AUSTRALIA, September 4, 2017 (News Corp Australia): The picture it sought to paint was one of common ground. Unity. The bringing together of diverse backgrounds around a common Aussie backyard barbecue. It didn't work. The Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) lamb campaign (video at "source" above) was referred to the Advertising Standards Bureau within days of its release over its lack of sensitivity in portraying divinities and religious leaders.
The simple fact it portrays opposing divinities and prophets -- such as Jesus, L. Ron Hubbard, Thor and Zeus -- was bound to provoke controversy. Even Mohammed gets a mention. The Meat & Livestock Australia lamb campaign advert brings together a range of divinities and prophets at an Aussie outdoor barbecue. What could possibly go wrong? Despite declaring "lets not get into religion at the table," it doesn't take its own advice. And stating "it's a nightmare catering for you lot with all your dietary requirements" was bound to bring on an inquisition.
But despite addressing the elephant in the room -- the ad makes one significant oversight when the agnostic host declares a toast "to lamb -- the meat we can all eat". Lord Ganesha doesn't eat meat. "This is a disrespect to Hindu religion, hurting our sentiments and a senseless campaign," one Facebook user posted on the campaign's page. "Your team has got it totally wrong by implying Lord Ganesha is having lamb at dinner table with other Gods. For your information, Hindu Gods and meat do not go together."
Yes, that's lamb on Lord Ganesha's plate. As a result, a Hindu group has formally asked the MLA to discontinue the ad and issue an apology for trivialising their deity. "Lord Ganesha was highly revered in Hinduism and he was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to be used in selling lamb meat for mercantile greed."
"Upset Hindus are urging Australia Advertising Standards Bureau to ban the new "You Never Lamb Alone" video ad launched on September 4 by Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), which seems to make fun of Lord Ganesha," its statement reads. "MLA should be mature enough to understand that "love united us and brought us together and not lamb meat".