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27 May, 2019 16:21

Just an ad: I am not giving Gillette’s cynical new trans promo the satisfaction of my ‘outrage’

Just an ad: I am not giving Gillette’s cynical new trans promo the satisfaction of my ‘outrage’

The new Gillette ad featuring a trans man learning to shave is not for me – and not because I am a 'cisgender man'. But because I still resent corporations who lecture me, while exploiting causes for their commercial benefit.

There is actually little wrong with the minute-long spot itself, starring Canadian Samson Bonkeabantu Brown ("It's not just me transitioning, it's everyone around me transitioning") and his supportive father ("Shaving is about being confident"). While the pseudo-spontaneous documentary approach is so much artifice, at least the tone is positive, even touching.

It might all be preachy, but unlike with your last big advert, you are not accusing me – a stranger – of being a misogynist and abuser through the screen just because of my chromosome alignment. So, that’s progress.

Also on rt.com Hack job: Gillette tries to teach men ‘social justice’, meets massive online backlash

But I find your executive's talk of “encouraging brands to find their authentic voice” and assertions that “consumers, investors and employees want to know what a brand believes in” a nauseating mix between corporate phoniness and a shallow savior complex.

I dislike the way you push my buttons so blatantly to provoke a reaction. “Are you progressive, then go on Twitter and share our ad, and say how multibillion giant Procter & Gamble is leading the battle for minority rights. Are you a conservative? Go online and rant about ‘go woke, go broke’ so that millennials can celebrate that they are not troglodytes like you.”

You wanted a reaction? Here is your support.

The outrage.

And this is your article, and your video views.

But I am not going to throw away my razor or buy one.

I am not going to get angry or inspired.” 

I am not even going to continue the “conversation” you started – since I don’t take my gender discussions from shaving ads.

By Igor Ogorodnev

Igor Ogorodnev is a Russian-British journalist, who has worked at RT since 2007 as a correspondent, editor and writer.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.