Printed by Mel-Belle Enterprises of Springfield, Illinois, this circa 1967 pamphlet used the imagined voice of the pictured baby to criticize the reach of government in social and economic terms. As the narrator explains, “I’m not very smart yet, but I’m smart enough to see what you are doing to the country in which I must grow up and support my family.” The pamphlet then went on to decry the prosp ect of a future with government-run medicine, education, housing, and employment, before criticizing taxes and supposedly inflated wages driven by organized labor.
Perhaps most famously illustrated by Lyndon Johnson’s reelection campaign in the so-called “Daisy” advertisement of 1964, activists from all political positions used children to symbolize the immediacy of many social or political trends during this period. The idea that conditions could change so quickly that the world a child was born in would look nothing like the world it grew up to heightened the urgency of the pamphlet’s final missive: “If there were any other place in the world where government wouldn’t plan my life for me even more so, it wouldn’t be so bad, but America is the only place left—and look what you are doing to it. Aren’t you ashamed!!!”