The Questionable Conversations Continue On TV, Film And In Real Life

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If I stub my toe, I may swear. If I am derailed in traffic in an unguarded moment, I might curse. But other than that, not so much.

And you know why?

No. It’s not because I consider myself a prude. I am definitely not a prude.

No, it’s not because I consider myself “holier than thou.” Please. I am just as flawed as the next person, probably even more so. I’ve made more mistakes in life than I care to remember.

However, I do not consider myself a common human being — and that’s why I refuse and am very careful not to speak with common street words on any regular basis. I am an educated individual. I leave the frequent profanities and vulgarities to others of any ilk. I certainly don’t consciously or directly insert any ignorant, vulgar, or profane language into my writings or literary works just because I can or on a whim, be they articles, essays, blogs, books, or scripts. I have more respect than that for my work — and for my readers.

For the sake of further personal clarity, I do not consider myself a conservative or a liberal. I do not define myself by either political party or religious designation for that matter. I best describe myself as a human being who also, by the way, happens to be sexually, gently, respectfully and mutually attracted to other human beings who just so happen to be women; gentle, kind, sweet women (although my sexuality or the sexuality of any other human being should not be anyone business but their own).

I’m reminded of all this because as reported by The Huffington Post, conservative activist group One Million Moms recently became unraveled when the Burger King restaurant chain utilized the “D-Word,” a four-letter word which ends with an “m” and an “n” in a television advertising campaign for its new Impossible Whopper, which was introduced in August 2019.

The One Million Moms group is the same organization, which in late 2019, took infinite measure to force the family-oriented Hallmark Channel to remove a TV commercial showcasing a loving-kind kiss between two women at their wedding.

Now, the Moms bunch are complaining that Burger King employed “profanity” in their “Impossible” ad, which the group described as “highly inappropriate.” This time, two women aren’t seen planting one on each other, but, instead, several individuals — of the female and male persuasion — are on full display, with one male elating, “[D-word], that’s good.”

Let’s put aside any additional general issues that I may or may not have with fast-food preparation and/or what some may describe as meat or meatless (which I more or less address in a separate discussion; see first link below), and journey back in time to 1939 when the D-word initially caused a ruckus on the screen, albeit, the big-screen at that juncture, as opposed to Burger King small screen controversy of contemporary TV.

At some point in the 1939 classic film, Gone With The Wind, actor Clark Gable as Rhett Butler, tells Viviene Leigh as Scarlett O-Hara, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a [D-word].” The uproar such an utterance caused nearly-equaled the furor when H.G. Wells’ 1897 science-fiction tale, War of the Worlds, was initially dramatized and heard on the radio. Thousands of listeners, be they mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, sisters, brothers, or cousins across the country thought our planet was being legitimately invaded from aliens from outer space.

Flashforward to January 10, 2020, when the One Million Moms issued a press release stating that Burger King should be “more responsible in its marketing decisions” since families were likely viewing TV when the ad was screened. “The language in the commercial is offensive, and it’s sad that this once family restaurant has made yet another deliberate decision to produce a controversial advertisement instead of a wholesome one,” the statement said. “Burger King’s Impossible Whopper ad is irresponsible and tasteless. It is extremely destructive and damaging to impressionable children viewing the commercial.”

According to the group’s website, the petition to remove or edit the ad had over 9,000 digital signatures by January 13, 2020. As of this writing, the debate rages on. Is it healthy? Who knows? Is the Impossible Burger healthy? To eat his or her own, I guess you could say. Is having too much carrot juice healthy? Are debates healthy? For my money, it’s all relative.

I just try to be a nice guy. And if I make a mistake or hurt someone’s feelings, I do my dosh-garn dangdest to apologize. I wake up every day and try to add a little light in the world and try to be the best person I can be. And yep — I try not to swear. And while, too, I may find it a challenge to not call-out others on their vocabulary selections, the last time I checked, we all lived in a free country. And we should let that freedom ring, even if we disagree with it or the subsequent sounds — or silence — that result from it.

If the Million Moms group has an issue with Burker King, so be it. If the same group or others have an issue with seeing two women kiss on TV, also so be it.

But when it comes to dollars and no sense, and making and losing money for TV advertisers, TV networks, and multi-billion dollar food franchises, that’s when the issues become a little complicated.

Thank goodness I’m just a writer.

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Herbie J Pilato writes about pop-culture, stays positive, and hosts THEN AGAIN WITH HERBIE J PILATO, a TV talk show on Amazon Prime and Amazon Prime UK.

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