Pink slips in God’s marketing department

It seems a safe bet that God ranks up there with Coca-Cola and Anheuser Busch for brand market saturation. So many churches, so many customizable flexi-letter signs offering insight and encouragement to passing drivers as they head to the bar or wherever it is they’re going. Sometimes witty, occasionally poignant, often groan-worthy, and always with one goal: Getting people to think about God.

I’m pretty sure that if the pastor at the Westboro Baptist Church had run this sign by God prior to posting, it would not have gotten the thumbs-up. Reasons include (but may not be limited to):

  • First, and obvious to anyone with corporate experience: Don’t associate your CEO with abject cruelty to innocent victims as retaliation for the actions of others. (Canceling the free coffee in the break room because one of the salespeople consistently botches his Power Point presentations is no way to build team morale.) Even if God is a killer, you people to think of God vanquishing evil, or at least something annoying like mosquito. Snuffing fuzzy little synonyms for joy isn’t the kind of press God wants.
  • Next, there’s the spelling. The word is “masturbate”, and if they’d spelled it correctly, they would have been able to use the saved E to finish the last word of the message. However, I’m willing to forgive this one because it subliminally demonstrates that the folks at this church know so little about self-satisfaction that they don’t even know how to spell it. (Though the cynic on the committee in my brain thinks that exactly what they WANT me to think. Yeah, nice try.)
  • Finally, they need an editor, as this seems to imply that people should wait until marriage before masturbating. If you really want people to abstain until marriage, then you need to up the ante on the reward system to include other people’s genitalia. (Though on the other hand, this might stand up as written—they may not know much about auto-eroticism, but they seem to know a thing or two about marriage.)

All in all, the fine folks at the Westboro Baptist Church ought to put a little note in the Sunday bulletin: “Wanted: copywriter. One clever line per week that reflects well on the congregation, the clergy, and God. Immediate opening.”

(This photo came from CNN’s iReport. I prefer to think it wasn’t photoshopped.)

4 response to "Pink slips in God’s marketing department"

  1. By: Steph Posted: 03/11/2010

    Man, I am going to save that picture, and next time I’m having a bad day I’m going to pull it out and look at it and laugh and laugh and laugh. I *love* it. I actually love customizable flexi-letter church signs in general. Every apartment I’ve ever lived in has had a church either directly across the street or, in my current case, at the entrance to the complex, so there’s always been one around. Some of the ones in New York were *fabulous*, and I wish I had written them down because of course now I can’t remember them. The only one I never forgot was the slightly head-scratching inducing, “Noah was ready; are you?” (I suppose if I actually went to church I’d know if I should be preparing for forty days of rain.) And the one I live near now said, for a long time, “Don’t test the depth of the river with both feet.” Which has had me baffled since I saw it, especially as it seems to be preaching the opposite of faith. I don’t think anything will ever top this one, though. That’s awesome.

  2. By: William Reagan Posted: 03/11/2010

    Yeah, this one is so good I keep wondering if it’s real, or if it was put up momentarily then changed to something more suitable for a broad audience. I prefer to think it’s real, though I have no proof.

    That line about testing the depth — and your assessment — is awesome. (Frankly, if it’s deeper than three feet, it’s going to be hard for me to keep the other foot in the boat.) I learned of a FB group that collects these signs: http://www.facebook.com/search/?q=church+signs&init=quick#!/pages/Funny-Church-Signs/113117575769?ref=search&sid=1484298956.1713148693..1

  3. By: William Reagan Posted: 03/12/2010

    Not at all — thanks for confirming my suspicions, anonymous. And thanks for the link. (Though the support copy about the church is as unbelievable as the sign I posted.) (Though I stand by my critique of the spelling.) 😉

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