Ah controversy. So many people court you but when is the wedding? I have always found the ideas of religions advertising to be a bit odd*, though even I cannot help but smuggle a small smile when I think of cheap posters saying Carpenter Seeks Joiners (flocking Eastern Europeans not wanted – pah). Nevertheless the teacup tempest caused by this ultrasound poster campaign for Christmas** does seem to flap around the resemblance this poster has to those used by anti-abortion campaigns of recent years (of course no-one really minds pro-lifers using Christianity for their own ends but I digress). This poster however is so staggeringly bonkers that it cannot help raise a large number of secondary thoughts, a number of which are pro-choice. I mean Mary didn’t really have a choice about harbouring Jesus in her womb, and honour that I daresay it was, it probably put Joseph’s back up a bit and she didn’t even have the benefit of a quickie with a swan that she might have got from a different pantheon.

Anyway it made me think:
a) That halo must be a bit uncomfortable. Would it get stuck in a normal birth, or make way for the head? Would it get stuck like some dutch cap if the nipper was breach?

b) If you knew you were giving birth to the second coming of Jesus, wouldn’t you be a bit worried? Octomum got near blanket press, in this case you’ll be looking at constant media attention. Even if you tried to keep it quiet, the shepherds and kings travelling afar (not to mention the star parked above your manger for a week) would make it hard to keep quiet.

c) Again I am sure the infant Jesus was a wonderfully natured child, he didn’t even mind the annoying kid with the drum or the shitting Catalunian in the corner of the stable. But Joseph and Mary were on the run for a crime they did not commit for quite some time. I daresay solving problems in every town they stumbled into. So unless you fancy living like the A-Team for a few years, again abortion may cross your mind.

d) Laura Bush thinks abortion is OK for unplanned pregnancies, and I reckon being knocked up by the deity is the ultimate in unplanned pregnancies. I mean really, has anyone got it on their to do list?

e) I’ve been shown a large number of ultrasounds by wonderful pregnant friends in my time, and there is a massive leap of faith going on when they trace the body, legs and head. Nine times out of ten it could just be a spicy beanburger that went down too quickly, being jiggled by the rightly upset belly. In this case the halo could easily be an onion ring that slipped down transversely or a particularly invasive and this pointless colon piercing.

f) It actually says to me that even Simon Templar was a foetus once.

So, in conclusion, don’t sweat it guys. And as nuts as you will be about the provenance of this ad, it won’t be anywhere near as odd as this Saudi story: Saudi Clerics*** Advocate Breast Feeding.

*Though not as odd as counter religious advertising. Trying to sell the non-existence of something seems like a great scam for the cash strapped ad agencies.

**Yes, yes, yes: it comes earlier every year, the decorations are in the shops in August and the first Argois advert is in September and if you wanted to watch GRUMPY OLD MEN / WOMEN / PETS then I am sure BBC2 will oblige and repeat ad infinitum. Actually I knew Christmas was coming too early last year when they showed the Grumpy Guide to Christmas in May.

***Am I the only person who when Islamic “Clerics” are referenced to wonder if they mind not using edged weapons and if they get to turn undead very often.