State Farm Brought Out the Worst in Humanity With a Simple Twitter Ad

Looking for racist trolls? State Farm is there.
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Every year around this time, social media feeds fill up with pictures of friends getting engaged. It’s like a holiday law. So it’s natural, if cynically irksome, for companies to try to cash in on all that holiday love and jewelry. That’s what State Farm Insurance did just before Christmas with their #ProtectTheBling ads. Just a simple campaign to try to get customers to increase their coverage while celebrating love, right?

Ugh. No, of course it can’t be that simple and sweet. This is Twitter we’re talking about. Rather than see a picture of a couple getting engaged, many people couldn’t make it past the skin colors of the models and decided that the image of a black man proposing to a white woman was a harbinger of the apocalypse and the utter downfall of humanity.

I’m going to suggest you don’t spend too much (or any!) time reading through the comments on that tweet’s thread, and I don’t want to embed the hate here. But whatever you’re imagining, it’s there: disgusting memes and photoshopped images, false statistics, and hateful words all referencing domestic violence, AIDS, divorce, rape, abandonment … it just goes on and on with every despicable thing you can think of. People spent the day calling the ad “disgusting” and, of course, threatening to switch insurance plans. (I wonder how many of those threats came from actual State Farm customers? I’d bet closer to few than many.) In fact, GEICO seems to have had their reply-bot set to tweet to anyone who mentions the company, causing many to call them out for cashing in on hatred.

And that hatred stayed there, piling on that tweet for far too long before the respite came, but come it did. And that, I suppose, is the closest we can come to a silver lining—that we, as a people, are done ignoring the evil. There may always be disgusting, racist hatred, but there is more love. Within a day or two, the good fight was being waged.




Love wins.

(via Complex, image from Twitter via Complex)

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Vivian Kane
Vivian Kane (she/her) is the Senior News Editor at The Mary Sue, where she's been writing about politics and entertainment (and all the ways in which the two overlap) since the dark days of late 2016. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri, where she gets to put her MFA to use covering the local theatre scene. She is the co-owner of The Pitch, Kansas City’s alt news and culture magazine, alongside her husband, Brock Wilbur, with whom she also shares many cats.