November 16, 2007

Need a Pair of Cement Shoes?

I don't know why the article below from the US&J caught my attention today regarding a little spat between a concrete company and the YWCA. I think this interests me because I can't make up my mind if I agree with the YWCA that it's probably offensive or with the owner who says it was tongue and cheek.

LOCKPORT: American Concrete billboard stirs controversy
By Joyce Miles/
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

— A business owner is standing his ground, and the women in his family are standing with him, after a YWCA of Niagara official charged his company’s advertising is gender insensitive.
Richfield Street-based American Concrete had a new billboard erected Monday on West Avenue. Over the image of a wrapped gift, the solicitous catchline, “Wife need new shoes?” is accompanied by the American Concrete logo and a greeting, “Happy Holidays.”
The humorous inference to “cement shoes” or “concrete shoes” as a method of doing away with one’s wife is at the heart of the controversy.
What company owner Kevin McCabe sees as risqué spoof, YWCA Executive Director Kathleen Granchelli condemned as ignorant.
“I’m sure it was considered to be a joke, or something cute, but with the number of fatalities we see in the domestic violence field, it’s not a joke,” Granchelli said Thursday. “It’s in very poor taste.”
No, it’s not, countered McCabe.
“I think the mainstream understands it,” he said. “It’s unfortunate that some people are reading much more into it than they should.”

Read the whole article at:


Anonymous said...

That's what passes for creativity? Katlheen Granchelli is right.

Anonymous said...

People need to lighten up. I`m sure this guy wasn`t thinking of affending anyone when he came up with this

Fat Tony said...

He sounds nice enough, but I would think when confronted with the YWCA's concerns he'd realize maybe it's not so funny and take it down.

Anonymous said...

Come on Tony, that's the problem with today, everyone is to sensitive. I heard the SPCA wants to stop the phrase "it's raining cats and dogs" because they are afraid people are going to start throwing pets out of high rise windows and the want Santa Claus to say HA HA HA instead of HO HO HO. If today’s mentality were like this 100 years ago, we’d all be dead by now.

Sweaterman said...

It doesn't matter....this guy got a heck of a lot of free advertising. Big news article and I am sure there will be guys out there that look him up to have work done.

I agree with anon....everyone is too sensitive now....I mean you say Merry Christmas and you get jail time!!!!

Niagara Prognosticator said...

Not *thinking* you're offending someone or not "meaning" to offend someone is not the same as not offending someone. Although in certain circles I'm sure that some find the remark funny, in the context that Granchelli raises its not funny at all. That is, in light of of the epidemic of domestic violence that pervades in our community. And certainly the "joke" is not appropriate for a public billboard display.

MPS said...

I agree; you'd think once the owner was presented w/ the YWCA director's perspective, he would have reconsidered the appropriateness of the sign. His comments were a little ignorant; is it really possible to speak for the general public's (or as he says "mainstream") sentiments?
Claiming that everyone is "too sensitive" and pointing out ridiculous examples does not deny the legitimacy of the YWCA's concerns.