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Ram truck ad using MLK speech draws backlash
Published in 6-2-2018
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A Ram truck ad that used a speech by Martin Luther King Jr. is drawing a backlash. The ad shows people doing service-oriented tasks set against audio of King's speech, which urges people to be "great" by serving the greater good. It was supposed to highlight the volunteer program Ram Nation. But it was criticized by viewers and ad experts alike for forging too tenuous a connection with the civil rights hero. On Twitter, most people expressed the idea that using King's speech to "sell trucks" crossed a line between a heartfelt message and exploiting emotions just to push a vehicle. "The use of MLK to promote Ram trucks strikes many people as crass and inappropriate," said Tim Calkins, a marketing professor at Northwestern University.