Last week, the trade magazine Ad Age reported on a new advertising campaign from sportswear company Dhvani:
Athletic wear company Dhvani’s new out-of-home campaign features a more graphic depiction of the president, with a series of images that depict Trump tied up, on the toilet or shushed by women fed up with the actions and the rhetoric of this White House.
In an image titled “Lady Liberty,” running on a Times Square billboard, middle school teacher and Marine Corps veteran Michal Mesa binds a convincing Trump impersonator, her bare foot planted firmly on his face, in a vignette inspired by the superhero Wonder Woman and her Lasso of Truth.
Another model for the campaign is Chloe Mason, chief communications officer at Dhvani, who appears in warrior and tree yoga poses, silencing a bound Trump with one finger. In another photo, the president is seated on a gold toilet, pants around his ankles, as his smartphone is grabbed out of his hands.
Ad Age thought this campaign was provocative enough to include it in the pages of their digital magazine, but – despite the fact that these ads essentially depict violence against the sitting President of the United States – they have attracted very little press from the mainstream political media. We haven’t read a thing about them in The New York Times. We haven’t noticed any condemning thinkpieces from the Washington Post, lamenting the prospect that these ads could incite violence against Donald Trump or his supporters. Not one whisper.
Why are we not surprised?
“Since you had time to thoroughly cover a stupid and tasteless meme seen by 8 people with incredible outrage, I figured you should dedicate the same time and outrage to this billboard in Times Square you hypocrites,” suggested Donald Trump Jr. in a tweet calling on the media to do their jobs.
But of course, as the president’s son noted in another tweet, the “outrage only flows one way.”
Yes, the reaction to the meme video played at Trump’s Doral hotel was absurd even by the left’s current standards. But when you compare it to the utter silence on these ads or Barbra Streisand’s cartoon tweet of Nancy Pelosi’s heel impaling Trump, well, then you understand what’s really going on here. They weren’t outraged at all. They don’t give a tinker’s damn about depictions of political violence. All they care about is finding new and inventive ways to tell their readers how horrible Trump and his supporters are. If a story doesn’t match that agenda, they’re not interested.