His Side Campaign Against Anti-Father ‘Leave Her Alone!’ Verizon Commercial

Glenn’s Call to Action from 11/7 Broadcast:

“I recently received an interesting letter from a His Side listener – a Texas grandma named Betty Barker. Betty writes:

Dear Glenn:

I was very busy on your campaign against the ‘Boys are Stupid’ T-shirts earlier this year.

I want to call your attention to a new commercial for Verizon DSL. They have a little girl of about eight working at a computer. Her dad is looking over her shoulder, looking slightly amazed. He says something silly like, ‘That’s like an encyclopedia thing.’

The child says, ‘It IS an encyclopedia’ and in a look which could kill, looks at her mother as if to say ‘get this idiot out of here.’

The mother is standing in the doorway and tells the father to go wash the dog. He says he’s helping his daughter with her homework and stays. The mother snaps “Leave her alone!” and, when he again hesitates, she yells at him. The father is humiliated and walks away looking like a whipped puppy.

It really made me furious when I saw it. I called Verizon Corporate offices and asked for Ms. Jerri DeVard, who is the VP in charge of marketing. Her secretary was a bulldog and finally gave me to Melinda Johnson who is in Executive Customer services.

I asked her if she thought Verizon would ever make the same commercial with the roles reversed and she said that she was quite sure that they would not.

She told me that they had not received a public outcry over the ad. I assured her that there would be, because I would be contacting you. She was not familiar with you so I gave her a brief clue in, and told her about your previous successful campaigns and all the media attention the campaigns received. I told her I was sure she would be well acquainted with you shortly.

I sure hope you look into this. Thanks for all you do.

Betty Barker

Well, grandma I can’t turn down an offer like that, and yes, you are right, Verizon will very shortly be acquainted with us.

Now I don’t think Verizon means any harm–I’m sure they’re decent people but they’ve developed the moral blind spot I’ve talked about many times on this show–the moral blind spot towards disparaging males.

A mountain of research shows how indispensable fathers are to their children’s well-being–not just their income, but their presence, their fathering–not their mothering, their fathering. It is tremendously damaging to convince a boy or girl that his or her father is an idiot or that fathers are worthless.

I have a daughter around the age of the girl in the commercial and I dispute the idea–the idea!–that because I’m male my love for my daughter and my son is somehow cheaper, lesser, not as good, not up to par, not as important. I’m angered over the way fathers have been vilified over the past three decades.

I dispute the idea that my father, and the fathers of his generation, who worked so hard to support their families and take care of their children, I dispute the idea that they are somehow lesser, that it’s OK to dismiss our fathers, denigrate our fathers, disregard our fathers, disrespect our fathers.

I want all of you to act. The listeners to this show have worked miracles in the past. We drove ‘Boys are Stupid’ products out of 3,500 stores worldwide–95% of their total distribution–earlier this year, and we made headlines around the world doing it.

Last summer over 2,000 of our supporters bombarded Sacramento with calls and letters and we were instrumental in killing SB 730, a bill which would have given custodial mothers the unlimited right to move our children whenever and wherever they want to. Everybody said we would lose that campaign, and everybody was wrong. And last month we helped Michigan fathers activists defeat an anti-father billboard campaign in that state.

I call this Verizon ad the ‘Leave Her Alone!’ commercial. Verizon calls it ‘The Elliots: Homework.’ I want all of you to write and call Verizon and tell them you want them to withdraw the ‘Leave Her Alone!’ commercial. I want you to bombard them with protests. Be polite, but let them know exactly how you feel.

All the information on how to email and call Verizon is below. Thank you for your support and activism.”

–Glenn Sacks