Decline of the West: Britain Surrenders to Religious Extremists

Oh my gosh, maybe Martin Amis, Mark Steyn and Mitt Romney are right after all! Maybe the religious extremists have taken over Britain and, under the cloak of "political correctness," are now imposing their bigoted, obscurantist, misogynist worldview on the rest of society.

A report in the Guardian brings the disturbing news that Britain's Advertising Standards Authority has banned a TV commercial for hair products because it was "likely to cause serious offence" to the fanatical adherents of a primitive faith actively practiced by less than 7 percent of the UK population. For this rabid minority, the ads were considered too lascivious and blasphemous because they dared to celebrate the fre
edom of women to express their beauty and sexuality as they see fit. It's obvious that in today's emasculated, "multicultural" Britain, there is no one strong enough to stand up to the encroachments of religious fascists. But let the Guardian tell the sorry tale:

A TV ad campaign featuring lingerie-clad women praying for beautiful hair has been banned by the advertising watchdog because it might offend Christians. The series of three TV ads…for beauty firm ghd, had an overall religious theme using the strapline "Ghd. A new religion for hair".

Ghd's ads showed scantily-clad women in various positions, such as lying on a bed, while looking upwards with their hands clasped as if in prayer. Some had objects that looked like votive candles and rosary beads. Viewers could hear the thoughts of each of the women, in various languages including English, which centred on having great hair….[one woman] was saying to herself "May my flirty flicks puncture the heart of every man I see". At the end of each ad an endline ran: "Thy will be done".

The ASA censored the ads after receiving a whopping 23 complaints, "including one from the Archdeacon of Liverpool," claming that they were "offensive to the Christian faith." The Guardian continues:

The complaints particularly highlighted the use of the phrase from the Lord's Prayer and the depiction of the letter "t" as a cross in "thy". The ASA said that while previous ghd campaigns did not "mock" faith or belief, the new ads went further with the women appearing to be praying while being erotic.

Praying while being erotic! Heaven forfend! Let's hope nobody ever makes a perfume commercial based on the Song of Songs, or the visions of St. Teresa. In any case, the hair company called the censorship "perplexing," says the Guardian:

"We have a loyal following of women and the ads were, in fact, produced by an all-female creative team," [said ghd managing director Martin Penny]. "It has nothing to do with religion really, if it was more people would have complained...It is a fashion ad which is tasteful and sensitive. The ASA seem to be frightened of their own shadows."

No, you're wrong there, Martin. It's not their shadows that your craven censors are afraid of – it's those breeding hordes of freedom-hating religious brownshirts out there that have got them scared to death.

Amis! Thou shouldst be ranting at this hour: England hath need of thee!

Note: For details on regular church attendance in the UK – now at 6.3 percent of the population and still continuing a 50-year decline, despite an influx of church-going immigrants -- see the report by the religious think tank Christian Research, and this story from the BBC.