OMFG Target. Are you kidding me with this?
This, my dear friends, is not cool. It’s not cool because it portrays boys as predators. Because it sends the message that it is okay for boys to act in a sexually aggressive manner, and that it’s even cute. It’s not okay because it suggests that girls need to be locked up to keep them safe from the uncontrollable urges that boys find themselves awash in. It’s not okay because it says that it’s all damn normal. Isn’t it cute to normalize predatory sexual innuendo? FOR CHILDREN. (That t-shirt is a size 18mos. I found it in the toddler section at Target.) (I’m pretty sure this was a tactic of the Taliban. Keeping women inside to ‘protect’ them from men who couldn’t control their sexual urges. This is an adorable philosophy to emulate, Target!)
And also? My son is not a predator. My son is not a rapist.
Wait. Rape? Who said anything about rape? Well, that shirt does. It says, “Keep your daughters away from me, because otherwise I might do something I can’t control, and can’t be held accountable for!” and because it’s cute-ified (is that a word?) on a t-shirt, we can all sit back and laugh about it. “Oh..haha…it’s cuuuuute.”
I bombed Twitter with this picture Saturday after I took it because I was so pissed about it, and one of my followers posted on Target’s Facebook page,
Very disappointed to see shirts that say “Lock up your daughters!” being sold at Target. Way to further perpetrate rape culture on Valentines Day just to make a buck.
The responses in the comments?
I just cannot handle anymore people being so overly sensitive!! Why is everyone always offended about everything??? How in the world is a little boys shirt “perpetrating rape culture”???
How does that sound remotely close to rape? Geez! I’m going to lock up my daughters from people like YOU.
I’ve read a lot of stupid posts on this page but this just takes the cake. I cannot understand how in the world anyone could be offended by that shirt!!
These are being sold in the boys dept? Aw, if I saw a little guy wearing one, I’d probably chuckle. If I saw a grown man wearing one, I’d think yeah right, dummy… now rape would never enter my mind. Especially on a little boy, geez.
Maybe you should analyze yourself and find out why you think a harmless little boys’ shirt is promoting rape. And this has nothing to do with defending Target. More like defending rationalism and common sense.
it seems people will find anything to complain about. I’ve seen that little boys shirt and there is nothing wrong with it!
Not surprisingly, the t-shirt is harmless and she’s (an I’m) too sensitive and over reacting. Yay! Rape culture and silencing all in one place!
I get it, I do. It’s just a t-shirt but that t-shirt, combined with the idea that the message it’s sending is okay, partnered with all the other sex and gender messages that kids are fed combine to create an environment where men feel emboldened to commit acts of sexual violence because they’ve been told all their lives that it’s okay. Not too long ago I read something that said one of the reasons that sexually aggressive behavior is so common among early-twenties men is because when they’re all sitting around in a group talking about sex, and women, and the talk takes an aggressive turn, no one speaks up. No one says, “Oh, shit, you had sex with her while she was passed out? Dude, you’re a fucking rapist.” Instead they all sit there uncomfortably and smirk at one another. No one wants to be THAT guy, so the behavior goes unchecked. And the more often men observe other men’s behavior going unchecked the more their own behavior is emboldened.
So, when I see shit like this, I check it. This is me checking the behavior. I’m that guy. And I’m okay with it.
The Mamafesto has a post up today that talks about kids clothing and gender messages too, you should check it out. (We didn’t even coordinate!)