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

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.



Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.