Thursday, August 6, 2009

Advertorial Adversity

© Stan Spire 2009

See that full page spread on Monday in Plattsburgh’s daily (news)paper, the Podunk Times, headlined Safety & Crime Prevention? It featured shots of recent arrestees doing the perp walk, young handcuffed losers escorted by law-enforcement officers. Must make their relatives and friends in the trailer parks feel so proud to see them featured in the paper.

To make some profit off this “public service” page, the paper rounded up some advertisers. Check out all the ads. Not one of them is from a doughnut shop. How can this be?

The top local Law Dogs offer all sorts of bold-print advice in the advertorial. While reading it I felt like standing up, saluting, and saying “Yes, sir!”

BE A WITNESS NOT A VICTIM. ALWAYS lock your doors. IMMEDIATELY report any suspicious activity, vehicles or persons to the police.

Back in the old days Dunkin Donuts used to be the gathering place for all branches of the law. A city cop car parked next to a state police car parked next to a sheriff’s department car. You don’t see that anymore. Looked too suspicious. Maybe a concerned citizen called the police about it.

Here’s my favorite piece of advice in the ad:

DO NOT allow any strangers into your home.

I know I don’t – including strangers wearing uniforms or flashing fancy badges.

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