Join Church Of Nationwide Insurance, Get Accident Forgiveness

Sean received an exciting promotional letter from Nationwide Insurance a few weeks ago. Did you know that Nationwide has its own imaginary patron saint? It’s true! Is this mailing a lighthearted way to sell the idea of “accident forgiveness,” or a culturally and religiously insensitive ad campaign? Sean thinks it’s the latter. What do you think?

I just wanted to share my early morning experience. I was going
through my mail, and came across this interesting letter from
Nationwide. It was a promotional letter inviting me to take advantage
of their Accident Forgiveness selling point. It was written in
Spanish.

I didn’t give it any mind, because I am Hispanic, until I read it in
further detail. It was written on behalf of “San Disculpeiro”, a saint
that was trying to sell me the whole Accident Forgiveness deal, his
business is forgiving drivers. A picture was included, with a
Caucasian male posing as a saint while trying to look funny.

At that point I was confused. I was also offended because here I am
receiving a letter in Spanish from a company I’ve never done business
with (assuming that I couldn’t speak English), written from “someone”
(Nationwide) role playing as a saint during Lent, promoting car
insurance. I don’t appreciate unsolicited mail, especially the kind
that contains religion mocking humor. Had the letter not been in
English on its reverse side, I would have go so far as saying that the
letter was keeping the Hispanic Catholic stereotypes alive.

I don’t expect many people to be offended, but regardless, it’s still
tasteless. San Disculpeiro, lo siento mucho, pero prefiero GEICO.

There is no patron saint of accident forgiveness, or even a patron saint of car accidents, but if you’re looking for a patron saint of drivers, go for St. Frances of Rome or St. Fiacre.

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