Violence Against Women Is No Laughing Matter

vintage sexist ad Is It Always Illegal To Kill a Woman?

In the hey it’s so funny I forgot to laugh department, this is one ad that a smirking Donald Trump could easily have written the copy for. Whether Trump was joking or not about his not so veiled suggestion that someone shoot his female opponent, it is a repugnant comment.

Given that Mr Trump wants to Make America Misogynist Again the ad’s copy is a perfect retro fit for his sensibility

When it comes to misogyny in advertising,  1947’s Pitney Bowes Postage Meter ad easily ranks in the top ten.

And that’s saying a lot in a culture that was prolific in sexist advertising.

In the ad we learn Pete Jones, has spent 6 months convincing the home office to finally purchase a Pitney Bowes Postage Meter for the office. But he hits a wall when the only stenographer he has, a redhead named Miss Morissey balks at using it. Pete tells his story:

“‘I’ve no mechanical aptitude. Machines mix me up, kind of,” she says. “As if we asked her to fly a P-80. I almost blow my top,” he recalls, clearly in need of anger management training.

He attempts to explain this modern efficient machine to the ditzy dame, explaining that  “it’s practically heaven’s gift to the working girl…and so on. But with the Morissey, no soap.”

Mr. Jones continues his story:

“I try diplomacy. ‘Miss Morissey, I want you to personally try it for two weeks. If you don’t like it then-back it goes to the factory! Okay?’…She acts like an early Christian about to be lunch for a lion, but gives in.”

“So help me- two weeks later she has a big pink bow on the handle of the postage meter-like it was an orchid or something. I give it the gape.”

“‘Kinda cute, ain’t it,” says Miss Morissey. ‘But a very efficient machine, Mr Jones. Now the mail is out early enough so I get to the girl’s room in time to hear all of the dirt’.”

Exasperated Pete wonders finally :”Is it always illegal to kill a woman!”

The answer to this silly question is still a resounding no!

Not then, not now is threatening violence on a woman remotely funny.



  1. It seems that we could read between the lines with this one: First off, Miss Morissey was a lot smarter than he gave her credit. During the war, she’d worked on the assembly line with Rosey the Riveter herself. She isn’t going to give a guy who calls her ditzy any idea how smart she really is. Bet she wanted to strangle the guy with that pink bow. It’s also illegal for a woman to kill a man. But I think she might have gotten off for temporary insanity.


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