Toronto-based ice cream company "Sweet Jesus" is famous for its unconventional marketing - from humorous religious references to advertisements featuring images of vampiric children and upside-down crosses. Apparently, they also make great ice cream. The company enjoyed tremendous success in Canada and quickly became a widely-recognized chain.
But things hit a snag when Sweet Jesus decided to open several locations over the border to the south. The company's provocative imagery, which posed no issue for Canadian customers, has sparked outrage among Christian groups in the United States.
Thousands of angry Christians quickly mobilized to protest the ice cream chain, which they claim is "blasphemous" and an insult to Christianity.
They began circulating numerous online petitions which condemn the "Satanic symbolism" found in Sweet Jesus's marketing efforts. The petitions also demanded that the company change its name immediately.
"Sweet Jesus is all about trashing Christianity and mocking the saving work of our Lord Jesus Christ," one petition states. "If anything could qualify as hate speech, this is it."
Petition supporters object to certain imagery used in the advertising such as the inverted "t" in Sweet (which forms and upside-down cross) or the lightning bolt symbol that replaces the "s" in Jesus (which critics say mirrors the symbol used by the infamous "SS" in Nazi Germany).
Even Catholic League President Bill Donohue jumped on board, ordering an ice cream boycott last week:
"I would obviously encourage a boycott of the company. Anyone who is misappropriating a [Christian] symbol, or deliberately using satanic symbols to market a product to unsuspecting consumers, is demonic," Donohue said. "The whole purpose of this is to stick it to Christians and this being Holy Week in particular, it is all the more egregious."
Sweet Jesus Not Backing Down
Despite ramped-up public pressure, the owners of Sweet Jesus say they won't be changing their name. They insist it's not meant to be a religious statement, and certainly wasn't intended to offend anyone. The name apparently originated from a particularly memorable customer who, upon trying the ice cream for the first time, loudly remarked "Sweet Jesus, that's good!"
In the words of company co-founder Andrew Richmond: "Sweet Jesus is an honest reflection of our experiences and that of our customers, and how they react when they try our product. In our experience, the majority of people understand that we're not trying to make a statement about religion."
"Unfortunately, some people just don't understand the brand," explained company executive Jeff Young.
Is There A Double Standard?
Christian groups have complained that not only is Sweet Jesus offensive, but its defenders are hypocritical. They argue that the fact this is even up for debate betrays a public bias against Christianity.
"We'd never allow a company called 'Sweet Muhammad'", they point out, "so why is Jesus OK?"
This argument obviously overlooks the fact that "Sweet Jesus" is a relatively common phrase heard frequently outside of church. It typically conveys surprise or excitement something you might say after a life-altering ice cream cone, for example.
That being said, the company's advertising does seem intentionally provocative and could prove offensive to people of deep faith convictions.
Do you think Sweet Jesus should change its image, or are Christian groups overreacting?
Yes, there's a double standard. Christians have advanced over the last 1000 years, other groups haven't. "I'm offended" is a simple complaint for some groups, but for the less socially advanced it's a battle cry. If the name of an ice cream cone offends you, don't buy it. When you whine about it, you lose credibility. When you kill because of it, you lose your humanity. When you laugh about it, you prove the depth of your faith.
Hails Ice Cream! I am ordering some of that for my house now
The ice cream franchise's usage of a base, but very southern coloquiallism referring to the name and nature of Jesus the Christ is truly sad, and displays the owner's lack of respect for followers of Jesus, the Annointed. They don't need my money; and I don't need the junk that they sell.
I'd love to try some of that ice cream. Can't wait 'til it gets down to Texas. I heard it will even make a person talk in tongues. To that I can only say hallelujah!
I totally agree.
I think that the company probably is mocking Christianity. That said we have become a little to sensitive about things like this. They are not hurting anyone and I would not buy from a company that is doing what they are doing. They have a right to name their ice cream whatever they want. You don't have to eat it. I would like to see them maybe come up with a flavor like Muhammad Crunch and see how others react to that.
I heard that Jesus appeared before the owner of that that company and told him to name it that. Not only that but some of the ingredients floated down from heaven, while a heavenly harp played The Ice Cream Man, and Jesus told them to use those ingredients in a particular ice cream called Manna Delight. And those who eat it are supposed to receive a special blessing from sweet fucking Jesus himself.
There would never be a Muhammad crunch... The people who follow Muhammad have a very serious belief and conviction in the words that they follow... American Christians they just like to whine and cry like all the little Millennial kids do... That is part of why it has become a watered-down thing in America that the new youth does not respect or believe
That's a fairly far-fetched evaluation, and more than a little biased. I don't know many Christians whose behavior resembles Millennials'.
You're not, perhaps, advocating for christians (small 'c' intended) to be more viloent in their protests, are you? Say a beheading or mass bombing?
Really......All the IMPORTANT issues in USA and this gets attention????? As an Ordained Minister I personally find it amusing and NOT offensive. Lighten up people. God obviously has a sense of humor considering She created Men. (Sarcastic)
Right on Jolene God does have a sense of humor.
Jolene, I could not agree more.
You hit the nail on the head! If you don't like it, don;t buy their ice cream. They are just doing this foolishness to get the attention that thin skinned people will give it. If we don't bite, their ploy will not work. And more importantly, it will be an excellent example for those religions that have not learned the tolerance that Christians have, or should have, learned.
Tolerant Christians? That's the biggest joke of the last two millenniums. They're lucky the rest of us have tolerated their BS as long as we have. But don't expect that to last forever, or even much longer.
Hails! In a world of point-and-click absolute truths the flighty answers in this idea of just believe in it some s*** called faith... I love it as if they never had a leg to stand on in the first place... now let's listen to the tolerant Christians tell us how ice cream is bad but our cheating horrible orange president is awesome
Bravo Carl Elfstrom! Christians have tortured, burned, banned and persecuted non-christians for millennia and now THEY are offended by the name of an ice cream company? The irony is almost too much to bear.
An excellent reply, Jolene! I couldn't possibly agree more!
Praise the Goddess! Blessed be! Let's all laugh at those silly Christians.
Great response, Jolene! Totally agree with you. It is just a name
Couldn't agree more, Jolene!! All of these smoke screens that are used to take our attention away from the truly important issues going on in our world today! We are talking about WORDS! And they only have as much power as we give them. Don't like the name? Don't buy the product!! And I totally agree with you on another point as well. God definitely has a great sense of humor!!!
Personally, I think the Christians complaining about this need to grow a slightly thicker skin and not take everything as an "attack on Christianity." It was bad enough when they thought that people saying "Happy Holidays" was condemning Christmas, which it was not.
What about the so-called "Christians" who blast Islam and insult the teachings of the Qur'an without even understanding what is in their own Bible?
Jolene - Well stated! I like your thinking!
Of course they’re mocking Christianity. You’d be an idiot not to see that. And that’s kinda gross. But you’d also be an idiot to go around, attempting to silence everyone with whom you don’t agree. Life’s too short.
Here is just one more excuse for Christians to complain about persecution and disrespect. All of this complaining seems to me NOT very Christian. (What Would Jesus Do? I honestly think he'd eat the ice cream and smile.) Give us all a break "Christians", you're NOT being persecuted, and least NOT in America, and, after all, IT"S JUST ICE CREAM.
411 for the blind who cant see... prayer has been removed from our schools. GOD has been removed from the pledge of allegiance. Bibles are being banned all over America. GOD believing Americans have been dwnied their constirutional rights to pray over their food in restaurants. . . I could go on but I wont. I will offer you asvice instead... open your eyes and stop making ifnorant comments. What would Jesus do? LOVE EVERYONE.
It's ice cream. People need to get over themselves. If the marketing offends you, don't buy the product. These are the same people who scream "free speech!" in the face of the vilest white supremacist rantings, and have no problem lobbying to put their slogans and verses in public places frequented by diverse groups.
Grow a thicker skin and care about something that matters.
Absolutely on point!
Making a fuss gives the publicity that the company so badly wants, best ignore it in my opinion and Christians can continue to honour the name to which every knee shall bow and tongue confess is Lord.
Christians always bow down and kiss ass when people won't bow down and kiss their filthy feet. Jesus screwed the world, and so would his assinine followers, if we let them.
It's just another brick in the wall.
Just an observation: Whatever happened to the "Many colors of Benetton"?
United... “United colors of Benneton”
BRHAHAHAHAHA this is amusing!
The ridiculous things people allow themselves to get pushed around by. You're not the once doing this, they are. Mind your own busy and focus on more important matter. THIS ISN'T EVEN WORTH GIVING IT ATTENTION UNLESS YOU WANT ICE CREAM.
PERSONALLY I PREFER BENN & JERRY'S ICE CREAM. HERE, WE SAY, SWEET JESUS...BEN & JERRY'S ICE CREAM IS GGGGGGOOOOOODDDDDDD.
Ben & Jerry? Contains excessive chemicals (listed & unlisted). Thou shall not defyth thee temple.
I think Bluebell is the best, but who can afford it ? Kroger brand is almost as good,and anyone can afford that. I think I'll buy a gallon of it today, and stick a cross in it before I eat it.
Went into the confessional booth (on my own) when 5 or 7 yo. Told the voice behind the sliding door I made fun of the pew's by holding my nose when ppl said the word. He asked; if I thought that was a sin? I said; I not know. He gave me 3 "Hail Marys" & 2 "Our Fathers" as punishment. When was 8 or so I asked the minister what INRI at the top of the cross meant. He said; "I'm Nailed Right In". For the ppl that have Autism. I was over 20 when I realized he was flipping me a load of humor. The INRI have been in my head for decades. Asburger or other light duty versions of said ailment. I will say, humor is one way to offset / compensate for the inability to keep up with the average Joe. From the bit I have seen here. I have no problem w / it. Churches teach their readers well... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghkfFhPmbfM AND https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FCRzjRxmvgI If the product is healthy, I'll eat some.
You must only shop in health food stores. I bet your as skinny as a man who's been nailed to a cross, and think that looks healthy too.
I hope you live to be a very old man, with all the problems that afflict the very old. You deserve it, for eating nothing but that health food junk, and touting it wherever you go. That will be your just reward, and your karmic retribution.
I didn't know that. PARTY POOPER! HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!
I find the ones that whine the most are the ones that need to pay attention to their own actions. I can't wait to try some..
Don't take offense.There getting lots of Free publicity.Take things too seriously. I want to try some !
This is so "typical"! If this "offends" you, don't buy the ice cream, but don't decide what OTHERS could or should buy! How dare they DEMAND that the chain change its name? Some people need to grow a sense of humor.
GOOD MORNING, I MUST SAY SOME REALLY GREAT COMMENTs / POSTs this MORNING, USUALLY TOO MUCH ADO, ABOUT NOTHING !!!
Hi John, Thought you would say something.
Hi Linda. I'm glad you made it back safely from the protests. Welcome home.
Always do, Carl lol
South Florida prob has hundreds of Jesus businesses. Damn Lighten up.
Jesus Christ doesn't have exclusive rights to the name Jesus. A lot of Hispanics are named Jesus, but pronounce it differently than we say it in English. And I wouldn't be at all surprised if some of them named their businesses by that name in south america or Spain. As a matter of fact I'd be more surprised if they didn't. Maybe not an ice cream company, but atleast a Jesus Tacos, or Jesus Burritos.
Oh boo hoo. Sorry I do not feel very empathic. After all, what goes around comes around. Christians have committed horrible, murderous acts of genocide throughout the Americas for centuries, now we should feel sorry for them?. They raped, ensured they took what they believed was their god-given right, and called my people heathens, even though we were and still are spiritual. It is called :walking your talk." Every breath we take is a holy act of gratefulness. Get over yourselves christians, take responsibility for the harm you have caused millions, right here, not just around the world.
Cathy grow up All religions have acted in the same oppressive manner just like your “spiritual “ Thanks for giving me a half hearted vapid laugh A reverend without empathy....sounds right
For everyone who is attacking Christians here just remember your religion or spiritual religion has produced the same oppressive constructs that societies have suffered under so people need to get off your high horse Learn some history folks
Thank You Jm. Nice to see some common sense here.
At least you can tell that nothing about Jm is better than common.
The past is gone forever, idiotic JM. All we have is right now. And right now its a bunch of evil, ignorant Christians who are being assinine fools again, just like yourself.
The last time it was Christians burning witches. Now its time for Christians to get crucified (at least figuratively). What goes around comes around,JM. And I'll be be driving those nails harder and harder, until every last one you gets your just reward. And as I so Will so note it be! There's a big difference between black magic and protection Magick. And we aren't the ones who turn the other cheek. Blessed Be !!!
Jm, it sounds like you're talking about the empathy of christian reverends, but ULC is not a christian sect or ministry, and has our ULC ministries need not have anything to do with us being empathetic, smartass! Not only will I not show empathy for your foolish coents, but not even sympathy. The only thing I will show you is zero tolerance. I have quite a way with words, and am looking forward to it most gleefully, so bring it on,Fool!
You know what Jim, I would look in the mirror. Did I attack you in any way? As a minister, where do you get off believing that it is ok to attack me? If you do not like my opinion, that is fine, but do yourself a favor and show some respect. Respond to the words you don't like, not the person. Try to demonstrate maturity of thought.
Hi Catherine that was Jm Not Jim. Have a great day.
Opps, sorry, thanks for the clarification!
I don't think it's a double standard, I think it's a double scoop.
On a boat load of issues we people of God often forget that God is all, God can change all. We pick our little protest, carry a sign, yell at people. Sure there maybe things I do not like but they all are beyond my pay grade. So pray.....trust....the Lord will take care of all. Have some faith. May we all have a blessed day.
Well said Peter
That's right Peter, sit back with Simple Simon, and don't act on your faith. Such faith without acts is dead anyway. At least Jm is an actor, but he won't make it to Hollywood. He wouldn't get more of an audience than a flock of pidgeons in an otherwise vacant lot.
How about a bar franchise called "Mo'hammered" or topless bars called "You Mecca Me Hot"
I'll drink to that, while eating my Jesus ice cream.
Just because you are offended does not make you right....
Right or wrong I'm having fun anyway.
I think we should respect the commandment of not saying the lords name in vain. I know we do it socially but advertising it to me is too much. Let’s have a little class people. If Jesus does come back I don’t think he’ll be amused...just saying
Whose commandment, and what lord are you referring. Is he a member of the British House Of Lords ? I'm an American citizen who is not in the military, so I am not subjected to lords or commands.
Sorry...it's wrong. I have no issue with the freedom of speech...but what a moral cost.
"Sorry…it’s wrong. I have no issue with the freedom of speech…but what a moral cost."
I don't understand. What moral cost?
1. a lesson, especially one concerning what is right or prudent, that can be derived from a story, a piece of information, or an experience. "the moral of this story was that one must see the beauty in what one has" synonyms: lesson, message, meaning, significance, signification, import, point, teaching "the moral of the story" 2. a person's standards of behavior or beliefs concerning what is and is not acceptable for them to do. "the corruption of public morals" Peace
I understand the dictionary definition of moral. How does that relate to a "moral cost"?
Moral cost is the lack of respect used...using the Lords name and phrases from the bible as your advertisements. Most of us were raised to show repect for others along with other morals we learn from our parents and families. Not using your moral code or if you don't have one, is a sad example for everbody.
Just as the elderly pass away so do their cryptic old ass ideas just give it time we'll all enjoy ice cream before too long
News flash, Kleggy - you morals are not my morals. Who are you to declare immoral what God has declared moral?
Are people forced to buy the ice cream? Is it made with all natural ingredients?
Bill Fox, are you suggesting that if the ice cream was made with all natural ingredients that people could be forced to buy it? What country, may I ask, are you in, sir ?
It seems to me that everyone has an opinion about everything which makes reading the online news tedious and annoying. Many of these opinions only serve to display the shallowness of the contributors. Some are insightful and well thought out.Trump should start running the country, stop tweeting, pay more attention to his constituents and stop firing his staff. If he keeps this up, he'll become a one man show. Ban assault weapons now. Retrain inept law enforcement who shoot a man armed with a cell phone in the back 20 times! For shame on their judgment and their poor aim. Religion and politics don't mix well. Want to start an argument, express an opinion about religion or politics. In many cases, children turn out well in spite of their parents. Well, have at me folks!
Well said Bud I agree.
Kleggy, the bible sucks, and so does whoever raised you to have such screwed up morals !
Wake up people! This is Luciferian! Can't you see the symbols all over this? Do your research. Shut this place down. Please expose them. For the Children. Watch #QNN #TrueLiesQNN for the truth. Please wake up before it's too late.
Diane, get a life. It's just ice cream for Christ's sake. You do know God could careless about trivial stuff like this. You are the one who needs to wake up and eat some ice cream and take a chill pill.
Diane, you need professional help. Badly. Please seek it before you hurt yourself or your children.m
Silly Christians. They neither know the creators name in the Bible they claim to believe in, is from the letters YHWH, roughly pronounced Yahuah, that his son's name means Yahweh salvation, and pronounced Yahushua. The made-up word Jesus is a concoction of English French German Latin and Greek. It is not transliterated as names are supposed to be. Jesus is derived from the name HeZeus, who was a man, the savior of The Druids who was crucified for the sins of the world in about 834 BCE. HeSeus was voted in by the Nicene council as ordered by Constantine. Imagine being upset over an ice cream company using a fake name. Perhaps they could rename the ice cream, " Sweet Fake Name."
After reading all these posts, I don't see the big fuss is about. I'm Pagan and I for one don't believe in Christian imaginary Jesus or God. I've heard people in the North and South Say Sweet Jesus forever.
Yes, Linda and a lot of good their savior and their "faith" is doing for the world. They are as mean, corrupt, bigoted, misogynistic and hateful today as they were as people described in the Old and New Testaments.
I have to agree with alot of comments that christians need to show some tougher skin and lighten up, but in the same sense looking at the adds you know they are intentionally provoking a religious group for shock factor and FREE publicity! That means FREE advertising! For the company to say ''it’s not meant to be a religious statement, and certainly wasn’t intended to offend anyone.'' Is total Bullshit, if it were just the name then ok over reacting. But the use of crucifixes, rosary beads, and crown of thornes,(just a few right off hand, I'm sure theres more subtle ones) added to upside down crosses & biblical references is intendid to offend a specific group. If the same thing was done to many other religious groups there would have been public outrage and disgust and outcry for justice! And maybe even worse. Why is it that in the name of making a dollar is it ok to belittle any person or group? That's the real question here. No matter what, they won and they are sitting back reaping the rewards. I just have one question for everyone to think about, your religious preference aside ''How many of you would let your child walk around with an upside down cross on a t-shirt? After all, an ice cream companies target demographic is children isn't it? most of the adds all dipict children don't they? At the end of the day our biggest problem is greed allowing the division of all people, races and religions. Just saying.
You are 100% correct Frank. Although based on some of the posts I see there are a few folks here that would have no problem with their kids in an upside down cross T shirt. I really had not noticed the hatred people have towards Christians till I started looking at these posts. I know if it were Muslim, Pagan Etc it would not be tolerated at all.
I don't hate Christians. i don't have no use for them. However my family is mostly C. I tolerate them because they are my FAMILY. They don't try to shove it down my throat.
I don't see where anyone is trying to shove Christianity down any ones throat. What I see on these posts for the most part (not all) but for the most part is a lot of really sad people. I'm new to these posts about a month now. I thought originally it would be a forum to hear different points of view on different religions. I say religions because technically even atheism is a religion, its ones belief. Instead I see a bunch of folks who are ignorant and want to stay that way. They have no desire to hear any one's point of view and when someone disagrees with their point of view they resort to the schoolyard bully and start attacking the person even thought they don't even know that person. They have to make themselves feel good at the expense of others. We try and discuss issues and the problems of the world and just reading these blogs shows us, yes we are the problem. Linda you say you don't hate Christians you tolerate "them". As if they are not part of the human race. People like Carl who has no respect for anyone not even himself. John who cant post unless he is trying to belittle someone. Never really has an original thought other than to try and hurt someone. we are supposed to be ordained in the ULC which I thought was an open forum for different belief systems. I believe what I believe but have for most of my life thought that no one religion was right or wrong. That most have the same basis and most do. I have visited a number of different faiths over the years to listen and learn. That is not what we do here. For people who I thought was open minded and I joined because I thought I might learn. Boy was I wrong on this one. The only thing I think I can learn from these blogs here at the ULC is how people hate each other. Not what I expected.
Agreed Jim, I have been a member for awhile and have not posted before now. There are few that just want to hide behind a faceless blog and stir shit up, cause greif and go completely off topic but not everyone. I to have looked at many religions and the one common problem with all of them is us. We as a race of human beings, our ignorance, our intolerance of each other, our twisting of what ever religion you follow to suit our own needs and agendas. I have my own convictions with most organized religions, but I have also seen what the power of faith can do for people, in all religions. No one is right or wrong when it comes to what or who they beleave in, but no one has the right to harm anyone else in any way, this world would be a much better place if people left each other alone.'' Hey my next door neighbour is praying to a rock!'' Who gives a rat's ass as long as he dosn't hit anyone with it!
People need to remember or at least try:
As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexatious to the spirit. - Max Ehrmann
Jim, try not to let the door hit you in the rear on your way out.
BTW If you see, Muslims & Jews are being harassed and some are killed. Where does it say C are being killed for that?
It comes down to freedom. So many Christians want their symbols all over public buildings, but would fight violently against any other religious symbolism. Those are the same hypocrites who are upset now. Are they upset about Heavenly Hash flavor in grocery stores? They call it "Satanic"7% I don't think it is, but it MUST be allowed the same freedoms as Christians demand.
Too frivolous to think about.
Yet thinking Obama is from Kenya isnt? Lol !
It's ignorant for you to blindly accept the sketchy Hawaiian birth certificate. Doesn't put you on a more sound intellectual footing than anyone else, and you would have to be a brainwashed idiot to think it would. You cannot curtail free thought by ridiculing it. It is more ignorant to take someone at their word than to be suspicious and doubtful.
At least I am not so dishonorable as to make up stupid shit about people and say it as if I know it for a fact.
I think that if you are arguing about ice cream, you have far too much time on your hands. It's fun, clever and satirical advertising. It's not called " hail satan" ice cream. Relax people. Oh and I do believe the " catholic league president" has bigger issues on his plate, pun intended, than ice cream. He needs to re-focus.
Now I have to go try this ice cream and see if it's as good as they say.
Have a wonderful day.
I'm with you Rev. Greg. Let's go for some ice cream.
Looking at the symbolism it is using the Sig rune, and it is an ancient symbol for Sun, and all of us know the the Nazi's took many holy symbols from long ago and put their own spin on them, we could say bastardized them. One of the more famous is the swastika, it is used with the Native Americans, India, China, and much of the world for thousands of years to mean things such as Protection, Mother Earth, Father Sky, and other Good things.
I think it is interesting that someone would change the S in Jesus to a Sig meaning sun, and Christ is the Sun and Son depending on where you are in the world.
This people up in arms over the advertising means that it is going to either improve their sales, or people will get upset enough to not buy the products. Also just think about some of the movies that had many Christians upset and they protested... The result was the makers of the films made more than they would have had none gave them the publicity. My guess is that this company is trying to play on the same thing. Who knows, it could have been someone involved in marketing that made the comments to get people upset in the first place, just so they could make money.
Canada where they are so religious being mainly Catholic. It makes those in the US look like pagans. One can look at what and how to push a brand. Make people talk about it and in this case buy and try it. Yes it is gimmick and it worked. Why it not label for Muslims one reason is that it has to passe and get a seal from a Muslim religious council.