American automobile manufacturer Jeep debuted a new advertisement on Super Bowl Sunday that featured left-wing rock legend Bruce Springsteen. But after the Trump-hating singer found himself the center of controversy this week, the Chrysler-owned brand is covering up all traces of their ties to him.
Fox News reported Wednesday that the ad was pulled from social media and taken off YouTube after news broke that Springsteen had been taken into custody last November on charges of driving under the influence of alcohol.
The musician’s arrest took place in New Jersey’s Gateway National Recreation Area, according to a statement quoted in a separate report from Fox, and it reportedly resulted in citations for “DWI, reckless driving, and consuming alcohol in a closed area.”
“A hard place to get to”
According to Fox, Jeep declined the network’s request for comment. Through a spokesperson, the company told Pitchfork that “[i]t would be inappropriate for us to comment on the details of a matter we have only read about and we cannot substantiate.”
“But it’s also right that we pause our Big Game commercial until the actual facts can be established,” the spokesperson added. “Its message of community and unity is as relevant as ever. As is the message that drinking and driving can never be condoned.”
The ad in question featured images of Springsteen driving a Jeep to the geographical center of the lower 48 states, which is located in Lebanon, Kansas.
“The middle has been a hard place to get to lately, between red and blue, between servant and citizen, between our freedom and our fear,” Springsteen says in a voiceover, according to Fox.
“As for freedom, it’s not the property of just the fortunate few, it belongs to us all, whoever you are, wherever you’re from,” he adds.
Finding common ground?
Toward the end of the ad, Springsteen can be seen walking into a chapel as he says, “We just have to remember that the very soil we stand on is common ground, so we can get there.”
Some observers have taken issue with the idea of featuring Springsteen in a commercial centering around national unity, however, given his status as a partisan figure with proud ties to Democrats.
One such critic is conservative commentator Ben Shapiro, who remarked sarcastically on an episode of his podcast: “When I think of moderate, middle-of-the-road people, I think of Bruce Springsteen, a life-long Democratic voter who performs at the DNC [Democratic National Convention].”