car with steamed windows I would be arrested, yet they broadcast this to the whole city.”
Calvin Klein has a history of generating provocative ads that have caused havoc. There was the 1981 Brooke Shields ad in which she stated that nothing comes between her and her Calvins and last year, another banned ad featuring Eva Mendes exposing part of her nipple. The same photographer for controversial Abercrombie & Fitch shot the actor mark Wahlberg and Brook Shields ads. Other ads were dropped because television stations refused to air them and the FBI investigated the company for potential child pornography charges.
Younger generations have always had more tolerant views of sexuality often declaring, “the more the merrier.” One young adult even declared, "All I can see are beautiful people having a good time…It's not the advertising that makes little children confused, it's the uptight handling with sex-related issues in general of their parents."
Yet, others say it pushes the envelope and is disgusting, vile, obscene, an orgy and pornography that you cannot turn off because it is on the side of a building and not on television. This is an ad that you cannot hide from. You are walking down the street with your four year old or your ten year old and it is staring you in the face. In my opinion, it’s inappropriate and depicts a girl willing to compromise her integrity for a pair of jeans.
Is this my age speaking? Am I really that out of touch with what is going on sexually with young adults? I lived in Europe where nude television and magazine ads are common. I remember being shocked at first, but became very comfortable with it after a short time. Yet, I would not want my daughter to appear in the ad nor would I want her to experience sex without love. And, I ask, why one woman and three men? Why not one man and three women or two men and two women? Maybe it is the thought of gang rape that scares me, but she seems to be participating willingly. I am a person who loves sex, cherishes it even. I feel it is a gift we give to one another. I am also a person who has a collection of banned books because I do not believe in book banning. Now, I am second-guessing myself and asking how far am I willing to go for censorship?

Take a look for yourself and tell me what you think…




http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tvOJzxTyK88

15 comments:

  1. I don't think it's an age thing. I agree with the comment "it's not the advertiser" but I also thought why one woman. Our parents may have had this same dilemma with the Age of Aquarias, Hair and all that free love.

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  2. No, it is NOT your age. It's your sense of decency. I had FOX on tonight (Keith Olbermann was just wearing me out) and had to leap across a pot of beef stroganoff to get to the TV in time to turn it off. They were just about to put up the CK three-some in front of Mr. M.

    His last question before bed tonight was, "Mom what were they going to say was so bad about the Calvin and Hobbes picture?"

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  3. In a world of designer denim, Calvin Klien has played out. He is so predictably desperate that no one would talk about him unless he was doing these outrageous ads. Who the hell wears Calvin Klien jeans anymore? Nobody.

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  4. I'm not against nudity and I'm not anti-sex (I'm from Amsterdam, after all) but I do not wish my 18-year-old daughter to see this ad. She is at a very suggestible age and she does not need to see this kind of dangerous behavior glorified on the side of a five-story building in the middle of New York City. I would have no problem if Calvin Klein would like to use this ad for an adult magazine like Playboy or Penthouse, but please keep it out of the public space.

    Thank you for this post. I hope the ad comes down soon.

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  5. Emerge, you are so right, who wears these jeans anymore?

    Dutchbaby, I believe we are of like minds!

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  6. Having just returned from an anti-human trafficking event in Vegas (where 400 prostituted children were identified on the streets in one month), I find the ad pretty sickening. We allow stuff like this in public for the sake of art or free speech or sexual freedom but then question why our boys are addicted to porn and our girls are being prostituted. I know a lady whose little boy saw one of those huge Victoria's Secret photos in the mall storefront and was wrecked by it...turned solemn and anxious and finally confessed to his mom that he just couldn;t get those girls out of his head. If I sound intolerant, it's because this ad is just plain stupid. STUPID!

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  7. As a father of three (3) daughters, you will find that I have a conservative stance. The youngest just turned 25 oldest 37. While we watch a movie I still tell them to "hide their eyes" during a sex scene during a movie,,We all know it is a game, but basic respect is missing in the add. There must be respect in any sort of communication. Just my thoughts.. lol

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  8. That ad totally makes me squirm! It would make me vow NOT to buy those jeans but unfortunately I doubt I'm the demographic they are going for.

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  9. Wow, haven't seen this in person yet, don't think of myself as uptight in any way sexually, but I gotta tell ya, this is too much, it has an -abusive- feel.

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  10. I think quite simply it has it's place. This is the cover of a porno DVD not something that belongs on the side of a building. Do we not have an obligation to protect our children's innocence? We wonder why they have sex so young, why they get pregnant when they are teens. By the time they reach that age sexual things have been pushed in front of them so often it's just no big deal anymore. No I don't approve and I also am a fan of sex! I have a problem with this being an ad. I wouldn't let my kids watch a tv show or ad on tv with this image, so why should I be forced to do so?

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  11. It's the age-old question - does media influence society or does society influence the media? Forget the 60's - the 21st century is a limitless age with few boundaries - sexual and otherwise. As a female who grew up in a very liberal household, in a liberal age - I have no problem looking at this ad. It doesn't make me squirm or blush. That doesn't mean I think it should be on public display. I am curious as to what drug they are all on, why this girl has obvious self esteem issues, and exactly how a group of topless, CK jean wearing people would all end up in the same room - I mean, in real life.

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  12. Oh! And check out V's Secret's new "soft release" http://promomagazine.com/mobilemarketing/news/victorias-secret-mobile-shoppers-0528/

    At least the product matches the message...

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  13. Riah, you grew up in a very liberal household? Pfft!!

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  14. Holy wow! It is really a beautiful and erotic shot but I would not want my children exposed to it. I say, OK, Calvin, push the envelope but keep it for those who choose to see it. Offer a special publication once a year and many will buy it. It will become collecible, sought after, and talked about. The buzz will be positive, or at least provocative, and those of us who want to have the opportunity to instill different values in our children will have that chance.

    But this on a billboard is too much.

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