Posted by: cjobrien | 9 February 2008

Do Propoganda Movie Posters Belong in the Workplace?

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Here’s a dilemma: what do you do when posters of the upcoming anti-science propaganda movie, Expelled (with Ben Stein) start showing up in the workplace? I noticed one for the first time on an office door down the hall and have been contemplating the most appropriate way to respond. It’s really not a poster per se, but a print out from one of the websites promoting the movie, however, it is the only item on the door and therefore conspicuously located. My immediate thought is to post the same sized version of this image (which I got from Big Dumb Chimp). But some other ideas have come to mind….

As a temporary response, I downloaded and printed off the flyer for Darwin Day made available from the celebration website – it is now posted prominently on my own office door. However, I think something a bit more directed at the movie itself would be more appropriate. I was thinking the image above but directly underneath posting some snippets from reviews of the film. Any other suggestions?

One option that WILL NOT be entertained is complaining to the supervisor with a request that the poster be taken down. I absolutely despise that course of action for political speech and will not be a party to any efforts to limit such speech within the confines of a personal office. All of us have various political and religious sayings, images, figurines, whatever in our offices to one extent or another and these have been easily tolerated. We lose something if we are forced to cleanse personal office space into impersonal sterility. If that happens, I will be standing side-by-side with the person in defense of keeping the Expelled poster on the office door.

I much prefer to compete with other messages being floated, particularly those that are as patently anti-science as the Stein film. I also suspect that the film will be playing here in Lassen County and I half expect the local paper mark its preview in some way. I will, of course, be responding to anything that publicly appears in Susanville here at Northstate Science.

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