A Rochdale company has withdrawn a punchbag with an image of a woman on it from sale after being slammed by domestic violence campaigners.An image? You mean, like a target, or something?
Sporteq Design Ltd, of Maldon Street, Deeplish, has withdrawn the product, which encouraged keep fit fans and boxers to pummel the silhouette of a female pole dancer, after coming under fire from women’s groups.Oh…
Kerry Reddy, Rochdale’s domestic violence inter-agency co-ordinator…Their what..?!?
…said: "I thought the image of a naked woman being used to sell merchandise was history – evidently not.Is anyone other than the professionally-offended complaining? We aren’t told.
"I think this is a really confused marketing ploy, with the end results being at least confusing, and at worse sick and offensive. "
"We have in the past used the image of a punch bag within the family home to depict the strong message that their home is the least safe place to be."So it’s OK for you to do it, but woe betide anyone else?
"This image could be seen to be encouraging violence against women, which in itself either intentionally or unintentionally is colluding with the perpetrators of abuse.Good god, you’re not kidding! I’m reminded of the 70s too, and not in a good way…
"For those of us who work day in, day out, with women who have been abused, this merchandise shows a real lack of understanding of the reality and danger this has on the lives of women and children within this borough.
"This punchbag takes me back to the 70s and is on a par with the inappropriate racist, sexist, homophobic and mother-in-law jokes."
Ben Jamal, of the Domestic Violence Intervention Project…GAH!!
… said: "Men’s violence to women is often underpinned by a belief that they are entitled to be violent.
"A product like this carries with it a message that it is OK for a woman to be the subject of violence.
"Everybody in society has a responsibility to challenge these attitudes."It’s a picture on a punchbag, you cretin! Does someone need to beat some sense into you?
And encouraging them by giving in to their mad claims is just asking for trouble:
Sporteq Design owner Tony Hussain, said he was shocked by the reaction and was happy to withdraw the bag from sale after realising it had caused offence.
He added: "We originally made them to order for a sports bar. I didn’t realise they had caused a problem. It’s an image of a girl dancing around a pole. It’s not like she’s a target or anything.And now you’re a hostage to fortune for the next time someone decides something you do is offensive.
"It’s just a gimmick, something for the bachelors out there. We certainly don’t want to promote domestic violence. I never really thought about it, but if it causes problems or offence, then I’m happy to withdraw it from sale."