Controversial propaganda strikes concern
With the recent email blast by the Loudoun County Republican Committee on Halloween featuring a zombie President Barack Obama with a bullet hole in his head, concerns have been raised over two other campaign images circulating among voters.
Loudoun County Supervisor Eugene Delgaudio (R-Sterling) recently sent out a Public Advocate fundraising letter, the organization of which Delgaudio is president. The picture features what appears to be a rainbow blood stained spatter in a doorway complete with a rainbow colored hand print on the door. The image, which is said to be doctored by Delgaudio to target the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender community, is believed to come from a blood stained door photo.
“Looks like paint to me,” Delgaudio said. “They’re saying it looks like blood but I don’t know what they’re talking about. We take out Google ads and I swear that looks like paint.”
Delgaudio said the image was originally rainbow colored and Equality Loudoun, a pro-gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender group doctored it to look like blood in another image. He said there is no image with blood that came from his organization.
“It’s a clear indication that they are creeping through the door. If they want to convey it that way that’s their business,” Delgaudio said. When asked who “they” are, he said, “the rainbow flag is them … the gay lobby.”
Delgaudio said he’s attacking conservatives that he feels have attacked him and his beliefs and said that the homosexuals are “flooding in.”
“This homosexual lobby has been Photoshopping me and everything I’m associated with for my entire time being in public office,” Delgaudio said. “So this is really rich that they would be accusing me of Photoshopping something that I didn’t Photoshop. They forgot that they Photoshopped this. They’re deceiving themselves that I said something without calling me.”
The President of Equality Loudoun, David Weintraub said the original picture of the blood stained door can be found on Google images and no lobby group had doctored the image from rainbow to blood.
“All you have to do is a Google image search with the key words ‘blood door’ and a whole page of them comes up. That’s just the reality. It’s interesting that he’d say that,” Weintraub said. “No one else is sending out images of bloody, gory crime scenes that are rainbow colored so I don’t see how we’re singling him out for doing that, because he’s the only one who’s done it.”
Weintraub says that he reports on what is sent out by Delgaudio and the impact he thinks it has on people.
“I tried to be concise and explain why I think a moral line should be drawn with this specific behavior when he’s calling other people basically not human by referring to them as “it,’” Weintraub said. “When you express something like that about a hypothetical person as the member of an identified group, it’s directed at the real members of that group, real people.”
Another candidate being criticized is Democrat Shawn Mitchell who is running in the state Senate 13th District against Republican Dick Black. NARAL a pro-choice group that has endorsed Mitchell sent out a controversial letter to voters that shows a woman in a compromising position.
The image on the front of the letter shows a woman in stirrups at a gynecologist appointment with the text: “This is bad enough without extremist Dick Black involved.” And below that it reads: “Stop Dick Black. Vote for Shawn Mitchell on November 8th.”
Dominic Gabello, campaign manager for Mitchell said that his campaign didn’t have anything to do with the propaganda.
“I don’t know their reasoning behind their imagery but Dick Black is very extreme on choice. He opposes a woman’s right to abortion in all instances. He sent plastic fetuses to the General Assembly in 2003 to highlight his extremism,” Gabello said. “He’s just too extreme for Loudoun and Prince William families and people to remember this when they’re going to the polls.”
Gabello said the imagery was provocative and it’s NARAL’s decision of what they choose to send out to voters, not Mitchell’s, but agrees that the message of Black’s extremism is what should be conveyed.
“I have to say I’ve worked on about 40 campaigns and that’s probably the most over the top piece I have ever seen, from either side in all of those times. It makes a man feel kind of quesy I can imagine a woman’s feeling in looking at that,” Black said. “I think people have a clear choice - if there’s a single issue they know that they’ve got a pro-life candidate and pro-abortion candidate.”
“Personally, we have remained very focused on jobs and the economy. My opponent has focused almost entirely on social issues,” Black added.