American Family Association’s Donald E. “The Wildman” Wildmon is on the warpath again — this time turning his attention from depraved gay people to depraved straight people. Seems he’s out to rid the world of the kind of smut found in Redbook magazine. Yes, Redbook, that venerable bastion of womanly lore and recipes.
Wildmon quotes Marcia Segelstein, a columnist from one of AFA’s media outlets One News Now:
I’ve referred in the past to modern-day women’s magazines as a bellweather of cultural decline, but I think it’s worth repeating. Sitting in a doctor’s waiting room leafing through magazines, as I was recently, can end up being an eye-opening experience. And even if you can handle it … or just decide to stop reading … imagine your young teenage daughter picking up that innocent-looking women’s magazine. What behavior will she end up believing society condones?
When I was a child, I remember looking through the magazines my mother had around the house. I don’t think she ever gave a second thought to what I might come across, nor should she have. My, how things have changed.
Of course some things never change, like my third-grade sense of potty humor. Segelstein, in her zeal to share the juicy stuff, but not too much of it, just made the excerpts she chose sound, well, funny:
If you’ve got 10 seconds:“Alone? Sneak a peak at yourself!” “Make eye contact with a cute stranger.”
If you’ve got 30 seconds: “Clench your g___ muscles.” “Spray a dollop of whipped cream on your chest and ….”
Got 10 minutes? “Swap your coffee break for a visit with your v______r.”
What? Clench your giggle muscles? Visit with your vaporizer? I don’t get it. At my age, even a 10-second sneak peak at myself is way too long. And middle age is no time to be running around for 30 seconds with a dollop of whipped cream on one’s chest.
Wildmon, as usual, goes off into his private rhetorical swamp in the letter he asks readers to write to the president of Hearst Corp., publishers of Redbook:
Dear President Ganzi,
I am greatly disappointed that Redbook would give such pagan, hedonistic advice concerning sex.
Our society is suffering from a decaying moral structure, and Redbook endorses such sewage.
For the sake of our children, I ask that you reconsider your endorsement of such hedonistic pagan sexual practices.
Wow, hedonistic and pagan sexual practices! Sounds kinky, don’t it? Bring on the whipped cream! I, of course, changed the wording a little to reflect my belief that it’s the Donster who is a practicer of sexual acts both hedonistic and pagan.
Point is, last time I checked, we still have a little something called free speech in this country. If Marcia Segelstein doesn’t want to read advice for a woman dating a married man, then she can flip through to the recipe section or the interior design section of the book reviews and health advice, all of which can be found in Redbook magazine. She doesn’t have to read the advice for the woman whose sex drive dropped off after she had her baby. For that matter, she could take her Bible with her to the doctor’s office and avoid those trashy women’s magazines and instead read up on some of the Jehovah-sanctioned sex and violence of the Old Testament.
The problem with the Wildmons and Segelsteins of the world is they want to impose their beliefs on the rest of us, they want to legislate what we can read or watch or who we give money to and how many rights some of us get and others don’t. But these babble-thumpers are so far out on the fringe that the only way they can exert any power is to band together in pitchfork and torch-carrying mobs and boycott that which they don’t understand.
Don, Marcia, good luck with your Redbook boycott. I predict it will be at least as successful as AFA’s Ford Motor boycott.