This story found its way into my eyes today; the DMC agency that deals with cinema advertising has refused to show an advert for a website promoting Christian Prayer as they have a policy of “not accepting political or religious advertising content” in its cinemas. The Church of England, who were hoping to get it screened to the maximum number of people before the new Star Wars movie this Christmas are said to be “bewildered” with the decision. But why should they be?
Firstly, if that’s the policy of the DMC then that’s the policy, there’s nothing more to say. They won’t show political or religious adverts and that’s that. Secondly, nobody wants to go to the cinema only to be preached at by religions or political parties, do they? We get enough of that from major corporations – half an hour of ads for Coke, Apple, Microsoft and bloody Eggs before the film pisses us all of enough as it is.
But thirdly, and here’s the clincher, can you imagine the reaction of the mainstream media, of Facebookers and Twitterers and columnists in national newspapers if an advert was aired before Hunger Games 4 that said “Go To The Mosque! Speak To Allah!”?! Jesus, there’s be uproar! You would be able to hear Richard Littlejohn sharpening his special ANGRY pencil from the fucking Moon!
Or put it like this: Imagine sitting down to watch a film in the Cinema when, just before the trailers roll, David Cameron’s face pops up and says “Vote for me! I’ve done loads of good stuff!”… Would be accept that? Would we say “ah well, that’s that then” or would we wonder why one party was being given more of a platform than others. Interchange parties and leaders as needed in that above example, you know what I mean, you see my point.
The bottom line is this: Nobody’s “Banned” the Lord’s Prayer. It’s just been said that maybe it wouldn’t be appropriate to advertise Christianity before a movie, any more than it would be appropriate to advertise UKIP, Islam or the Liberal Democrats. To paraphrase Twitter user Joanne Harris, It’s like saying that, because they don’t show the Star Wars trailer before Mass every Sunday that the Church has “banned Star Wars” – it hasn’t, obviously. So what the hell is all the fuss about?