Thursday, 26 March 2009

Common sense on pregnancy advice

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It never really occurred to me, until I read this story this morning, that you can't really advertise condoms on British TV. But now I know the rules – no condom ads before the nine o'clock watershed, except for on Channel 4, where they can show them from seven (but Hollyoaks is on at 6.30, so to me this means they're missing a key demographic).

However, the encouraging news today is that regulators look set to relax these rules – condom adverts will be able to be shown on all channels before the watershed, and pregnancy advisory services, including those who can help with abortion, will also be free to advertise on TV.

So teenagers, who are most in need of this kind of advice, will be more likely to see it advertised on TV. Common sense, don't you think?

Simon Blake of sexual health service Brook agrees:

"Young people tell us TV is an important route through which they get a huge amount of messages about sex. So clear, honest, factual advertising about services which provide honest messages is clearly going to be part of shifting the balance away from this over-sexualised media."

But of course there's always an opposite view. Usually a more emotive, less helpful one. Enter John Smeaton, national director of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, who informs us that the changes would "further commercialise the killing of unborn children".

The new rules haven't been decided on yet – these suggestions are to form part of a public consultation which will end on 19 June, which could lead to changes to advertising codes in a variety of areas.

Of course, one imagines we'll be hearing plenty from the Christian right (in so far as it exists in this country) in the meantime. Incidentally, I was only saying the other day that Stephen Green of Christian Voice has been very quiet of late (his last "press release" was dated 11 February). Could this be the story that sees him re-enter the fray?

Lastly, speaking of condoms, there was an amusing take on the matter on Charlie Brooker's new show Newswipe last night (which I urge you to watch on BBC iPlayer) - "in case you're wondering, the Catholic method is to remove the condom and then bury the head of your penis in the sand."

Spot on.


Velicia said...

Right, because condom use automatically equals getting an abortion... don't these nuts realize that improved contraceptive use would actually lead to a decrease of abortions?

Chris Geiser said...

Velicia said, "Right, because condom use automatically equals getting an abortion... don't these nuts realize that improved contraceptive use would actually lead to a decrease of abortions?"

Abortions aren't even the right thing in the first place so it should not be in any context of where it says it is even a little bit OK.
Abstinence until marriage is what God wants, fornication, and no reverent fear of God is the cause of unwanted births. Poor contraceptives are not the cause of unwanted babies.
Lying, stealing, hatred, murder, adultery and all thoughts, words and deeds that go against God's Ten Commandments is sin. God will not let blasphemers into heaven nor idolaters, nor people who hate each other.
The whole abortion/contraceptive situation is from this society's rebellion toward God and it wouldn't even exist other wise.