Delta pulls 'Daily Show' ads over 'vagina manger' skit
A Jon Stewart skit that referenced "vagina mangers" has angered a conservative Catholic group.
May 8th, 2012
05:12 PM ET

Delta pulls 'Daily Show' ads over 'vagina manger' skit

By Dan Gilgoff and Dave Alsup, CNN

(CNN) - Delta Air Lines has pulled its advertising from “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” over a skit in which Stewart featured a picture of a manger in between a naked woman’s legs, the company said Tuesday.

In the April skit, Stewart jokingly encouraged women to use “vagina mangers” to “protect their reproductive organs from unwanted medical intrusions.”

In a statement Tuesday, Delta Air Lines spokesperson Leslie Parker said that “We're always re-evaluating our advertising opportunities and updating our strategy in an effort to reach our desired audience.”

“Delta doesn't discriminate nor do we condone discrimination in regard to age, race, nationality, sexual orientation, religion or gender,” Parker’s statement continued. She said that Delta made the decision to pull its ads on Thursday.

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The Catholic League for Civil and Religious Rights, a conservative group that has waged a weeks-long campaign pressuring Stewart to apologize for the skit, had pressured Delta and other Comedy Central advertisers to pull their Daily Show ads.

Catholic League President Bill Donohue has encouraged a boycott of Kellogg’s because it has declined to pull its spots.

On Tuesday, Donohue announced that he’d sent a letter to the leadership at Viacom, the corporate parent of Comedy Central, which airs “The Daily Show.”

“You should be as offended as we are,” the letter said. “But if you are not, consider a picture of your own mother inserted there instead. Perhaps you now understand how the 80% of the nation that is Christian feel.”

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“What Stewart did wasn’t a joke,” Donohue’s letter continued. “It was hate speech. We could have pressed for him to be fired, but we did not. All we want is an apology.”

Media representatives at Comedy Central did not immediately respond to a request for comment. At a stand-up appearance in Florida last month, Stewart acknowledged the Catholic League’s campaign against him, according to the Tampa Bay Times.

“I'm not going to censor myself to comfort your ignorance," Stewart said, decrying what he called the cable news-fueled “outrage machine.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Catholic Church • TV

soundoff (2,495 Responses)
  1. Just a reminder.

    Okay, you can love Stewart, you can think he's a lake-of-fire-bound anti-Christ, but whatever you are, please don't be a total rube and go reward some corporation with your hard-earned money. They are not your friends, and they are not siding with you – their choices are purely based on money.

    Kelloggs is not really your friend. If they accidentally kill you, their lawyers will fight your family to keep from paying them.

    Delta is not your friend. Anyone who has flown on them knows that.

    This activism through consumerism thing is just total bullshit.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:59 pm |
    • Steve H

      wow. well said 🙂

      May 8, 2012 at 10:06 pm |
    • OOO

      How can we expect a corporation, whose sole purpose in life is to make money, to have a conscience. The best we can do is keep the playing field fair and make rules to protect the environment and the consumer.

      May 8, 2012 at 10:11 pm |
  2. Richard Hendricks

    Donohue, where is your outrage about bishops and cardinals protecting child abusers?


    May 8, 2012 at 9:59 pm |
    • The priests

      I guarantee you that we do think about the children.

      May 8, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
  3. veggiedude

    Does the catholic church have a copyright on mangers? What gives? Can no one use a manger for anything now? I never knew a manger represented the catholic religion, and I was born roman catholic with 12 years of catholic school. Thank god I'm an atheist now.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:58 pm |
  4. Cinchy

    That's a good point... can you imagine if Stewart taunted the media for originally and erroneously spinning Trayvon Martin like he was some pure angel incapable of aggression? Can you imagine him producing some skits highlighting the stark raving misogyny that is pervasive in the Muslim culture? What about if he made fun of Jews who wear tefillin ("frontboxes")? No, neither can I. Sadly he has become predictable.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:58 pm |
  5. David

    Stewart just got too liberal for my taste. I quit watching it long ago. We need a realist.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
    • Eeesh

      THat's sort of the point of the show, is that he's a liberal political commentator, the same way that colbert is a conservative commentator. Watch stewarts stand-up and when he's not on his show....

      May 8, 2012 at 9:59 pm |
  6. Al

    Talk about hate speech. That is all I hear from the catholic church.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
    • Ted

      Stewart has been getting away with a lot for a long time.
      He's a smart guy but clearly has a hangup about the fact that he is 5'6".
      A common syndrome.
      Everyone else has to respect certain boundaries and he should be no different.

      May 8, 2012 at 10:01 pm |
  7. JB

    as one of those 80% yes, I am horribly offended by The Catholic League for Civil and Religious Rights. Guess I go back to flying Southwest. Peanuts taste better anyways 🙂

    May 8, 2012 at 9:54 pm |
  8. Outraged

    Go show Kellogg's some love on Facebook for standing up to hate mongering.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
  9. Vince

    I just canceled my Delta flight to NYC. I'm taking Southwest instead. I hate liberal media but I really hate attacks against freedom of speech and press so sorry, but Southwest is wayyy better though $30 bucks more expensive anyways.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
  10. cfonyc

    oooops, bye bye Delta, not flying with those idiots anymore...

    May 8, 2012 at 9:52 pm |
  11. Eeesh

    I don't understand why people feel the need to try and censor John Stewart. He's clearly going to say whatever he wants and as a political comedian, he's going to be in the limelight more often because he's targeting issues that are usually sore spots for most people. How's about this as.shole Bill Donovan actually combat the idea itself instead of trying to get the person who says the thing he disagrees with pulled huh?

    BTW Full disclosure, I believe that John Stewart is a genius who usually says everything I'm thinking. I also think the media frenzy that went after Rush Limbaugh with the whole Sandra Fluke thing was pretty ridiculous and is once again a moment where liberals could have used that to combat the idea that women who use contraception are not slu.ts but instead they went after Rush and only gave him more power.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
  12. KidIndigo

    Suits me. Delta is a cra ppy airline anyway, Kellogg's is yummy. I'm a Christian, I vote, and I'm tired of pompous, self-appointed patriarchal "religious authorities" trying to represent what I think. Good for Stewart for creating the controversy. OK, a bit gross, but effective. After all, this same MALE "religious authority" is all about making decisions over women's bodies without their consent. Please go away, Bill Donohue, you don't even REALLY represent the majority of American Catholics on this issue... read any polls, lately?

    May 8, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
    • tedlinko

      Or on most issues for that matter.

      May 8, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
  13. jason

    i like how they go on about persecution of Christians, then suddenly when there is something they disagree with 80% of America is christian.


    May 8, 2012 at 9:49 pm |
  14. The Bible is a book of badly written fairy tales

    And this is why I don't donate any money to religious charities – they use it to impose their political agenda on everyone else.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:49 pm |
    • TR6

      You forgot bloodthirsty and sadistic

      May 8, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
    • tom e

      With a name like yours, you obviously have some major issues with other peoples beliefs. You must be a real hoot to hang out with since you know where the truth lies. No need to be so miserable in life. Lighten up and enjoy the ride.

      May 8, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
  15. RE McCray

    Boycott Delta!

    May 8, 2012 at 9:48 pm |
  16. Cinchy

    The typical pseudo-enlightened post: "Hey! I'm a Christian, and what Stewart did doesn't bother me!" You might as well be saying: "Hey, I don't really have a moral compass. I say anything goes! Nothing is too crass, I have no standards or integrity. Plus I appear smart by criticizing those people who do."

    May 8, 2012 at 9:48 pm |
    • AGuest9

      Why does one need a religion to act as a "moral compass"? Furthermore, with the atrocities committed throughout history in the name of christianity, how could it represent morality?

      May 8, 2012 at 10:08 pm |
    • Cinchy

      You don't need a religion to be moral. On the other hand there's nothing wrong with practicing your morality through a religion. Nothing except you'll be made fun of.

      May 8, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
  17. tom e

    John Stewart is controversial but not funny. Maybe years ago he was but he is old news.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:46 pm |
    • MalcomR

      Sure. Right. Get your own show then, loser.

      May 8, 2012 at 9:54 pm |
    • tom e

      Malcolm sorry I miss your show. Calling names is so 3rd grade. I would never do that loser

      May 8, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
  18. Anna

    I plan to buy more from Kelloggs and not fly Delta. I am a Christian who believes in free speech.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
  19. Cinchy

    Please, please, please... let's remember that if Christians are offended, it doesn't count. We have to be consistent. Only the sensibilities of Jews, Muslims, Hindus - and pretty much any other creed other than Christians - have to be cared for. Let's chant: Christians Don't Count! Christians Don't Count!

    May 8, 2012 at 9:44 pm |
    • house broken

      Poor, poor christians...

      May 8, 2012 at 9:45 pm |
    • tom e

      If he had said the same thing about blacks, muslims, gays or hollywood, then he would be in trouble. Hey its only Christians.

      May 8, 2012 at 9:50 pm |
    • Cinchy

      Oh I know... who do they think they are! How dare they have a value system! How dare they have a sense of dignity and decorum. Yes... poor Christians indeed.

      May 8, 2012 at 9:50 pm |
    • Eeesh


      What are you whining about? Is it because you don't have a sense of humor is the fact that someone, somewhere at some point in time has disagreed with you and that should not stand!

      May 8, 2012 at 9:55 pm |
    • Cinchy

      Eeesh: Let's be honest... deep down you know and I know that it's funny only if it makes fun of Christians. You can lie to us, but don't lie to yourself. You know this is true.

      May 8, 2012 at 10:00 pm |
    • helloooo

      It appears that the both of you do NOT watch the Daily Show, otherwise, you'd know that Stewert DOES poke fun of other religions, races, etc.....I do like how you two fell into each others group-think thou–now that comedy 🙂

      May 8, 2012 at 10:02 pm |
  20. RES

    I am Catholic and I take offense at the Catholic League. Bill Donovan does not represent my Christian beliefs.

    May 8, 2012 at 9:43 pm |
    • OOO

      Problem is, if you are Catholic, your beliefs are all supposed to be the same. And they are policed by the Vatican.

      May 8, 2012 at 9:49 pm |
    • tedlinko

      Mine either. And the skit was freakin hilarious.

      May 8, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
    • Matthew

      You are most probably an islamist not a Catholic! Idiot

      May 8, 2012 at 9:53 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.