Most of us have become aware of the controversial Saturn commercial that features the burning of a Jamaican flag. The video which obtained over 700,000 YouTube views saw a great deal of dislikes and arguments that it was disrespectful to burn and step on the flag.
Addressing the issue, foreign affairs minister, Senator AJ Nicholson explained that there are strict guidelines governing how the flag should be treated.
However, he also stated that "the commercial appears to be well-intentioned, seeking to use the powerful symbolism of brand Jamaica to project the products and services of Saturn".
He continued: "The government welcomes any initiative which would serve to advance Jamaica's profile and image in the world." The electronics company has since extended an apology and subsequently withdrawn the advertisement.
TEENage wants to find out what are your views on the issue. What do you think about the commercial and are you satisfied with the government's response?
The action of burning the flag and allowing it to touch the ground is an act of disrespect to the country of Jamaica as a flag serves as a country's identity and as a symbol for a country's history. I would say that I am satisfied that government took some kind of initiative to stand up against it. And the company's withdrawal and apology should be accepted.
— Zakina Miller
A flag is a strong element of a nation and even though in the ad it was an accident, I still think its disrespectful to the Jamaicans. I also believe that the government could have said more about the situation. They are not strongly against it and it seems like everything is ok once Jamaica is being marketed in a sense.
— Jamie Muir
Well, I don't approve of it. Its disrespectful to be burning national symbol of the Jamaican people. We don't need that kind of publicity. However, I like the approach of AJ Nicholson in highlighting that the company's intentions were not to disrespect the flag. They have pulled the ad and issued an apology so no additional action is necessary.
— Jason McPherson
Well, it has definitely caused discomfort among the Jamaican population and as such, the need was felt for the government to push for the ad to be removed and a letter of apology sent, so I agree with the government's response. Growing up as a child I was told to respect and honour the flag of Jamaica and I strongly believe that everyone should honour it irrespective of the fact that you may or may not be Jamaican.
— Trudy-Ann Mullings
Despite their effort on making the video somewhat funny, it was totally disrespectful to Jamaican citizens. No flag should be treated in any such manner.
— Jordan Beckford