It is summer, a time when weather is generally hotter than it is at other times of year. In Ottawa, where I live, I know this to be true. When things are hot, people like to be comfortable. So, they don’t wear sweaters outside of their air conditioned homes and they like to go swimming in bathing suits that they have bought just for that kind of thing.
This idea is mostly assumed to be a good one. People should obviously feel comfortable in sweltering heat and swimming is much fun.
And here is another goddamn thing: women are people.
Well duh, right?
But, we’ve already seen a few stories (among the thousands that just don’t make their way to the internet) about women being kicked out of malls and swimming pools because they were wearing clothes, in many of these cases, bathing suits.
Mike, wait, there has to be more to it than that. I mean, women wear clothes all the time. What was so different this time?
The more specific reason: The outfits these women chose to wear were deemed very likely to rile up and excite teenage boys.
Genuine human people were told by some other people who are for some strange reason in a position to make clothing decisions for other adults, that they could not stay at a pool because the swimsuit they put on to spend time at that swimming pool would excite teenage boys.
So here is a quick outline for parents raising boys who might are easily distracted, excited, or otherwise rendered incapable of functioning because they have seen human wearing a bathing suit:
- Make sure they know and understand that women are people.
- Make sure they know that women, who are people, don’t need you making decisions for them.
- Make sure they know women are allowed to take up space.
- Make sure they understand that it is not a woman’s responsibility to refrain from wearing any single piece of clothing for the purpose of keeping you from being distracted.
- Make sure they understand that this goes for all women of all shapes and sizes wearing any kind of bathing suit on any day of the year. Any. Day.
And as yourself a question too:
Are they really getting excited by it, or are you just a hateful, sexist person who thinks a woman wearing a bathing suit that doesn’t cover her entire body should have to abide by a different set of rules than you?
Have a great summer!