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Controversial Easter ad shows Jesus smoking a joint, holding a sandwich

Jesus ad
Jesus ad
KOMO screen grab

It’s hard to pick out the single most offensive thing about an ad run by a Seattle restaurant on Easter Sunday to promote its so-called “Burger of the Gods.” Is it the speech bubble that has the Jesus saying, “When I get back, all I want is the burger of the gods”? Or is the fact that the Son of God is holding a lit blunt, which is presumably intended to answer the question “What would Jesus smoke?”

According to Seattle station KOMO, the explanation for the joint offered up John Schmidt, owner of Lunchbox Laboratory, is that Easter Sunday this year fell on April 20, or 4/20. In pop culture, “420” is a term for smoking marijuana. As for the burger Jesus is gazing at adoringly in the cartoonlike ad? Says Schmidt in the video report here:

This is not about Jesus; it's about the burger of the gods. It’s an actual burger that we have.

If it’s not about Jesus, why feature His likeness? Here’s Schmidt’s response:

I'm not your moral guide in life, I'm selling burgers. It's not an anti-Christian message. It’s a very peaceful message: Jesus enjoying a sandwich and a blunt.

I'm a Christian, I'm not a Muslim. And this is an ad promoting our Burger of the Gods, not a burger of the prophets.

If Jesus was holding a goblet of wine you wouldn't be interviewing me right now, but you put a joint in his hand — a very peaceful drug — its blasphemy.

Here’s a recommendation for Schmidt’s next advertising campaign. Perhaps he should go ahead and create an ad for a “Burger of the Prophets” featuring an image of Muhammad. That should assure him a large turnout, if not for the halal meat in his burger.

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