I've had to reject some in the past - just completely non-genre, spammy-looking, not the kind of ad I want on my site, and usually, I sort of wonder if I should've, afterward. Maybe I shouldn't be so strict about the genre, or let PW worry about legitimacy of the actual sites.
It was a book called Repuglicans - basically monster-ized portraits of prominent Republican part members.
The description at Amazon:
It's completely unfair and not balanced whatsoever! Pete Von Sholly, creator of CAPITOL HELL, and political commentator Steve Tatham bring you cutting edge political satire just in time for the mid-term elections. So, if you're a card-carrying Republican, stop reading now. If not, you must get this book. Von Sholly puts UGLI into the Republican party with his all-new versions of top party leaders and apparatchiks. See Sarah Palin rendered as a vampire. McCain as a three-eyed freak. Glenn Beck as a half-brained zombie. Also including Lou Dobbs, Michele Bachmann, John Boehner and many, many others. Sholly's imagery coupled with wry commentary by Steve Tatham is a perfect gift for the Republican sitting in the cubicle next to you!
I'm not Republican, by any stretch. I get embarrassed for the state when Sarah Palin is mentioned in the news (I had SUCH high hopes for her, but ugh). I'm not liberal, either, but that's not really the point.
The point is that a very gifted artist spent enough time to produce an entire book of hateful artwork. I mean... I get political humor and satire and such, I can even understand horror, though it's not to my taste. But this feels cheap, ugly and just mean. Is there really an audience for this? Would you really buy it FOR the Republican who works in the next cubical? What would that say to them about how you feel about their point of view?
I have a good mix of liberal and conservative on my friendslist, and I find it enlightening to read the things they're passionate about.
But the thing that really gets under my skin - and has caused one of the few unfriendings I've done on Livejournal - is the villianization* of the other side.
It's not really us versus them. It never has been. It's bad ideas believed passionately by flawed people that we don't have to like. But stripping them of their humanity so its easier to hate them? That's damaging - and not to them, but to ourselves. When we can stop seeing the sympathetic side in someone else, we lose our ability to see it in ourselves.
I would rather have my advertising boxes sit empty than promote things like that.
*No, spell-check, not vulcanization. That's a Star Trek rant...