Saturday, 6 February 2016

dander and demonisation

If it’s to be believed, the Norwegian Council of Heart and Lung Health is encouraging, as reported by the Norwegian edition of the Local, to get parents steaming mad at dirt and the threat of dust-bunnies by portraying Adolf Hitler, Kim Jong-il and Muammar Qaddafi as plush toys and uncuddly repositories of respiratory-ills. Not withstanding that over-sanitary conditions lead to over-sensitivity, lumping these characters together threatens to make a caricature of out of each of these tyrants and place them on the same level. While the government is not necessarily advocating the destruction of childhood familiars, but rather only regular and thorough washing of them, the retreat to allergic reactions and bespoke dietary sensitivities (whether real or imagined) has been fraught with vulnerabilities and fretful mothering. What would you think if your teddy suddenly was turned to a symbol of hate and evil? Does that make you a better house-keeper and less likely to sweep things under the rug?