Where There Is Barilla, There Is Homophobia
“If gays like our pasta and our advertisings, they will eat our pasta; if they don’t like that, they will eat someone else’s pasta”. This strong statement came from Barilla CEO Guido Barilla during an Italian radio interview last week – with a mentality from many decades ago – after he was asked why the company’s commercials don’t feature gay couples. Italians avoid making a brutta figura (bad impression) like the plague and it only took the company about a minute to do just that, plus a tarnished reputation, international boycott and social media uproar to immediately follow.
The American LGBT community took to the internet with many spoofs on the statement, like apologizing for eating Barilla pasta, mocking the homosexuality of pasta or photos and videos of gay couples eating their products. Competing pasta brands like Giovanni Rana and Garofalo took advantage of Barilla’s controversial stance and showed their support for all families with statements like “pasta is for everyone, indiscriminately and happily” and “the only non Garofolo families are those who don’t love good pasta” on their social media platforms. Meanwhile, Barilla’s PR team is busy producing robotic apology videos and reinforcing its “diversity position” on the homepage of its website. Maybe this was the time for Guido to use the no comment card and check back into 2013, a time where the “traditional” family is as varied as Barilla’s 206 varieties of pasta.
(photo credit: formiche.net)
Eidos Tweet: Spaghetti with a side of bigotry.