Aug 21

Chinese legislators try banning TF – in 1989!

Just something I found while digging through the Lexis-Nexis article database, which might help explain the current upsurge of TF activity in the Asian market…

The Associated Press

February 19, 1989, Sunday, AM cycle

Legislators Urge Ban Of U.S. Television Cartoon

SECTION: Business News

LENGTH: 270 words

DATELINE: BEIJING

Twenty Chinese lawmakers have condemned a futuristic U.S. television cartoon as poison and urged the government to ban broadcasts of “The Transformers” and its toy characters, a report said Sunday.

The legislators “believe that the absurd ideological content of ‘The Transformers,’ especially its promotion of war as something good, will poison the next generation,” said the official People’s Daily said.

“The Transformers” is a futuristic cartoon about robots who can alter their shapes to become cars, planes and weapons, and who battle other evil robots.

The official Xinhua News Agency said it has been shown on Shanghai and Beijing television in translation, and several publishing houses have issued picture books of characters from the cartoon.

U.S.-made toys of the cartoon characters also have been sold in China for the “excessively expensive” price of about $$270 per set – nearly as much as the average Chinese worker makes in a year, the news agency said. The toys are sold in the United States by Hasbro Inc.

The legislators who objected to the program and toys are members of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, which meets periodically between annual sessions of the full congress.

The reports did not say if any government department had responded to the appeal or if the legislators planned to push for the whole congress to take some action on it.

The congress has had a real voice in drafting and approving laws only for the past few years, but legislation still is proposed by government ministries or the ruling Communist Party, not individual legislators.

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