When one thinks of efforts to bridge the gap between people of different faiths and help our nation heal during times of widening divisions, Amazon probably isn't the first organization to come to mind.
Nevertheless, the online retail giant has debuted a new holiday commercial that seems to be a direct response to the growing problem of Islamophobia in the Western World.
Set in England, the ad features an Episcopal priest and a Muslim cleric enjoying tea and griping about shared ailments.
Eventually they part company and use Amazon's Prime service to send one another presents.
Each of them gets a knee brace in the mail (presumably with free shipping) and reflects fondly on their friendship as he slips on.
The message is clear:
Whether you're a Christian, Muslim, Jew, Hindu, Buddhist or atheist – getting old sucks.
As the priest and the cleric both kneel (now with less pain), it's clear that the ad intends to remind us that we're all more alike than we are different.
Not to get all political in our description of a warm-and-fuzzy Amazon ad, but it's an important message during a time when the media has been forced to frequently use the phrase "Muslin ban" in its coverage of the guy who will soon be president.
Interestingly, some advertising industry experts believe this to be the first commercial featuring a Muslim cleric ever to be broadcast on mainstream American television.
"I can’t think of one. There are plenty of religious figures in televisions, especially sitcoms and police procedurals. But no ads with imams,” says Tobe Berkovitz, advertiser professor at Boston University.
Toss out that giblet if the conversation gets too political during tomorrow's feast.
The Hollywood Gossip