I just heard this on Good Morning America and had to get it off my chest because it bothered me. There was a “Good Morning America” quick tip commercial that came on after George Stephanopoulos finished telling us about the Royal Wedding. It was presented as a Public Service Announcement-style commercial and features Ann Pleshette Murphy, PhD Parenting Contributor.
“Good morning, America. OK, so your teen just got their license and your panicked. And for good reason: Car accidents are the leading cause of death among teens. So think twice before you give your child a used car. Make sure you get it fully checked out by a mechanic, and make sure your teen never drives with a cell phone, or food or more than one friend in the car. And what can you do to … to make their driving safer? Go to ABCNEWS.com/GMA for the answers.
Then a booming voice comes on to let us know that “This GMA Quick Tip brought to you by Chrysler.”
And then this handy PSA is followed up by a commercial for the Chrysler Durango!
Why does this bother me so much? Because it’s totally using a fear tactic to market new cars. And it perpetuates this American buy-buy-buy culture that got us into this national financial mess. There is nothing wrong with buying your 16-year-old kid a used car. It doesn’t make you a bad parent. And you hopefully you will take ANY used car you buy to a mechanic for a safety once over.
Hopefully every parent who saw this pseudo PSA noticed what I did and won’t let GMA and Chrysler scare them into buying them a new car for their teen. It’s fine if you choose to because you want to and can afford to, but don’t feel bad if you pass on the family car to your kid and buy yourself a new car. This is really lame marketing and GMA should have figured out a better way to make a buck.