Ocean Aerials Inc. owner Bob Bunting should never have been in the position of having to stop accepting paid political ads. The man has a company to run and his business happens to be flying advertising messages over the beach.
The two ads flown over Ocean City last weekend featured pro-Republican messages — “Stop Mad Cow Disease-Defeat Hillary” and “America First-Build The Wall Now.” It’s safe to say hundreds of thousands of beach-goers saw these messages and apparently some were so offended they took their complaints to City Hall as well as Bunting.
The negative reaction resulted in Bunting quickly deciding on his own to suspend all political ads moving forward because he doesn’t want the hassle of a controversy and doesn’t want to cause any trouble for Ocean City. The ads were apparently placed by a person outside the area.
“It’s just not worth the aggravation of people not being able to handle the political system. I agreed to just not accept any political ads whatsoever anymore. I’m going to lay low and not do any political ads,” Bunting told the paper. “… There’s just no tolerance anymore for opposing viewpoints. People don’t understand people buy advertising … These weren’t vulgar ads in anyway. If the Democrats want them now, guess what they don’t get them. Where’s the American way? I’ve never seen anything so nasty. People are scared to say what they really feel anymore. Everyone is just too sensitive. It’s a shame.”
Bunting is right. This is yet another example of society in general being hyper sensitive and the need for those taking umbrage to express their opposition.
We understand people come to Ocean City to escape, as much as possible, the realities of life, in some cases, but it’s absurd that Bunting was ridiculed for accepting these banal, pro-Republican presidential ad messages.
We wish Bunting stood his ground, but certainly can sympathize with the fact the ad revenue was not worth the criticism. He doesn’t want to deal with the negativity. We have been in that position at this newspaper numerous times. It was a mature viewpoint that probably earned him high marks from city officials who were hearing from the negative minority.
For the record, most people we believe were not bothered by these banners. They simply viewed them, thought one way or the other about them and moved on with enjoying the sun and fun. In the end, this is once again an example of the vocal minority being victorious, but it’s a shame that was the case.