Bar owner Matthew Rogers of Pt. Richmond, Calif., sent this note to the company: "I run a bar in Pt. Richmond. … After seeing your ad campaign where you show a western map of the United States in which California is part of Mexico again, I've decided to do the following: 1) Never carry Absolut. Ever; 2) Lower the price of Ketel One vodka to $2 a shot indefinitely to build loyalty; 3) Print a copy of your ad and put it above the Ketel One drink special; 4) Tell all my friends and family what Absolut thinks of the United States of America and our right to enforce border laws. I am on the frontline of illegal immigration and its effects. Where are you? Oh, yes, Sweden. Good riddance."
Absolut's initial response to complaints was to hang up on consumers who phoned and to delete their e-mail without bothering to read it. But the controversy spread like a California wildfire stoked by Internet Santa Ana winds. In the first of two statements, Absolut Vice President of Corporate Communications Paula Eriksson attempted to douse the flames by touting the company's embrace-diversity ethos. "As a global company," she pedantically intoned, "we recognize that people in different parts of the world may lend different perspectives or interpret our ads in a different way than was intended in that market. Obviously, this ad was run in Mexico, and not the U.S. -- that ad might have been very different."
That arrogant, p.c. sanctimony had the effect of pouring gas on the flames. So over the weekend, Eriksson issued a new statement announcing withdrawal of the ad. It was comically titled "We apologize" -- and disingenuously argued that "In no way was the ad meant to offend or disparage, or advocate an altering of borders, lend support to any anti-American sentiment, or to reflect immigration issues. …This is a genuine and sincere apology."
For its part, the open-borders Associated Press attempted to minimize the widespread opposition to the Absolut ad from Americans and persisted in labeling reconquista views "fringe." I direct them to the speech given two weeks ago in San Bernardino by Hillary Clinton campaign co-chair Dolores Huerta, who railed, "We didn't cross the border, the border crossed us" and gloated that immigration enforcement is moot because the reconquista is won. "It's really too late," Huerta said. "If 47 million (Latinos) have one baby each … it's already won."
Maybe Absolut should hire Huerta as its next spokesperson.
Fresh off its Aztlan debacle, the company announced its newest campaign this week featuring an ad titled "Ruler," described as "a humorous look at gay men and their fascination with perfect, eight-inch 'member' measurements."
The company doesn't seem to have grasped that left-wing identity politics and liquor don't mix.