The Cannes Lions Awards recently awarded their prestigious Silver Press Lion award to an advertisement that Kia Motors approved, paid for, and is distributing that promotes pedophilia and the sexualization of young girls. The ad depicts a male elementary school teacher helping a young female student after school who appears to be six or seven years old. He twists her trusting and benign schoolgirl questions into eroticized come-on lines and fantasizes about her, re-imagining her as a scantily clad teenage girl.
Millions of images and advertisements like Kia’s offensive ad are now exported around the world daily, intensifying the exploitation of girls and women as property and an exploitable commodity, causing increased violence against women and girls. Recent research shows that sexualization diminishes girls’ self-esteem and mental health, decreases their academic achievement in every subject and increases sexism among boys and men.
Write to Kia Motors and demand that they return this award, pull this offensive ad from ALL their global campaigns and offer a real apology that acknowledges the damaging impact that pedophilia and sexualization have on children, families, and the culture.