In 1963 Paul Krassner
included a poster that said "Fuck Communism"
in his magazine The Realist
. The poster was very popular with counter-culture types. Kurt Vonnegut described it as a "miracle of compressed intelligence nearly as admirable for potent simplicity, in my opinion, as Einstein's e=mc2" because it demonstrated "how preposterous it was for so many people to be responding to both words with such cockamamie Pavlovian fear and alarm."
Krassner himself often told this story
about the poster:
At a midwestern college, one graduating student held up a FUCK COMMUNISM! poster as his class was posing for the yearbook photo. Campus officials found out and insisted that the word FUCK be air-brushed out. But then the poster would read COMMUNISM! So that was air-brushed out too, and the yearbook ended up publishing a class photo that showed this particular student holding up a blank poster. Very dada.
I wanted to add this yearbook photo to the Hoax Photo Database
. I thought it would make a great addition, particularly to the Deleted Details
category. However, I can't locate a copy of it anywhere, and I'm beginning to suspect it's existence is an urban legend. After all, why was Krassner so vague about the exact college?
I'd love to be proven wrong, but what I suspect happened is that someone held up a copy of the poster during graduation, and then people started to speculate about what campus officials would do if a picture of this stunt made it into the yearbook, and eventually this turned into what campus officials had done