Gillette released the two-minute We Believe: The Best Men Can Be. The film aimed to target the idea of toxic masculinity and aspects associated with it, such as sexual assault, harassment and unwarranted aggression. Needless to say, users online were immediately split on the video. Those against it argued that it was unfairly targeting all men for the actions of a few, while those for it believe it brought up topics relevant to the MeToo movement and needed to be talked about.
In terms of backlash, most of the outrage came from Twitter users who have claimed Gillette has pigeonholed all men into being complicit in sexual harassment. This is obviously not the case, as demonstrated in the video. The ad showcased various examples of incidents to promote their idea of positive ideals for men. Men are strong, men are respectful, and men do the right thing. This message is one everyone can get behind, but has been muddied in the climate of American bipartisan conflict. In a time as politically divisive as ours, people tend to draw their conclusions without digging deeper into the actual message behind the video.
It’s just an ad, there’s no need to get so upset over something you can choose not to watch. The same idea goes for putting Gillette on blast because they put out a video you disagree with it. All you have to do is buy a different razor, there’s no need to put up such a show over something that does not matter all that much in the long run. Gillette’s higher ups certainly don’t care about your political opinions. The company has its own beliefs, and unless their entire consumer base was offended by their statement, Gillette will stick to its guns.
Gillette’s message has been stymied due to the prevailing culture of making every little thing politicized. Should this ad have come out 10 years ago, would it have received the same amount of backlash then as it has now? Certainly not, most definitely not to the same degree. American discourse in the wake of this past election prevents any meaningful dialogue from happening. It can be argued that Gillette’s commercial seemed a bit mismanaged. What cannot be argued is the message underneath is important in the current climate.
The fact that people were flushing razors down the toilets sort of proves the point of the ad. If you are so offended that an ad calls for men to hold others to what should just be standards, take a longer look in the mirror next time you shave.
Jack Gleckler is a freshman studying journalism at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. What do you think? Tell Jack by tweeting him at @thejackgleckler.