I will not beat around this bush. This mpango wa kando bush business. And I frown at those clamoring for the recent TV ad titled weka condom mpangoni, to be withdrawn from the airwaves.
The message of this particular ad has unexpectedly tugged at the hem of society’s skirt: if you can’t abstain or commit to one partner, then use a condom if you care about your loved ones. Caring in this context alluding to avoiding pre marital pregnancies, and contracting STI’s- among them HIV and the related adverse effects it has on the family and society at large.
This ad come barely after Jimmy Gathu tried to drum it into the society that they should avoid eating side dishes and stick to the main course. According to his calculator, the side dishes were costly to make a habit of digging into using your bare hands, and chances were high that you’d get salmonella or some nasty food poisoning. He was just shy of condemning those who got food poisoning, but that would have countered the efforts of other message sponsors due to stigmatization, but that’s a point for another post.
Now, it is quite apparent that Jimmy’s plea and calculations fell on deaf ears- or that the audiences had earphone on and were jamming to a different tune all the while. I can safely assume that they were watching soaps and movies that have a lot of side dish eating touted as a good option when the main dish is cooked with the same ingredients, cooked and served at the same restaurant.
And if we know only too well that Jimmy failed to persuade us from digging into the side dishes with gusto, the other logical appeal is to do it with caution- eat with your own spoon and not your bare hands. When it comes to communicating for behavior change, I think the advert is spot on with its message. It has a logical appeal to those who choose to have the side dish. It also has an embarrassing appeal (this is a SquaredFactor theory). This works best for those of us in the society who choose to see or hear no evil even when they are the ones propagating the practice.
And for those clamoring for it to be pulled from the airwaves due to a sense of morality infringement, you’d better convince the sponsors that you have dropped that alluring, but dangerous side dish!