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The ad features Nick Offerman, making fun of being gluten-free and, according to the petition, implies that gluten-free people who suffer from Celiac disease are “soft,” “weak” and “part of America’s problem.”
“They pulled the GoDaddy spot for puppies. We’re talking about human beings here,” he said. Though, he said he understands the cost and production behind a Super Bowl spot and doesn’t expect it will be pulled.
The offending line in question comes from Offerman early on: “When our idea of danger is eating gluten, there’s trouble afoot. Yes, we the people have gotten soft.”
The petition was posted late Wednesday and has amassed nearly 15,000 signatures.
UPDATE: According to a spokesman for NBC Sports, the line in question will not appear in the 60-second version of the spot that will run during the Super Bowl. The line is only featured in the online version of the spot.
“The intent of our creative was to highlight NASCAR’s return to NBC Sports in 2015 and celebrate the sport’s fun and passionate following,” said an NBC Sports spokesman. “The response has been overwhelmingly positive, but we understand that it is hard to please everyone and apologize to anyone who took offense.”
This story first appeared on Adweek.com.
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