The Tim Tebow Focus on the Family Superbowl Ad

So I just finished watching the Superbowl, go Saints woot! And I caught the pro-life ad featuring Tim Tebow (a college football star) and his mother forFocus on the Family and I wanted to write down my thoughts before going to see what others said about it.

This ad sparked a lot of controversy because advertisements for advocacy groups aren’t normally allowed during the Superbowl. But for some reason CBS decided to take Focus on the Family’s ad, in spite of its controversial subject matter: abortion.

If it hadn’t been for the controversy over the ad I probably wouldn’t have paid attention to it. It was a really boring one compared to what you normally expect out of the Superbowl…and especially compared to the adorable ad that preceded it featuring Betty White. It started off with Tebow’s mom holding up a picture of him and saying:

I call him my miracle baby. He almost didn’t make it into this world. I can remember so many times when I almost lost him. It was so hard. Well, he’s all grown up now and I still worry about his health. You know with all our family’s been through we have to be tough.

At this point it feels like it might be an ad for a hospital or medical charity or something, I can see it ending with “thanks to the wonderful doctors at ______ I got to see my son win the Heisman.”

But what actually comes next is Tebow tackling his mother! What the??

And then there’s some banter between the two while Focus on the Family flashes their website, and that’s it! They want you to go to their website to hear the rest of Tim’s story, but I find the story as it’s represented in the commercial to be utterly uncompelling, so I don’t know why anyone would care to see the any more of it. But I guess I like torturing myself because I visited their website.

It links to a video of Tim’s parents talking about what happened, which is a snoozer about how they decided to go against their doctor’s recommendation to abort and risk his mother’s life, and how they’re so lucky because their baby came out healthy and grew up to be a role model and a football star. The message of the video is to put the baby’s life in god’s hands and to not abort but to have faith.

It’s a really dangerous message because although in the Tebows’ case everything worked out, other mothers may not be so lucky. Not to mention the pregnancy will not likely result in a football star. And for Mrs. Tebow to be preaching about not having an abortion is not fair. In her situation they intended to get pregnant, and she had the support of her husband to help her through her health issues throughout the pregnancy.

What about single mothers who can’t afford to take care of a child, or whose death would result in her other children becoming orphans? What about rape victims? It’s horrible to put this kind of shameless guilt trip on women who are going through the extremely difficult situation of choosing whether or not to abort.

The real kicker, and the part that makes me want to punch my computer screen, is when Mr. Tebow says tearfully to the camera: “Don’t kill your baby.” What a colossal asshole.

At the end of the video they quote from the Bible, John 10:10:

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

Basically saying that god is for life. Um news flash, even if you ignore all of the smiting god does throughout the Bible, if you believe that god designed the reproductive system then god is the biggest abortionist of them all. I’ve heard that between 30 and 50% of conceptions end in miscarriage (you can get some better numbers with references on Wikipedia). Is god killing all of those babies?
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2 Responses to “The Tim Tebow Focus on the Family Superbowl Ad”


  1. 1 Global Villager February 9, 2010 at 8:06 pm

    The reason that we have commercials like this is that some people do not have the ability to assess a situation beyond their own biases and their own experiences. In other words, they are unable to walk in someone else’s shoes. Or, put another way, they can’t see beyond the tip of their own nose.

    Empathy – the ability to share and understand another being’s emotions and feelings – is not natural to us. If it was, we would not be so polarized when it comes to issues like abortion or euthanasia. These issues can rarely ever be looked at in black and white – shades of gray are more appropriate.

    The lack of empathy is why women like Mrs. Tebow feel the need to tell other people what the ‘right answer” is. As you point out, the answer for her was to continue the pregnancy, it is unfortunate that she is blind to the circumstances that others may face. Unfortunate, despicable, sad….but typical.

    At least it was not the worst commercial – those godaddy.com ones are just awful – tacky tacky. I love the Budweiser one with the Clydesdale and the cow!

  2. 2 misunderstoodranter February 14, 2010 at 5:07 am

    A classic example of survivor bias – i.e. ‘it didn’t kill me to ignore the doctors – therefore it will not kill you’

    Never mind the consequences – everyone one is different, and this is why pro-choice is important. Every one’s personal circumstances are different, and every one’s attitude to risk is different.

    The more I look at pro-life campaigners arguments the more I am convinced that they can not see out side of their little world. Not everyone is a ‘stepford wife’ – some people are poor, some people make bad decisions, some people are sick or have complications, some people are just plain stupid or unlucky.

    To believe that everything we do is in ‘gods’ plan is just irrational – ‘that girl got raped because it was gods plan for her to have that child’….

    Repulsive.


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