This cartoon was accepted and then rejected by one of my print employers several years ago. The reason given was because it used a drawing of a child as part of the way to make a point. I thought about it again yesterday when a row about the Conservatives new advertising campaign on debt broke out. The drawing referenced, in turn, a controversial advertising campaign by the charity Barnardo’s which you can see at the second of those links. I love one of the quotes in the BBC report, which I am reproducing below;
The Advertising Standards Authority said the images, including one of a baby with a cockroach in its mouth, caused “widespread offence”.
Quite right – it was meant to. The argument, or the offence is the old one about what you are allowed to say, or show in pursuit of an objective.
I think the Conservative advertising campaign is justifiable, it is certainly not as potentially visually offensive as the Barnardo’s one was. I am sure Derek Draper’s new independent Labour web site will be just gagging to respond with some brutal imagery of their own. There’s an interview with Derek Draper and Tim Montgomerie on Channel 4 News here.