Help Less

I keep seeing this commercial for some organization out to help third world children. They’re not breaking any new molds; the doom and gloom pleas of “only YOU can help” have been around since Sally Struthers first peeled an onion. But they always irk me for their basic disingenuity. For instance, in the ad I keep seeing, there’s some kid from Paraguay named Jose (the name and the country have been changed to protect the innocent, but primarily because I don’t remember them exactly) who’s getting water from a puddle that looks like it was defecated in by fraternity pledges with the type of stomach virus that makes Legionnaires Disease look like sour belly. The announcer plaintively intones, “Who will help Jose?” And all I can do is scream at the screen, “How about the damn cameraman?! HE’S RIGHT THERE!!!”

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