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Super Bowl Ads Part II: Educating Viewers On HSUS Deception

TAGS: Agenda

If you were one of the 111.3 million people who tuned into the Super Bowl over the weekend, I’m betting you have an opinion or two on the commercials. There was the race to get to the giant Coke bottle, the goat that loved Doritos, the darkened corners of a Budweiser party, the chiseled abs of a guy in Calvin Klein boxers, and the fun adventures of the beloved M&Ms characters. And don’t forget the Clydesdale colt.

Of course, there was the much-talked-about Dodge Ram “So God Made A Farmer” commercial.

There was also another notable commercial that aired just before the game, which I hope caught the attention of a lot of viewers. That was the commercial by, a project of the Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF), which highlighted the deceptive fundraising practices of the Humane Society of the U.S. (HSUS). The ad explained that only one penny of every dollar raised by HSUS actually goes toward the support of animal shelters. “Paw-thetic,” was the ad’s catchphrase. Watch the entire commercial below.

HSUS CEO Wayne Pacelle responded on his blog that he thought the ad was a waste of cash. However, I think any effort to educate consumers about the fact that HSUS, the 72nd largest charity group in the U.S., has consistently received a D grade for its lack of honesty and integrity in using donated funds to actually help animals is well worth it. Instead, HSUS is an animal rights organization focused on abolishing animal agriculture and eliminating meat, dairy and eggs from the dinner table. Hopefully, viewers who saw the commercial followed up by checking out and will think twice before donating to HSUS in the future.

“Most viewers will be bowled over this Sunday to find out that HSUS doesn’t operate as a pet shelter umbrella group,” says CCF Senior Research Analyst J. Justin Wilson. “HSUS purposely uses emotionally manipulative ads featuring sad-looking dogs and cats in cages, yet it gives just one penny of every dollar it raises to hands-on local pet shelters.”

What did you think of the ad? Was it effective? How about the Dodge Ram commercial celebrating farmers and ranchers using a poem narrated by Paul Harvey? Over all, what was your favorite commercial of the night? You can weigh in on those questions in the comments section below.

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