By Robert Cohen Executive Director Text Only

Superbowl follies

Idiotic Superbowl Milk Ad

Time out!
Unsportsman-like conduct.
Fifteen yard penalty!

Oakland Raiders quarterback Rich Gannon has a 6-year-old
daughter (Danielle) with Celiac Disease. People diagnosed
with Celiac avoid foods containing wheat (gluten) and dairy

For the first three years of her life, Danielle was a sickly
child. She would wake up screaming through the night and had
a series of earaches and poor digestion. After a severe bout
of vomiting after eating a bowl of cereal, the Gannon family
changed their diet, eliminating those foods which, to
Danielle, could be deadly. Mrs. Gannon:

"We eat a lot healthier now--lots of fresh fruits,
vegetables, meats. Baked potatoes and rice. We eat a lot
less processed stuff, and we don't eat fast food at all any
more. It's very important for Rich's job that he eat a
healthy diet, and this has been a real bonus. It's been good
for the entire family."

With that background, it is stunning to read that Rich
Gannon is selling out to the world of corporate advertising
by posing for a milk mustache ad. Sure, he'll receive
endorsements galore, especially if he wins today's Super
Bowl game. However, his daughter cannot digest milk, and his
family avoids it, so why the lie? In doing the ad, Gannon
betrays other children.

Gannon is not alone.

Brad Johnson, quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, has
suffered one injury after another to various bones in his
body this year, so what does the dairy industry do about

Make him one of their new heros by claiming that drinking
milk keeps bones strong.

On Friday, January 24th, the dairy industry invested a
barrel filled with dairy farmers' money in a one-time
milkstache ad in USA Today.

In October, early on in the season, Johnson fractured a left

In November, Johnson severely bruised bones in his right
(throwing) hand.

In December, Johnson suffered a painful lower back injury
and may have surgery in the off-season.

All this from drinking milk? What comedy! Here are the facts
on milk, and why people consuming the greatest amounts of
dairy products also have the highest rates of osteoporosis:

Tampa Bay Buccaneers' Brad Johnson and Oakland Raiders' Rich
Gannon posed together for the USA Today milk mustache ad.

The ad read, "We'll take all the protection we can get."

Today's USA Today (January 27, 2003) features the winning
quarterback. The same ad is due to run in the February 3,
2003 issue of Sports Illustrated.

Part of the ad text:

"Drinking enough milk each day helps provide active people
with all the calcium they need to help keep their bones
strong for working out or bone-crushing contact sports like

Uh, huh.

Break bones like Johnson. Get sick like Gannon's daughter.
Do you wonder if USA Today or Sports Illustrated has the
editorial integrity to honestly deal with the truth, or do
dollars get in their way?

Fifteen yard penalty, interference.

Robert Cohen, author of:   MILK A-Z
Executive Director (
Dairy Education Board

Do you know of a friend or family member with one or more of these milk-related problems? Do them a huge favor and forward the URL or this entire file to them.

Do you know of someone who should read these newsletters? If so, have them send an empty Email to and they will receive it (automatically)!