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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

No more food wars

Advertising has become an important part of American life in the last few decades. No more commercials of exuberant or carefree living urge you to feel insecure in your sheltered or boring lives.
Instead, advertising in America has become culturally acceptable and at times even comforting after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Since then, advertising campaigns have been transformed into socially sensitive displays that would be almost impossible to be taken the wrong way by a country in mourning.
According to the Houston Chronicle, Houston advertising agency Fogarty Klein Monroe planned to launch a campaign for Subway restaurants that would promote their low-fat sandwiches and encourage people to try healthy eating options. This campaign would have been perfect for Houston, the fattest city in the United States, but the campaign became instantly offensive and inappropriate. In the advertising for the Subway campaign, Houston citizens were going to be persuaded to lose weight as if it were a military mission.
The advertising campaign was planned to be extensive and included issuing draft cards and dog tags to those who wished to join the weight-loss army. Fogarty Klein Monroe planned to have Subway’s company spokesman, Jared Fogle, act as Uncle Sam and proclaim demandingly, “Jared Wants You!”
Such an advertising campaign would have probably been successful, yet with the United States in a war with terrorism, dreadfully unsuitable at this time. Subway has since softened their campaign with the “Subway Challenge.”
Subway is not the only company that has changed advertising tactics. In many cases, advertising campaigns have been pulled altogether, such as the campaigns promoting Coca-Cola and Pepsi. Most of these companies’ advertisements related the importance of drinking soda to the importance of joy and even life itself. Advertising agencies know this is not what the American people now want to hear.
It would be shameful if advertising agencies ignored the feelings that have arose in America lately. Americans are in an emotional and wounded state, and agencies would be remiss not to address the sorrow.
Thankfully, for the most part, advertisers have done a job worthy of congratulation. Patriotism has spread rampant with help from advertising agencies that have eloquently commercialized the people’s never-ending love of their country.
The country is in mourning, and advertising agencies are wise not to jeopardize their success by offending a nation set on justice. Advertising agencies quickly recognized that after a tragedy of this magnitude, Americans need to grieve without the bombardment of joyously shallow or offensive advertisements.
Advertisers did not thwart their responsibilities of influence, but decided to take the high road by assuring the people that they, too feel grief for what happened in New York City and Washington, D.C., by caring for the well-being of those here today.

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