During Holy Week in Spain, Burger King ran a borderline blasphemous ad for its vegan burgers. After sparking outrage, Burger King has retired its controversial ad campaign.
The company had displayed billboard advertisements using a paraphrase of Christ’s words at the last supper to promote its vegetarian hamburgers. These read “Come, all of you, and eat of it/him. It doesn’t have meat.” (“Tomad y comed todos de él. Que no lleva carne.”) The reference is most clearly to Matthew 26:26: “Take and eat; this is my body.”
Burger King has since apologized through its Twitter account:
We apologize to all those who may have felt offended by our campaign aimed at promoting our vegetable products during Holy Week. Our intention has never been to offend anyone and the immediate withdrawal of the campaign has already been requested.
This comes after #boycottBurgerKing began circulating on social media.
Jorge Buxadé, Vice-President for Political Affairs at VOX and chief of the party’s European Parliament delegation tweeted:
I don’t like seeing the logos of multinational companies frivolously devaluing our faith and the traditions of thousands of Spaniards.
Burger King is hardly to blame if its staffers were raised in an environment that fails to transmit a sense of sacredness, or of their ignorance of a sizable population of potential consumers who may take offense to this kind of thing. In the past, such a population has kept, and been kept, quiet. But we should not overlook the possibility that transgression and a distaste for religion, fashionable as these are, was also at play.
At a time when Holy Week processions in Spain have been violently interrupted by anti-Christian migrants, it is worth reflecting on how direct hostility and the negative consequences of immigration policy are but one prong in a pincer that also includes corporate power. The mainstream Left’s call for open borders and laxity towards certain kinds of violence, and the mainstream Right’s defense of the economic freedom of large multinationals are of a piece. Many of these multinationals seem to be engaged in a global push towards the erosion of the sacred and of local identity for the sake of quick consumption, fast food, and plastic disposables, glossing its products with moral veneers when needed—vegetarianism, in this case.
Carlos Perona Calvete is a writer for The European Conservative. He has a background in International Relations and Organizational Behavior, has worked in the field of European project management, and is currently awaiting publication of a book in which he explores the metaphysics of political representation.