A press conference was held this morning in Anaheim, at City Hall, by representatives of URSA (United in Respect for Stuffed Animals), as they gathered to decry the recent actions of Matt Cunningham, a paid blogger who does work for the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce and for lobbyist Curt Pringle. Cunningham is also an appointee of Orange County Supervisor Todd Spitzer, on the Orange County Parks and Recreation Commission.
Cunningham posted a photo ridiculing the mourning rituals for young Latino men shot and killed by police, triggering outrage from mothers whose sons were killed by officers, according to the Voice of OC.
The photo, published by Cunningham on his “Anaheim Blog” last week, shows a defaced teddy bear lying next to a Virgin de Guadalupe candle, a scene that clearly mimics widely publicized images of memorial sites that Latino families place on sidewalks to honor the young men.
Here is one of the infamous Cunningham pictures:
Colleen Shannon, a spokeswoman for URSA, said during the press conference that “Cunningham not only insulted Latinos, he also obviously defaced a teddy bear – an action we believe to bely sociopathic tendencies.”
It should be noted that Cunningham says he found the teddy bear in an already defaced condition. Shannon believes otherwise and made it clear that she thinks that Cunningham personally defaced the teddy bear in question.
Isaac Bodkins, a member of the American Society of Senior Psychologists, also appeared at the press conference. Bodkins said that “Cunningham’s actions indicate a severe antipathy towards stuffed animals, which may indicate that he also generally dislikes children.”
A reporter at the press conferenced asked Bodkins if these feelings were also indicated in Cunningham’s actions of a few years ago when he outed the names of young victims of molestation by Catholic priests and lay people.
Bodkins replied “Well yes, clearly this Cunningham fellow has a problem with young people.”
Shannon called on Orange County Supervisor Todd Spitzer to do the right thing and remove Cunningham from the Orange County Parks Commission, on the grounds that someone this unfriendly to children should have nothing to do with our public parks.
Shannon also addressed the Disney Company in her remarks, “We are a few miles away from Disneyland, where you can hardly walk ten feet without running into stores that sell stuffed animals. The Disney Company also made millions on their Toy Story franchise – movies about loving and taking care of toys. As a member of the Anaheim Chamber of Commerce, the Disney Company should be doing everything possible to disassociate themselves from Cunningham.”
Shannon also noted that Cunningham’s actions should serve as a wake up call for the Republican Party of Orange County. (Cunningham is a Republican and he mostly works with Republican politicians). Shannon said that “Teddy bears are named after President Theodore “T.R.” Roosevelt, Jr., who was a Republican before he became founded the Progressive Party in 1912. Obviously a man who defaces teddy bears should not be working with Republicans.”
Finally, noting the holiday season, Shannon said that “It is a shame that Cunningham destroyed a teddy bear that he could have given to a needy child during this holiday season.”
Editor’s Note: In case you have not guessed it this post was inspired by The Onion.