Straight from the They Are Grooming Our Children news desk, I bring to you the latest thing that has conservatives shaking their collective fist at the sky: tuck-friendly bathing suits at Target. When I did a quick search on this, I was gifted with a page full of Twitter posts and conservative media-based articles railing against the Pride displays and products sold at Target.
If you want to become both depressed and amused, go ahead and try the search: tuck-friendly bathing suits. I’ll wait.
I don’t get it. Okay, I mean I get it, but I don’t get it. Get it?
What I get is that there exists an agenda to shut down any LGBTQ-related, well, anything. And hey, isn’t that a kick when you consider the conservative rhetoric about the “LGBTQ agenda?” People are losing their shit over the mere sight of anything that looks like it might be gay. Soon, they’ll be boycotting The Wizard of Oz for mention of a rainbow. Oh, and gay icon Judy Garland, of course. From the horrific, Nazi-style bills being introduced in multiple states to ban gender-affirming care to knocking down Pride displays, the agenda couldn’t be more clear.
I even get where it comes from. Most of the backlash stems from evangelicals who have always had a mission to not only rid the world of “evil,” but with a sense of entitlement to define evil for everyone. Anyone remember the penis castle outrage from The Little Mermaid?
The part I don’t get is how people can be so easily riled up by something that doesn’t truly affect them. Sure, I know there are people who are perpetrating the notion that children are being groomed to be trans or gay — but that’s just it. It’s not based in reality or even evidential. It’s a myth being stirred up by those who want political power. And with a 24-hour news cycle and social media the force of that myth can be massively influential. Peer pressure can shut down anyone without a solid sense of self.
Wait. So maybe I do get it. Huh.
You might think that in sunny, laid-back, liberal California these problems don’t exist. Yes, from a legislative and governmental standpoint, we are much better off than Texas or Florida. But that laid-back California ‘tude doesn’t extend to people on the street. Violence directed at trans people still happens here. I still get plenty of stares, frowns and smirks from (I assume) conservatives in our local mall, grocery store, or on a run in my own neighborhood. Apparently, the teachings of Jesus about loving your fellow man can be easily forgotten when confronted by real humans.
People who try to stir up controversy that didn’t exist until they picked up a spoon (penis castle) are a mystery to me. Are they bored? Are they angry about some failed part of their lives and are taking it out on the nearest target (pun intended)? Do they want a gold star from the Conservative Powers that Be?
I don’t know, and I don’t want to assume. Because the damage is being done, regardless of the origination. But here’s a question: What happens if they win and squash out every bit of “evil” in the world that they see being perpetrated? What happens when the dog finally catches the car? What’s next? Or to put a finer point on it, who’s next?
I tend to think that they’ll just move on to a new outlet for their anger. I can’t imagine what or who that could be, but I also think that no one is safe. There will always be another swimsuit. No matter who you are, you will one day be a target for the wrath of those who feel privileged enough to judge the rest of the population — yet are somehow immune to judgment. Hey, didn’t Jesus say something about this? I was pretty sure he shared his thoughts on the subject of judgment, but it’s been many years since I picked up a Bible.
Note: I know quite a few Christians who are lovely, inclusive, intelligent people. The problem isn’t their religion, it’s the way the extremists exploit it for personal gain.
It’s ironic that those who shout the loudest about their freedoms are the first to try and block it for others.
It’s just a swimsuit. It has extra room in the crotch. That’s all. What does it matter if a person wants to tuck their genitals into a swimsuit so said genitals don’t announce their presence to the bathing world? Who is harmed? Explain it to me like 5-year old. How does it affect anyone else? Especially when the item in question is hanging on a rack at Target, not even yet invading the precious bathing space of “normal” folk? Without the pronouncement of the potentially afflicted, how would a child even know about the existence of such an item? Without the exaggerated wailing of the privileged yet disenfranchised few (and they are few, only a loud few), who would care?
And let’s dig into what really happened here. No, they didn’t find the swimsuit in the children’s section. That was a lie, like the how-to-do-gay-sex book they said they saw in the children’s section at the library. They didn’t even know about it until they heard some talking head mention it on TV. They would never have known about it, going through daily life. They sought it out to make a video. And they have to lie, because the truth means they won’t have an outlet for their anger. They’ll have to start looking inward, and that’s much harder to do.
So I repeat:
It’s. just. a swimsuit.