If a dairy mascot is the focus of attention then we might be ready to move on from our crisis.
Though it had been announced weeks ago, as Alex Parker detailed when the initial announcement was made, for some reason this weekend saw social media perk up at the social shift that occurred. For some reason the company that produces Land O Lakes butter decided to remove the long-used female Native American logo it has used for nearly 100 years. And for some reason this was newsworthy.
Jake Tapper shared the old report, covered as it was at CNN, and it became a much-discussed item over the weekend. This is the kind of story that defines ‘’virtue signaling’’. In the grand scheme this is not a significant benchmark in history. During a pandemic crisis it is reduced to being less than trivial. Sure, people are hungry for a distraction in the news cycle, but also maybe we can look at this as a good sign. Maybe people are ready to start looking at things apart from the pandemic, possibly a sign we are ready to move on from it.
As expected, this move to expunge a long-on-the-shelf branding logo is rooted in the politically correct movement to declare any images of Native Americans is a sign of racial intolerance. The words of praise for this significant corporate decision carry all the intonation of grave progress being made in our culture. Politicians could not refrain from cashing in on the political currency.
Minnesota LT. Governor Peggy Flanagan expressed her delight as a Native American.
Thank you to Land O’Lakes for making this important and needed change. Native people are not mascots or logos. We are very much still here. https://t.co/uzKF3K6FEV
— Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan (@LtGovFlanagan) April 15, 2020
It seems a curious comment to make, announcing how you are ‘’still here’’ in light of the complete removal of Indian iconography. This, in concert with the company making no mention of the former logo at all in its press release about the packaging changes, is more of a practice of the company trying to memory-hole the issue.
Another politician taking things to an extreme was Ruth Buffalo, Representative from North Dakota. In praising the removal of the logo she attributed this to some rather stark imagery. Ms. Buffalo declared that not only was the image racist but it went ”hand-in-hand with human and sex trafficking of our women and girls.… by depicting Native women as sex objects.”
She said that — about a painted mascot on a box of butter.
Well with all of this focus returning to this crucial issue I take it to mean that we are willing to get worked up over issues apart from the coronavirus outbreak, and this is a healthy sign. Getting incensed over the graphics on a box of butter sticks can be an indicator that we are ready to move on from the recent stresses and anxiety.