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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. Alyson

    I've watched and rewatched that skit because I felt like it was so excellent. It was a little much, I'll admit, but this was exactly what he was pointing out. The most horrifying parts of that skit was his examples on legislation that hurt women, including wife-beating being legal in Topeka. If you can watch the news clips reporting this, real things that are actually affecting real women, and you are offended because someone made a photoshopped picture look a little mean, I wouldn't apologize to you either. If you are offended, watch Stewart's entire clip and the excellent points he made.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • Woooooot

      Well said. I think that's exactly the point he's trying to make. People get all up in arms about one joke, but it's real policies that hurt real people.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:50 am |
  2. Patrick

    I will never fly Delta again and will encourage anyone who will listen to do the same.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • W

      Maybe God can just magically fly you where you need to go?

      May 9, 2012 at 11:51 am |
  3. Emerald Laughter

    In other news... Daily Show viewers decide to boycott the Catholic Church and Delta Airlines, as they both lack a sense of humor.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • closet atheist

      I see what you did there

      May 9, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Geo

      HA! Excellent, well done.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • Jim

      cheers

      May 9, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
  4. RS, CA

    Something funny happened to Stewart on his way to becoming a TV performer - he became a repugnant human being! Same thing with Bill Maher! Very sad for human DNA to be wasted like that!!

    May 9, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      I agree 100%. Jon Stewart is funny and you are a waste of DNA. That's what you said right?

      May 9, 2012 at 11:48 am |
    • Emerald Laughter

      Your problem is you lack a sense of humor. You are taking things way too seriously, if you hate Jon Stewart.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:49 am |
    • Ray

      Kinda like how it's sad for human dna to be wasted on pedophile coverups, no?

      May 9, 2012 at 11:50 am |
    • sane

      Actually, they became socially conscious. Thank....uh....goodness.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • BFD

      I'll bet you thinkg Rush Limbaugh is just swell though, don't you?

      May 9, 2012 at 12:10 pm |
  5. Joey

    The post on this site show the true feelings of many. We have sit on the sidelines for several years afraid of offending those who would condemn us to hell fire for not believing in invisible spirit they can't see. I, for one, will not sit silent anymore. If you as a Chrisian are offended that I do not believe your way then prepare to be offended. Go worship however you wish. Believe however you choose. But when you decide to take your illogical beliefs to the public square for discussion, then you better be able to take it and quit complaining. You don't deserve any more protection for your beliefs than I. When you try to legislate your religion into my life and against my property, it's time for you to dissapear.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:45 am |
    • sane

      HEAR! HEAR!

      May 9, 2012 at 11:53 am |
    • FCV

      I could not have said it any better. The religious right is morphing into the Christian Al-Qaeda with their illogical beliefs and intolerance for anyone else's views. All they need is the violence to complete the transformation.

      May 9, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  6. Jim

    SOunds like Donahue has a bit of a grandeure dillussion going.
    "Could have pushed to have John Fired"

    Yea....
    he could push to have stripes painted on the moon too.

    I'm catholic and I also understand humor is the mortar that holds all of us together.
    That's why religious fanatics are so isolated.

    Humorless basta-rds!

    May 9, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • cbus

      He could have done the same joke with a picture of Cardinal Dolan and it would have had the same impact and aimed at least at the right person. He did not have to use a picture of the Holy Family, which is way out of line.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:52 am |
  7. Matt

    Once again, bravo Stewart - Bravo!

    May 9, 2012 at 11:41 am |
  8. wolfpackbob

    To suggest that everything is fair game for ridicule is to state that there is no line that a comedian cannot cross. Jon Stewart believes in God. He is Jewish. If he erred and crossed the line when ridiculing his faith to the extent that the Anti-Defamation League requested an apology, Stewart would apologize. He is ignorant to the fact that he crossed the line for Christians or he doesn't care. Stewart is acutely aware of what line he cannot cross with Islam, as sponsors would be the least of his worries.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Since you are the wisest among us, please tell us where the line is. If you avoided saying anything that might possibly offend somebody, we would all be silent. Perhaps we should stick to knock-knock jokes. Nevermind, those might be offensive to homeless people.

      I used to be a devout Christian. People would constantly make jokes about my beliefs. I usually laughed along with them. Granted, after many years I am no longer a Christian but life is too short to be so uptight about what people say.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:46 am |
    • bwhitten

      As a Christian, what he said did not offend me. So it offended you. Grow up and get over it. Are you that insecure in your faith that you need apologies for every imagined slight?

      May 9, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • wolfpackbob

      So you get to decide and define what offends me? And you have no problem with being offended that I am offended? Wow. Peace.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • Stewart's Midget Pills

      Amen. If a comedy group put the Torah inside a bagel, the Jews of the world would protest en masse. Then the term anti-semitism would flood the media outlets. It would be condemned and considered hate. But if Stewart makes fun of other reglions of if Sasha Baron Butthole rips other faiths, it's considered funny, and part of pop culture.

      Being a devout Jew, I find it completely hypocritical that someone has zero tolerance for another faith. All faiths have their idiotic, zealot side, but that doesn't mean all who support are in that category.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      No, it means we can't be afraid to speak out because we are worried it might offend someone.

      May 9, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Huebert

      @Pills

      Have you ever seen The Daily Show? Stewart makes fun of all religions Jews included. Also did you know that Stewart is Jewish?

      May 9, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      SMP, Jon Stewart makes fun of Judaism all the time. Do you ever watch his show?

      May 9, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
    • Woooooot

      @wolfpakbob: Who are you and why are you so important that you can't be offended? Why should anyone be concerned? You are not that big of a deal. I'll tell you one thing ol' wolfpakbob, you don't seem to understand a lot of basic principles based on your previous comments so let me explain it to you again. If you don't like the show, feel free to change the channel. If you feel like your religion is being threaten by jokes, then please feel free to reevaluate your confidence in your chosen religion.

      May 9, 2012 at 12:06 pm |
    • Primewonk

      So wolfpack, almost everything the religious right (oxymoron) says deeply offends me as a person with more than 10 functioning neurons. When do I get my apology from these cretins?

      May 9, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
    • Menlow

      The saddest part of your rant is you don't know that Stewart is an equal opportunity comedian. Watch out, you are exposing your ingnorance and bigotry to the nation.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:07 pm |
  9. mandarax

    It disgusts me how Christianity can dish out the most vile policies and most oppressive social pressures, and then act so fragile and victimized as soon as anyone dares to criticize them.

    Christian BS is not above criticism anymore – you're going to have to deal with that.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • whatsnaname

      Agreed. Good for the goose then good for the gander. This society is spring loaded to be offended and looking for a way to hate someone or anyone that isn't in your little day camp. Add religion to the mix and all bets are off.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • n8263

      Much better said than I could have. I'm in awe how someone like Donohue could advocate imposing his Sharia law on all Americans then act hurt and offended when a decent person like Stewart fights back.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:44 am |
    • momoya

      Indeed.. Christians, you have a thought virus in your brain making you think stupid sh!t isn't really all that stupid.. It is that stupid.. Quit tripping over your own ego and fight the intruder in your thoughts as if it was cancer.. You think that a perfect and loving god is going to torture us forever; we think that ya'll are mentally ill and in need of medical treatment.. Which is the more offensive position?. Yeah, that's what I thought.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:55 am |
  10. Joey

    It is time for the true majority to rise in America and say no to these stupid fruitloops. We don't have to elect these toads to any office. We can give them the religious test like they would like to give us. We can vote for the President. We can say no to mormonism and other fringe people. We can endorse people who would represent those of all interests. We can reward free thinkers with our votes. And we should.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:37 am |
  11. memphispiano

    Just when I think things can't get worse in America, I read this forum. What ever happened to civil people and discourse? I personally find Jon Stewart funny...however, if you can't see that he crossed the line here, then you are a part of the problem. The skit was in poor taste and offensive whether you agree with the general thought or not. If the posts on this forum are indicative of where the nation is going, I am worried for my children.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:35 am |
    • wolfpackbob

      Well said.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:40 am |
    • Woooooot

      Then teach your children how to argue their point properly. Many MANY people who have commented here about Jon Stewart attacking christians have not watched the show and don't realize that he makes fun of his own religion too. All these people are doing is regurgitating what they hear from their pastors/priests/parents/coworkers/etc and not getting the facts straight. Tell your children not to make an ass of themselves on the internet so other people won't have to point out their logical fallacies.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • MesaMom

      I find Rush Limbaugh offensive so I don't watch him. No one speaks the truth like Jon Stewart and it's too bad if it hurts.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:43 am |
    • bwhitten

      You crossed the line with your "civil discourse" and "part of the problem comment". I demand an apology. Your kids should and probably are ashamed of you and your opinions. I feel sorry for them that they have to grow up in a household such as yours.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:50 am |
    • Keith

      Rush is nationally syndicated on radio at NOON as a NEWS show. Stewart is on CABLE at 11pm and is a COMEDY show. Have you seen Tosh.0? change the channel and or don't pay for it.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Menlow

      So what if it was in poor taste and offensive? Think Borat. The point is the league called it hate speech and tried to get him fired and Delta caved in to this shameless economic black.mail. You are not required to find every joke funny or every idea valid, but you should not suppress free speech to allow the easily offended to feel more comfortable. Think founding fathers–think consti.tution. Please, think for your self.

      May 9, 2012 at 10:15 pm |
  12. MesaMom

    The Catholic church is getting a bit crazy and intrusive. They just totally validated Jon's point. Much love to Jon Stewart. The only TV show I watch regularly. BTW, I'm Christian and was not offended by the skit.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:35 am |
    • MesaMom

      Oh, and Delta has just lost my business.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:36 am |
  13. Ripedia

    On behalf of myself and the vast majority of other Catholics, I'd like to say that Bill Donohue does not speak for us. He is a professional whiner who spews hate-filled nonsense and expects to be treated like Martin Luther King for it. The best media portrayal of him was on South Park, where he was depicted using violence to get what he wanted and locking up Jesus and the Pope for disagreeing with him.

    Needless to say, I won't be flying Delta from now on.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:34 am |
  14. Joey

    Women in our country better wake up. There are women who evidently want to be property of their husbands; however, I bet the majority do not. They should listen to the national debate. After all, they don't want to be the one riding on top of the car getting hosed off like the Romney dog when they lose control of their bowels.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:34 am |
    • nadinesh

      Boy, was that well said!

      May 9, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
  15. Renee

    I've got two words for you Delta: Bye Bye

    May 9, 2012 at 11:32 am |
  16. dichotomydan

    Retarded thumpers...f you Donohue.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:32 am |
  17. Chuck

    I'm going to boycott the Catholic church for the last two thousand years of war, torture, etc. The crusades, Spanish inquisition, killing of those who didn't believe, forced confessions/conversions, giving aid to fugitive Nazi's, child abuse, etc. What's worse? Jon Stewart or all of those things I just mentioned?

    May 9, 2012 at 11:31 am |
  18. n8263

    Donohue wants to impose Catholic Sharia law on all Americans, and then claims to be offended when decent people like Stewert fight back. I do not know what else to say other than what an asshole!

    May 9, 2012 at 11:31 am |
    • cbus

      huh? asking for an apology for broadcasting a picture of the Holy Family in front of a naked woman's crotch is equivalent to pushing sharia law? I think you're being a bit hysterical.

      May 9, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • nadinesh

      The "holy family"? My real concern is the Church's manipulation of this so-called "holy family" concept tokeep women second-class citizens. Please keep your hypocritical sanctimony to yourself. Show a little concern for the women being victimized rather than the "holy family."

      May 9, 2012 at 12:09 pm |
    • Primewonk

      " broadcasting a picture of the Holy Family"

      Holy Crap!! The are pictures of the holy family? When, exactly were these pictures taken? Please provide a detailed description of the camera used. Was it film, or digital?

      May 9, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • Hemming

      Besides he didn't just ask for an apology–he used economic black.mail to try to force his view on everyone else by using the pc buzz words "hate speech." Delta should have been smart enough to see through this immediately and should have had someone smart enough to realize this organization is a sliver extremist group and does not represent catholics or the Catholic Church. Delta deserves what they get and no one should contribute any money to the hate,mongers that is the league.

      May 10, 2012 at 12:47 am |
  19. Ronald Raygun

    catholics.. lol.. religion... LOL

    May 9, 2012 at 11:31 am |
  20. Joey

    I think there were some studies done on that issue regarding the IQ and educational level of Fox News viewers. I think it showed their IQ to be quite low.

    May 9, 2012 at 11:28 am |
    • FactsAreGood

      Can you point to URLs to confirm these studies. In my experience, it's people who label entire groups who are the dumb ones.
      Re the actions of Delta, they are not seeking to silence or censor anyone. They simply do not want to be associated with Stewart's new brand of humor, which has gone from classy and smart to Maher-like offensive. BTW, I am an Independent voter who usually votes Democratic.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • Jacques Strappe, World Famous French Ball Juggler

      Actually that study was on how well-informed the viewers were. Fox News was pretty low. Viewers of Colbert, Stewart, O'Reilly and Rush Limbaugh, NPR listeners were pretty high. Next were the major news stations like CNN and local newspapers. Then you had people who got information from online blogs and Fox News, local television stations and network morning shows. Fox News wasn't last but it was pretty low.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • jim

      Quite low? Stereotyping ones intelligence based on their moral and political values is just plain dumb. As ignorant as stereotyping ones moral judgement based on the others religeous faith or lack of. Sorry Joey but you are not making any contributions to this debate with your stupid stereotype kinds of arguments.

      May 9, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • cbus

      No one is debating the fact the fox news is horrible journalism. So is MSNBC. They are both propaganda machines for their respective factions. You can be Catholic and Christian and still recognize that.

      May 9, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
    • Geo

      While I see the hypocrisy, inconsistency and stupidity of many of Fox News "news" articles and actively avoid their telecasts, your use of "IQ" and it's relationship to policies/political stance/etc is not factual.

      First of all, IQ does not go hand in hand with how someone's critical thinking and/or objective analysis. To others points above, perhaps the Fox News supporters/watchers "test" as being less informed, victim of "group think" or unable to think critically or objectively.

      You weaken your argument when you use inaccurate information/data.

      May 9, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
    • Primewonk

      There are numerous scientific research studies looking at IQ and political ideation. Kanawaza and his group looked at young adults who self identified as conservative or liberal. The liberal group had IQs on average 11 points higher than the conservatives – 106 to 95.

      Numerous other studies have linked brain structure and physiology with political ideation.

      There are also specific genetic differences betwwen liberals and conservatives.

      May 9, 2012 at 1:12 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.