June 8, 2006

The Wingnut Mannequins


Maybe the culture war’s “battle of the week” was slated for Washington, but it seems Boston saw a lot more of a showdown.

The AP reported Wednesday (via Huffington Post) that an anti-gay rights group in Boston had intimidated Macy’s into removing two store-window mannequins honoring the 2006 Boston Pride event.  Given that Bush and Frist arranged a (failed) Senate vote on an anti-gay marriage amendment this week, this story couldn’t be more timely.  As well, the visuals (and the attendant mindset) are just too fascinating not to offer to The BAG community for deconstruction (and also, a little blow back).

What I’ve done is borrow the photos from the Mass Resistance website, and then reproduce their captions (poor grammar, and all) onto the sticky notes.


Sure, there are some obvious points that stand out (if, you’ll excuse the pun).  For example, the homophobes didn’t realize that the so-called “dress” happened to be a gay rights flag.  (Of course, any symbolic play would be completely lost on smaller minds, wouldn’t it?)


Also, isn’t it fascinating how threatened these people are that men actually have nipples?

Mostly though, I’m just dying to hear your interpretation of the assumptions, cultural codes and even fashion norms that cause these people to find the second set of mannequins so “normal” (and those shirts “normal,” besides).

And then, what about Macy’s in all this?  Did I hear someone say “backlash?”

(Mass Resistance follow-up here.  Besides gloating pic of empty window, this page offers Macy’s contact information for counter-complaints.)

(images: massresistance.com)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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