Bought to you by our gloriously humanoid leader, David "Call me Dave" Cameron has created a virtual latrine for angry parents to flush their collective angry turds into the ether. If you're feeling impotent (with rage, obviously), you can log on to ParentPort and find out exactly who you need to shout at with righteous fury. Of course, this will be mainly used by pissy, pedantic parents, pointing and screaming at anything which might suggest sex to or near kids.
In order to take advantage of this wonderful website, I decided I'd take up the role of a concerned father. I assume the identity of Alan Paige, a worried single dad and all round nice guy who volunteers at a children's hospital. I found a range of topics to complain about, and then did just that.
First up, I wanted to complain about the way in which magazines are displayed on shelves. ParentPort directed me to the Press Distribution Forum (PDF):
I am writing to complain about an incident at my local Spar which occurred last week. On walking past the magazine rack, I was initially pleased to see that the usual disgusting skin rags were covered by a discreet piece of black plastic that would certainly stop children from peering underneath. However, I was then horrified to discover that Take A Break (a publication that is usually such a bastion of moralistic, journalistic integrity) included a picture of a hideous creature called a "Katona" wearing a bikini and little else!
In shock, I grabbed my son and tried to cover his eyes. In doing so, I managed to push his eyeball back into his socket and we had to rush him to A&E as a result. My poor Bradton was literally blinded by this disgusting, sick filth. Please sort this out immediately and ban Take A Break, or pay for a bionic eye for my son.They respond:
Dear Mr Paige
Thank you for your recent email of 11th October 2011.
The Press Distribution Forum (PDF) are engaged with and supporting the Bailey Review and regularly pass on the retailers guidelines on display of magazines.
We will also pass on to the Professional Publishers Association (PPA) your comments, so that they may make the relevant publishers aware of your comments.
Please pass our best wishes to Bradton for a speedy full recovery.
Next up, I emailed the British Board of Film Certification about two disgraceful films:
Recently, I took my recently disabled son, Bradton, to the cinema to see, what sounded like a delightful romp, Hobo With A Shotgun.
I was anticipating a whimsical adventure in which the main character, Hobo, tries to sit on the front passenger seat of his father's station wagon. As you rated the film yourselves, I believe you know what happened next. The resulting bloodbath as a homeless vigilante executes law enforcement officers was enough to make me drop my popcorn bag over Bradton's head in shock. As he couldn't fight his way free, he almost suffocated in a bag of buttery goodness.
Even though this film is rated 18, my son is 19, and I don't think this was appropriate for him. Due to it's frightening content, he was left breathless and in an ambulance, fighting for his life. Please remove this film from distribution, and sack everyone involved.
Also, I saw a trailer for a film called "Mr Poppers Penguins". I can't believe you would promote a film in which Jim Carey feeds narcotics to innocent arctic birds. Please can you ban this too?
The Film Board couldn't have told me to fuck off any nicer:
Thank you for your email. I am sorry to hear about your recent experience.
It was felt that the adults-only certificate of '18' combined with our Consumer Advice for HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN - stating that it contained "strong bloody violence and gore" - would offer most potential viewers a clear indication of the content of the film. We also publish extended classification information (ECI) for every film we classify. ECI provides a fuller account of a film and the issues which contributed to its classification. ECI is published on our main site. We have also launched BBFC Apps this year which allows parents to access this information on their iPhones and Android devices. They are free to download at http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/bbfc/id417274466?mt=8&ls=1 or https://market.android.com/details?id=co.uk.bbfc.android) These free customer information services allow viewers, especially parents, to make informed viewing choices.
While we recognise that some people may find HOBO WITH A SHOTGUN offensive and trivialising, it was judged that its clearly unrealistic and over-the-top violence and unconvincing effects, coupled with its blackly comic and knowing tone, would be self-evident to most audiences for this type of film and mitigated against its impact and strength. There were no legal grounds to refuse to certificate this film.
With regard to your comments about the trailer for MR POPPER'S PENGUINS, we are confident that the penguins were not subject to any mistreatment or cruelty allowing the trailer to be screened in UK cinemas.
Thank you for taking the time and trouble to express your views to us. I hope you son is now recovered and can be encouraged to visit the cinema again soon.
J L Green
Chief Assistant (Policy)
Lastly, I had a complaint to make, but couldn't find an appropriate outlet. Even ParentPort couldn't provide an appropriate home for my complaint. In the end, I decided to take my question to the man in charge, and email number 10 with my grievance (if you're interested, this can be done here). By the way, see if you can spot the pun:
I am writing to alert you to the growing problem in the field of sexualised vegetables. Have you ever noticed how phallic carrots and cucumbers are? Or that cabbages look like breasts? Mother Nature obviously wasn't into the business of censorship, so I think it's time we gave her a helping hand.
I propose that we begin the process of cubing everything organic. Cut aubergines in tiny squares, and suddenly they stop fanning the flames of sexual ardour in our youngsters. It's hard enough to get kids to eat asparagus without the reminder that it looks like a sexual organ. Cubing everything resolves this problem instantly. This can also be applied to meat products, not for reasons of censorship, but to make things easier to swallow.
Please let me know what you think of my proposals. I would like to take at least 10% of sales from the food industry, and acknowledgement on all packaging.
Unfortunately, the Government seem to too busy trying to destroy the economy than respond to my every whim and desire. Any future responses will be posted in a future update, as is agreeable with future events.