At This Holiday Time, Can’t We Put Our Political Differences Aside?


Sometimes we sit back after a long night of surfing the design superhighway and wonder, are all designers really Democrats? Because it certainly feels like it sometimes. Or maybe it’s just that the loudest designers just happen to be Democrats. And then, we wonder, how do Republican designers feel about that?

Steven Heller takes on the issue in this season’s Eye with “The L Word,” a commentary on how liberal views are being constantly injected into design discourse. Heller discusses the political leanings of blogs (our personal favorite was this Design Observer piece), and a particular portion of the AIGA conference this year that made even us uncomfortable:

After one session where President Bush was lambasted at the Denver AIGA conference, I talked to a few attendees who readily complained that injecting partisan political rhetoric into what they believed was supposed to be a ‘neutral’ organisation challenged their faith in AIGA’s ability to represent them. Although they wanted to remain members of the sole national professional design organisation in the United States, they resented having to put up with what they construed as negative, at times offensive, ‘propaganda,’ as though their opinions were irrelevant. Asked whether they would consider starting counter-initiatives, they lamented that their views would never get taken seriously, so why bother.