Friday, July 13, 2012

Dear Domino's

Discussions of the rape culture and gendered slurs ahead.

Dear Domino's,

I like pizza.  I enjoy a good slice of pizza.  Warm and cheesy with a nice, thick crust, mmm.  Great stuff!

Unfortunately, I'll no longer be purchasing any of your pizza or patronizing any of your establishments.  You don't seem to want me as a customer, so I'll be spending my pizza dollars elsewhere.

Why do I believe that you no longer want my money?  Your charming new ad campaign told me all about it!

It's based around the slogan "No Is the New Yes."

Let's put that idea in the context of our larger society.  There's a phrase a lot of feminists and other people battling the rape culture have made well-known: no means no.  This phrase (and notions of enthusiastic consent) are important because we live in a culture of rape which is hostile to consent.

That hostility to consent manifests in people not taking no for an answer.

Your mouth says no but your body says yes.

Come on, I know you really want it.

Women feel like they have to say no to keep their dignity, so you'll respect them and know they're not sluts, but they really want it, so you just have to keep going until they give in.

One person says no.  The other person ignores it entirely or chooses to interpret it as "yes" or "more" or "please" or "keep going, I'll 'give in' eventually."  Where "give in" might mean "stop fighting back."

You've illustrated the problem very nicely there in your new slogan.  Except that it isn't new.  "No Is Yes According to Rape Culture" doesn't make as catchy of a phrase, though, does it?

You're advertising pizza, rape, and hostility to consent all at once.  But I don't want to promote rape or buy hostility to consent.  I only want pizza.  So I'll buy it from someone else.

Why would I want to pay you to promote the rape culture, anyway, when I get so much of it for free?

Please drop your ad campaign and reconsider your relationship with whoever came up with it.  It's time to go back to the drawing board.  Oh, and donating to a survivors' group is always a good move.

With love,
Frank Lee

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