So God Made A Farmer: Paul Harvey Speech Used In Super Bowl Dodge Ram Trucks Ad, Commercial Is Best Of 2013 Game on CBS?

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Feb 04, 2013 09:23 AM EST
U.S. President George W. Bush awards his Presidential Medal of Freedom to long-term radio commentator Paul Harvey
U.S. President George W. Bush (R) awards his Presidential Medal of Freedom to long-term radio commentator Paul Harvey as fellow awardees, former Chairman of the Federal Reserve Alan Greenspan (L) and actor Andy Griffith (2nd L) look on at a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington November 9, 2005. Bush presented the highest civil award recognizing exceptional meritorious service to 14 honorees from the sport, entertainment and political world at the ceremony. (Photo : Reuters) "

The Super Bowl featured numerous commercials that were talked about on social media, including the "So God Made A Farmer" ad by Dodge Ram that used Paul Harvey's 1978 speech as a backdrop.

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The commercial aired late in the game and featured numerous still pictures of farmers with audio and text of the speech, which Harvey originally gave at a 1978 Future Farmers of America convention. The pictures in the ad were taken by taken by ten photographers, including William Albert Allard and Kurt Markus.

 

The radio host died in 2009, but is receiving some attention on the intern after the advertisement. Harvey's show was one of the most popular radio programs during the 1050s through the 1990s and he also was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States' most prestigious civilian award, by President George W. Bush.

The title of the ad was simply, "Farmer" and featured his speech:

"And on the eighth 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 field, milk cows again, eat supper, then go to town and stay past midnight at a meeting of the school board." So God made a farmer . . .

It had to be somebody who'd plow deep and straight and not cut corners. Somebody to seed, weed, feed, breed, and brake, and disk, and plow, and plant, and tie the fleece and strain the milk. 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 that he wants to spend his life doing what dad does. "So God made a farmer."

The commercial closes with a nod "to the farmer in all of us."

According to Michael Wayland of Mlive.com, "Ram commissioned ten noted photographers including National Geographic icon William Albert Allard and renowned documentary photographer Kurt Markus to document American farm life, yielding a beautiful and comprehensive catalog of farming images."

Ken Tucker at EW.com put the ad in context with Harvey:

"My parents used to listen to his mixture of news and anecdote every day, and when I was a child I became transfixed by Harvey's rumbling-deep voice and strikingly unique phrasing. He'd pause in the middle of sentences for dramatic effect. He'd rush to the end of a story, pause for so long you thought the radio had gone dead, and then you'd suddenly hear him bark in mock-triumph, "Page two!"... his term for changing the subject, and off he was, onto another story, or to a commercial whose copy he read himself and promoted personally. Harvey belonged to the pre-TV generation, but lasted well into the Internet age. In recent years, I would hear him only on car trips, around noon wherever I was, on the AM radio dial. He had the gift of making it seem as though he was talking only to you. "Hello, Americans!" he'd greet you merrily: Patriotism never sounded so much fun."

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