Is this new ad from McDonald’s in bad taste? It might be, if it had aired in America that is. A new spot for McDonald’s airing in Sweden compares employees of the fast food giant to soldiers, comparing their uniforms and camaraderie to that of members of an army who went through training or spent time in foxholes together. The commercial comes shortly after Sweden announced they would be reinstating the draft for the first year time since 2010 and would choose 4,000 people for mandatory enlistment. The commercial’s voiceover states:
“In uniform, we are all equal. Gender, ethnic background or sexual orientation is irrelevant. Nobody cares which god you pray to, or if you don’t pray at all. All we demand is that you’re a problem solver and focused on the goal… “Self-discipline, team spirit and cooperation has been shown to be the recipe for diversity, integration and really, really good hamburgers.”
Comparing fast food workers, most of them young men and women, to those who go off and fight for their country and potentially die for it as well probably wouldn’t go over well in the United States. It could be considered an uncomfortable (if inadvertent) commentary about how certain young people from certain backgrounds turn to the fast food industry or the army as a last resort when things get difficult and are not treated well when making that choice.