By Chuck Donovan
A too-clever-by-half marketing team at Kraft Foods has come up with what they think is a hot seller: a contest offering a cash prize to the best YouTube video answering the question, “How has Miracle Whip Affected Your Relationship?” The winner of the contest, which runs until August 23, takes home (or to two homes, quite possibly) $25,000 to help pay for a wedding—or a divorce. Kraft officials have been stung by the criticism that has been justly leveled against the contest, which attempts to take a lighthearted and evenhanded stance of neutrality between marriage and divorce.
While divorce rates are thankfully not rising in the United States, divorce does extensive harm, some of which is masked by rising rates of cohabitation (with and without children present), where marriages do not occur in the first place. As data assembled by The Heritage Foundation at familyfacts.org shows, the U.S. divorce rate has declined from its peak in 1980 but remains high. Every year an estimated 1 million children undergo a family divorce, and evidence of the negative impacts on those children continues to accumulate. Can you picture beaming officials from the world’s second-largest food company handing out a prize to a downcast family while the kids gaze at the camera and ponder their uncertain future?