PASSIONATE issues always make for interesting campaign material, whether it’s memes or handpainted bedsheets.
But the question is always, how far do you go?
This byelection campaign for the seat of Orange has facilitated some of the most eyecatching contributions, due in no small part to the greyhound ban and council amalgamations.
Two residents took their conviction on the greyhounds to poster board and while would certainly understand the value of choosing something direct and controversial to grab attention, we would question the comparison of Premier Mike Baird and Deputy Premier Troy Grant to Adolf Hitler and Kim Jong-un.
The greyhound owners say generally, the response from the public has been good, but they might not have considered these two dictators have been responsible for thousands, even millions, of dead and will be remembered as two of the most evil men in history.
Many of Orange’s migrants from the post-World War II period were from eastern Europe and they and their families would recall the terror of those years all too well.
Baird and Grant might have failed to consult as widely as the greyhound industry and local government would have wanted on their respective issues, but they are hardly in the same category.
People might recall former prime minister Tony Abbott’s speech at an anti-carbon tax rally in March 2011 while he was opposition leader, standing in front of posters saying ‘Ju-liar – Bob Brown’s bitch’ and ‘Ditch the Witch’.
This was of course referring to then-prime minister Julia Gillard.
Sure, Abbott did not write the signs, but choosing not to move away from them earned him well-deserved criticism because he chose not to distance himself from a lower standard of debate.
Particularly women at the time questioned whether this was the new norm and whether it was acceptable to lower the leader of the country to such terms.
Labor recently took the decision not to support a plebiscite on same-sex marriage because of the impact it might have on the LGBTI community.
The government may have backed down on the greyhound ban, but it remains important to maintain a standard when putting a position forward.