We're Only Human: The Color of Sin; November / December 2009; Scientific American Mind; by Wray Herbert; 2 Page(s)
When the Chrysler car company released a new model of its Dodge Coronet in 1967, the theme of its advertising campaign was the "White Hat Special." Some of the ads featured cartoon cowboys riding around "keepin' the prices low," whereas others had the ubiquitous "Dodge Girl" in her signature white Stetson, chirping: "Only the good guys could put together a deal like this."
These ads did not need any elaboration. Madison Avenue knew that potential buyers had all been raised on film and TV Westerns and were familiar with the symbolism of white hats. Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, the Lone Ranger—these cinematic heroes wore white hats, and bad guys wore black. It was all very simple.