One of the Super Bowl 2013’s most popular commercials was also its most unconventional. Dodge Ram ran a lengthy spot featuring stirring heartland imagery and a speech given by Paul Harvey in the 1970s.
“So God Made a Farmer,” the Dodge Ram Super Bowl ad featuring Paul Harvey’s 1978 speech, did not require any women in bikinis or a clever and funny scene to get their message across. The beauty in “So God Made a Farmer” was its simplicity and the power of Harvey’s words.
Paul Harvey (1918-2009) was an immensely radio broadcaster who spun folksy American tales with a conservative slant. Harvey worked for ABC and was most famous for his “The Rest of the Story” program. Harvey would tell an interesting story, perhaps trivia or an important event, involving an individual. This story could have a moral and the big revelation at the end would be the name of someone famous and Harvey would conclude, “And now you know the rest of the story.”
Harvey’s 1978 “So God Made a Farmer” speech was given at a Future Farmers of America convention. That speech was also used by Farms.com to promote the message of farmers and what it takes to be one in America. Dodge partnered with Farms.com to produce the Super Bowl 2013 commercial that came in third in the USA Today Super Bowl Ad Meter. Dodge plans on donating up to $1 million to the Future Farmers of America. Dodge’s website has dedicated 2013 as the “year of the farmer” and features plenty of information regarding farmers in America.
The full text of Harvey’s “So God Made a Farmer” speech can be read below. The Dodge Ram Super Bowl 2013 can be viewed below, along with Harvey’s original reading of the speech.
And on the 8th day, God looked down on his planned paradise and said, "I need a caretaker." So God made a farmer.
"God said, "I need somebody willing to get up before dawn, milk cows, work all day in the fields, milk cows again, eat supper and then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board." So God made a farmer.
"I need somebody with arms strong enough to rustle a calf and yet gentle enough to deliver his own grandchild. Somebody to call hogs, tame cantankerous machinery, come home hungry, have to wait lunch until his wife's done feeding visiting ladies and tell the ladies to be sure and come back real soon -- and mean it." So God made a farmer.
"God said, "I need somebody willing to sit up all night with a newborn colt. And watch it die. Then dry his eyes and say, 'Maybe next year.' I need somebody who can shape an ax handle from a persimmon sprout, shoe a horse with a hunk of car tire, who can make harness out of haywire, feed sacks and shoe scraps. And who, planting time and harvest season, will finish his forty-hour week by Tuesday noon, then, pain'n from 'tractor back,' put in another seventy-two hours." So God made a farmer.
"God had to have somebody willing to ride the ruts at double speed to get the hay in ahead of the rain clouds and yet stop in mid-field and race to help when he sees the first smoke from a neighbor's place. So God made a farmer.
"God said, "I need somebody strong enough to clear trees and heave bails, yet gentle enough to tame lambs and wean pigs and tend the pink-combed pullets, who will stop his mower for an hour to splint the broken leg of a meadow lark. It had to be somebody who'd plow deep and straight and not cut corners. Somebody to seed, weed, feed, breed and rake and disc and plow and plant and tie the fleece and strain the milk and replenish the self-feeder and finish a hard week's work with a five-mile drive to church.
"Somebody who'd bale a family together with the soft strong bonds of sharing, who would laugh and then sigh, and then reply, with smiling eyes, when his son says he wants to spend his life 'doing what dad does.'" So God made a farmer."
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