What is a woman, really, if not a vessel for making babies? According to a controversial new ad campaign in Italy, it seems the answer is “a failure to her country.”
In an attempt to combat falling birthrates, health minister Beatrice Lorenzin announced earlier this summer that Italy would hold its first ever Fertility Day on September 22nd. Through a series of state-sponsored events in major Italian cities, the “holiday” would focus on encouraging family-planning by helping those struggling to conceive, celebrating the beauty of parenthood, and discussing why a lower birthrate might be dangerous for Italy’s future.
Along with the announcement, the Ministry of Health launched a website, a computer game, and a series of promotional images in order to help encourage participation — but rather than get people excited, they instead sparked major backlash and global outrage.
The #FertilityDay images were quick to go viral for touting offensive messages like “Beauty has no age. But fertility does.” and “Young parents. The best way to be creative.” Many immediately pointed out that the tone of the ads is extremely pressuring, and the message ridiculously sexist.
Read More: cosmopolitan