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Bud Light, Nike, and Searching for Common Sense

Bud Light, Nike, and Searching for Common Sense

“Stupid is as stupid does.”

That saying, popularized by the 1994 movie Forrest Gump, has been around a good while. The expression means that a person’s intelligence can be judged by his actions. Someone can have a law degree from Yale, but if he drives his car at 35 mph on an acceleration ramp while merging onto an interstate, then he clearly isn’t as bright as his degree might otherwise suggest.

Sometimes people confuse stupidity and ignorance, but they are two altogether different beasts. Ignorance means a “lack of knowledge or information.” A D.C. politician who keeps voting to spend bucketloads of money when the country is trillions of dollars in debt is not ignorant.

This brings me to the recent controversies that erupted when two major corporations, Anheuser-Busch and Nike, decided to feature a transgender TikTok star in their advertising. In an ad for Bud Light, faux-female Dylan Mulvaney appears in a bathtub of bubbles, blowing soapsuds from his hands and trying to strangely flirt with the camera as he enjoys a beer. Nike features this same man-girl in social media ads for athletic leggings and sports bras. “They’re so comfortable and buttery soft,” wrote Mulvaney, “perfect for workouts and everyday wear!”

Both advertisements brought a barrage of criticism from consumers. In one short video posted all over social media, singer-songwriter Kid Rock says: “Grandpa’s feeling a little frisky today. Let me say something to all of you and be as clear and concise as possible.” He lifts an automatic rifle, blows away several 24-can boxes of Bud Light, turns to the camera, and, with middle finger raised, says: “F*** Bud Light! F*** Anheuser-Busch!” In Florida, the owner of a liquor store is refusing shipments of the popular beer, and many others have declared they’re done with it as well.

Nike customers are voicing the same outrage:

So, time for a question: Did these corporate advertising departments act in ignorance? Or are they just that stupid?

Neither option speaks well of these executives. If Anheuser-Busch doesn’t understand that most of its customer base consists of ordinary folks who don’t drink IPA beers—people who might be unsympathetic to a man flouncing around as a woman—then that ignorance is just pathetic. They need to get away from their drawing boards and visit some local bars and convenience stores, and they’ll see who buys their beer.

On the other hand, if the makers of Bud Light decided to feature Dylan Mulvaney in spite of their customers in hopes of joining the woke mob, then that decision was stupid. The point of a company manufacturing beer is to sell beer. To try to sell that beer while offending many of your customers is the very definition of stupid.

The key is that those of us who oppose this insanity need to stand for our values. These companies will get away with their stupidity if Americans like us financially support this nonsense.

Dylan Mulvaney is a laughable figure who will soon be forgotten, and the companies using him to promote their goods are pathetic, but an identical stupidity plagues our nation’s government, corporations, and cultural gurus. It’s a disease that stems from several causes—intellectual arrogance, for one, and an ignorance of human nature—but also making this list is a lack of common sense.

Common sense tells us that to judge people by the color of their skin, as critical race theorists advocate, is in itself racist. Common sense tells us that men participating in female sports contests as women is unfair and sick. Common sense dictates that closing down an economy, shuttering schools for months, and instituting vaccine mandates, as governments did during the pandemic, will inflict horrible damage on a society.

“I would rather be governed by the first 2,000 people in the Boston telephone directory,” conservative writer William F. Buckley Jr. famously said, “than by the 2,000 people on the faculty of Harvard University.” Later, he added this preface to that statement: “I rejoice over the influence of the people over their elected leaders since, by and large, I think that they show more wisdom than their leaders or their intellectuals.”

Two hundred years earlier, Voltaire noted that “Common sense is not so common.” The so-called elites of our country seem determined to prove the truth of that aphorism.

Image credit: Flickr-Cesar Sangalang, CC BY-NC-ND 2.0


Jeff Minick
Jeff Minick

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  • Avatar
    April 12, 2023, 11:30 pm

    The writer is part of the problem

    Kid Rock

    He is who you use to express outrage

    Behold the death of the written word

    All journalists little more than moral prostitutes writing for the richest john

    God have mercy

    • Avatar
      April 13, 2023, 1:49 pm

      Just for the record, a) the author of the essay is not part of the problem and b) your insinuation of such proves his assertion that "common sense" is not only uncommon, it is in jeopardy of disappearing altogether. For proof, we only need to wait for Anheuser – Busch sales figures to emerge over the next 2-3 months as we enter the peak summer sales months.

  • Avatar
    Old White Guy
    April 13, 2023, 7:29 am

    Jeff, you are amazing!!!!! Exactly what needs to be said and needs to be heard. Businesses need to just perform their business; they do not need to become SJW. But if a business wants to go down a certain path, they are free to do so. But this brings to mind something I was taught by my Dad when I was a kid…"You can do anything you want, just remember there are always consequences."

  • Avatar
    Robert True Myers
    April 13, 2023, 1:16 pm

    Get real. Produce a good product and people will buy it. When the brand ties to a trend, it is destined to fail at some point. Bud is terrible slosh and Nike is "so yesterday!! " Bo


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