The Balenciaga store in Manchester, England, has seen protests over its advert campaign where the fashion brand was accused of sexualising children.
Valiant News reported in November that Balenciaga created a new campaign featuring images of children holding stuffed animals in bondage and “virtual child pornography” documents.
In one photo, a young red-headed girl can be observed standing on a bed while holding a teddy bear donning fishnets and leather straps on its wrists and ankles. In a separate photo, another little girl can be seen holding a purple stuffed animal wearing BDSM-style leather straps.
A copy of a Supreme Court case which that ruled child pornography isn’t protected free speech, page 11 from Williams v. Supreme Court (2008), was also included in Balenciaga’s ad campaign. In a separate photo, a handbag can be seen on a table with a mix of various papers. Fragments of text from the child porn Supreme Court ruling can be observed towards the bottom of the bag.
On Saturday, the National Distributist Party, a socially traditionalist and economically centrist party, protested outside the Balenciaga store contained within the Selfridges in the centre of Manchester, in the North West of England.
Members of the party handed out leaflets to the general public, and talked to them about the scandal. Party leader Tyler White said that the activists had received a “good reception,” from the general public. “They’ve seen us today and they’ve realised that there is a foundation in Britain for talk like that, and we’re not going to just roll over and let people corrode our morals,” he said.
Many people who were informed about Balenciaga’s advertising campaigns were incensed by the fashion company’s actions. One member of the public even went into the store to distribute leaflets himself, which staff members aggressively removed. Another man described Balenciaga as a “bunch of f**king nonces.”
“Companies like Balenciaga may appear to be friendly, bright and colourful, and have no bad intentions, but when you look into it, we can see the open promotion of paedophilia,” said a party spokesman in a video statement posted to Instagram:
“This is being championed within the mainstream culture. As a society, it is our obligation to protect our children and public moral values. We need to ask ourselves the question, where as a society do we want to go? Do we want to have any standards? Do we have an obligation to the younger generation, to their future, and to generations to come?… If we had the ability to, we would make people aware on a much larger scale… You can see companies which promote sexual immorality and violence. All of these things which are against the decency of human nature.”
The protest against Balenciaga by the NDP is the latest in a number that occured worldwide since the revelations broke. Bryson Gray, the conservative and Christian rapper, protested the fashion brand by burning a pair of Balenciaga shoes in a music video.
This news and commentary by Jack Hadfield originally appeared on Valiant News.