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. Joel

    If Stewart had shown a picture of a priest sodomizing a young boy, then Donohue and the Catholic League undoubtedly would have no objection.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:36 am |
  2. Jm

    Alas it is sad but true that people as ignorant as Stewart can assault the Christian/Catholic religions in any disgusting, heinous (feces on paintings of the Virgin Mary for example) they please without fear of retribution under the guise of the first amendment. Now let's just say he used that same premise, first amendment right to free speech, and did a similar skit with Muhammad in a denigrating, disgusting way – all hell would break lose in the left-wing media and there would be a fatwa on Stewart's head not just the request for an apology. Just once I want to see Stewart, or one of those other loud-mouth liberal "comedians", do a similar skit denigrating Muhammad and the Islamic religion – just once. Rest assured though we will never see that because he, along with everyone else, is afraid of the death threats and violence laden retribution that comes along with THAT free speech.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Tim

      I suggest you try again. The Daily Show mocks Islam as much as Christianity and any other religion. Drop the faux outrage and deal with it.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:42 am |
    • BRC

      As has already been pointed out in this discussion, a while ago South Park DID do a skit about Mohammed, a domestic "terror" group DID threaten their lives, and Stewart proceded to sing "Terrorists Go F-ck Yourselves" on an episode of the Daily Show in response to their threats.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:42 am |
  3. Zenichi-Maro

    Funny for these so-called Christians to be on about "hate speech" when they're active in various states operating against civil rights for certain people. It's okay for them to hate gay people, to pass hateful legislation against gay people, and to encourage hateful ideas about gay people (i.e. unclean, diseased, pedophiles, tearing down families, etc.), but somehow it's anathema to parody some of the more ludicrous notiosn they promulgate in the name of their religion.

    No standard like a double standard, I suppose.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:35 am |
  4. Steve

    Kellogg's refused to pull their ad after being bullied by some over zealous religious group? Next time I'm in the supermarket, I'll have to load up on their cereals in appreciation.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • zzzzz

      Me too....
      I love Catholics, and my mother in law is devoted one, but when one gets involved in politics, that does not make you a religious organization. My father-in-law (god rest his soul) used to love frosted flakes, will this organizations religious action, convince God's thoughts of my father in law... Live Religion alone both conservatives and liberals. But if you make political decisions based on your religious believes, you deserve all the scrutiny. If you claim that the law should be certain way because "your interpretation" of the Bible said so, you deserve it ....
      You mix and use religion, family members to gain footing into politics, you deserve all the scam that comes with politics.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:46 am |
  5. kurtinco

    They misspelled "manager" twice!!! In the headline and in the second paragraph. My goodness.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • ChuckMurph

      Are you serious? It's manger – as in where sweet little baby Jesus was born.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • Joel

      It's MANGER, you f'n moron.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:41 am |
  6. Jimbob





    all religions.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:34 am |
  7. Jackson Grimm

    Ok, it's a fake news show people just calm down honestly. He made a joke and I along with probably his entire audience thought it was humorous. If you don't like the jokes he makes or the skits that he does you do have the ability to change the channel or turn off the computer. He's going to say things that are offensive and if you're going to get offended then it's your own fault because you chose to watch it.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • AKSean

      You mean people are allowed to choose and think for themselves? But that requires effort...

      May 9, 2012 at 10:40 am |
  8. Stewart for President

    What I find more disturbing is forced examinations of female reproductive organs by state government mandate. Imagine if the Democrats in any state sugested mandatory exams of any kind, the reaction and ire it would draw from Rethuglicans. It would be touted as a direct threat to our freedom. Most of these jack wagons are the same yahoo's that claim the airport scaners and pat downs are infingments on their freedom. Now imagine being forced to have a sonar probe stuffed into your most private of areas all to try to deter you from exercising a liberty that has been established by the highest court in the land.The hpocrosy and arrogance of the Republican party makes me want to vomit!!!!

    May 9, 2012 at 10:32 am |
    • Dallas

      So, go vomit but don't think we give a RA! I cannot stand Jon "loud-mouthed know it all" Stewart! Also, please note that I am NOT a republican.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:35 am |
  9. Guest Speaker

    Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler
    Dude, let it go. Your wasting your breath on this guy Stewart?
    BTW funny how the people who are offended, dont believe, are here on this page commenting. Trolling...huh?

    May 9, 2012 at 10:32 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Let what go? Are you just mad because I called you out on your bullcrap about Stewart never making fun of his own Jewish background? Funny how you are so offended by his comments but you never actually watch his show.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:40 am |
    • momoya

      Guest, you imply that it's illogical for a person to be "on here' defending a person's free speech, but you're attempting to rebut that position.. I'm not sure you're thinking clearly.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:45 am |
  10. clem

    Doesn't the "church" still believe in their own philosophical teaching that " God gave man –FREE WILL"? So why don't they quit trying to legislate "IT",if the almighty has any reservations about how we live our lives and/or our sense of humor let him handle it up there, or where ever He/She resides.
    The more the Catholic church spits and growls about our political position, one would suspect that it will only be happy when the USA will be known as a theocracy, and not a democracy. Then they would be able to persecute all the heathens, as they did in the Americas, pre 15th century.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:31 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      The Americas were only discovered by Europeans, and hence Catholics, in the late 15th century.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:38 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      The Americas were only discovered by Europeans, and hence Catholics, in the late 15th century .

      May 9, 2012 at 10:39 am |
  11. Ron in California

    It seems it's ok for liberal to go after conservatives who offfend but apparently not liberals who offend.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:31 am |
    • Guest Speaker

      Yeah, whats up with that?

      May 9, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • No Truth, Just Claims

      Instead of just playing victim why don't you give an actual example?

      May 9, 2012 at 10:33 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      It's OK for both to offend, and it's OK for both to go after the other. It allows rational people like myself to highlight the hypocrisy rampant amongst both liberals and conservatives.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:35 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      I assume you are referring to the whole Rush fiasco.

      I must have missed the part where Jon Stewart was a se-xist pig.
      I must have missed the part where Jon Stewart wanted to keep women from having rights.
      I must have missed the part where Jon Stewart slandered someone for expressing their opinion that they shouldn't have their rights taken away from them.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:37 am |
  12. phoebefields

    John Stewart is hilarious!!!! Advertisers should understand that it is a comedy show! No one is going to agree with all their skits and one-liners but those that do enjoy the program understand it for its acknowledgement of the upsurd. Which his show points out on both sides of the political aisle.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:31 am |
  13. Robert Ray

    Get real people.Religion is a collection of delusional people who just happen to belong to a fictional book club.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:30 am |
    • OneFineBlonde

      Regardless of your assessment of Christians, we are nevertheless free (just as you are) to fly whatever airline we wish and to refrain from eating any breakfast cereal we elect.

      So, THANK YOU DELTA. And hello to POST CEREALS.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:32 am |
    • phoebefields


      May 9, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  14. Kyle

    Donahue is nothing more than a press hound that uses religion in the worst way possible: to attack others and try to make himself seem like a crusader.

    And what happened to 'turn the other cheek'? Clearly, he has no regard for Christian values at all.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • rocketscientist

      As a Catholic, I don't care much for Donahue myself and the Catholic Leauge myself. I think expressing all this outrage is just counter-productive. All it does is give the offenders more advertisement.

      That said, as a Christian, I do consider Stewart's joke offensive. I wish he would apologize. I really like the guy and I'm dissapointed that he continues to sanction such a hateful joke. David Letterman, for example, had enough class to apologize for that joke about Palin's daughter, yet Leno and Stewart won't do that for Catholics. I can understand why many people don't like the Church leadership (heck, I don't like most of them either), but I wish folks would remember that most lay Catholics, and even your rank and file priests and nuns, aren't like the more conservative (and outspoken) members like Donahue and his ilk. We're just like everyone else, your friends and neighbors, so why would Stewart (or Limbaugh, or Leno, or others) want to hurt others that way?

      What happened to basic civility, respect, compassion and sensitivity to others in this country? Why and how did we become so hateful and wound up over differences? 🙁

      May 9, 2012 at 10:46 am |
    • Kyle

      I don't understand why it's so offensive. You know where Jesus came from, right?

      May 9, 2012 at 10:50 am |
    • Primewonk

      @ rocketscientist – it is the religious folks who seek to impose their religious beliefs on everyone else. We see this in the war on women. We see it on the war on gay folks. We see it in the fundies trying to force their religious myths into our public school science classes.

      We need to keep point out this ignorance, because some of these theists won't be satified until we become a theocracy.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:08 am |
  15. Chad

    Hey, whether you agree with Delta's decision or not, this country guarantees free speech. Just as Jon Stewart has the right to say what he wants on television (to a point), Delta has the right to support it or not. You can't be for free speech and free religion and then complain when a sponsor doesn't want to endorse a person's particular viewpoint.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Bingo, and we in turn have the right to boycott Delta. Is this a great country or what?

      May 9, 2012 at 10:34 am |
    • TooDark

      Rights are rights....that is true. Just as we have the right to complain about the idiocy and ignorance that the Catholic League is displaying when they try to legislate control over a woman's body. It's not surprising that they missed the point of the skit because they miss the point on anything to do with s @ xual !ty. The "V" only has one purpose for them...to create more sheep for the fold. Women aren't people to that kind of mindset...they're factories.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:36 am |
    • Chad

      That's fine if you want to boycott Delta. But why are you boycotting Delta exactly? What did they do that's so wrong? Because they said they don't want to be part of something that "discriminates" Christians and you do think we should attack Christians? If that's the case, then I think Delta will be just fine without your business.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:39 am |
    • TimeLord

      Umm...yes we can "complain". That's more speech. Get it? Delta "spoke". Now everybody else gets to speak.

      Nobody is arguing that Delta can't make their (stupid, cowardly) decision. They are simply saying that Delta's decision is stupid and cowardly. And that Donohue is a publicity-seeking bully. Spot on all the way around.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:47 am |
  16. Foreverwar

    Delta now can also be morally bankrupt in addition to it's usaul bankruptcies.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:28 am |
  17. Nick

    Maybe Delta can take the money it's saving on those advertisements and clean up their ghetto airplanes, or stop charging passengers for the privilege of traveling with a bag.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:28 am |
  18. esparmc

    Religious fanatics are ruining this world. What happened to not judging and treating others the way you want to be treated? How is trying to force a company to boycott a tv show going to help people, the world, anything? Oh well, maybe in 100 more years these idiots will realize no revelations are coming, no rapture, no second coming and all that bs. Maybe they will realize you can be kind and accepting to any and all people without religion. All religion does is give people a backdrop to do terrible things to others and then say all is good because they asked for forgiveness.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:26 am |
  19. Kelly

    The Daily Show is full of hypocrisy and juvenile rude behavior. Both the Colbert Report and the Daily Show have run their course. Both have descended into childish crude humor without any redeeming value.

    Both shows best reflect the negative values of left leaning liberals.

    May 9, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • Nick

      Awe.. don't worry. Someday a conservative will be funny...

      May 9, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • Rational Libertarian

      I'm right wing (fiscally anyway), and I believe both shows, particularly the Daily Show, reflect the positive values of the left.

      Also, while undoubtedly left wing, Stewart exposes the hypocrisy and stupidity of the left also. Let's face it, the Daily Show made fun of those dumb Occupy hippies more than anybody else.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Stewart and Colbert are two of the funniest shows on TV. It's sad that you don't get the humor. They haven't run their course. They will be around for years to come. Sure there is some crude humor but it is mostly intelligent humor. Funny thing about Colbert is he is a parody of a right-winger so the fact that you are offended by his act shows that you actually mimic his character's thoughts on the show. Otherwise, why would you be offended?

      May 9, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  20. Laura

    Jon Stewart wasn't mocking Christians, he was mocking the militaristic "natural birth" movement – saying "if you want to be real natural....it doesn't get any more back to nature than a feed trough" Let's not forget that a manger is a feed trough and the word manger isn't the exclusive property of "Christians".

    May 9, 2012 at 10:24 am |
    • Tired of the BS

      Thank u Laura for explaining what a manger actually is. The fact that it was used for little baby Jesus to lay his head still does not give the church reason to lay claim to the use of a manger they were in a barn get over it already if it. The outrage should be towards the ones who are trying to use their religious beliefs to push laws that infringe on those that do not believe in the same things they do. What Donohue needs to do is mind his buisness and worry about all those priest playin with lil boy privates.

      May 9, 2012 at 12:08 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.