Target made a BUNCH of people angry last week when removing gender-based labels in some of its departments. And when I say a bunch of people I’m referring to people who would most likely self-identify as Conservative American Christians.
Social media lit up with many people blasting Target and accusing them of things like trying to subvert moral and decent society. Others accused Target of caving to the LGBTQ agenda.
Of course there is always the stand-by “sissification” argument. Any time the liberals get their way they end up contributing to the sissification of good, decent, conservative way of life.
- You’re taking away our guns – sissification.
- You’re making worship music in church about feelings and emotions – sissifcation.
- You’re removing gender labels from store signage in some departments – sissification.
But that’s not what Target is doing. Target is recognizing that there is a lot of social construction in how we view gender in society. What, exactly, are boys toys? Are girls not allowed to enjoy them? On the flip side, are boys not allowed to like something labeled as a girl product? I can’t help that my 5 year old son enjoys watching Dora the Explorer thwart Swiper the Fox.
Are all Dora products off-limits to him?
Target is simply saying that the social constructs of what is manly or girlie are not going to play a factor in how they merchandise. Bravo to them. And here’s the funny thing – Target isn’t the first one to take such an approach to gender constructs.
I read somewhere once that now there is neither Jew nor Gentile, slave nor free, there is no male or female. We are all now one in Christ Jesus.
Oh, yeah – IT’S IN THE BIBLE! (see Galatians 3:28)
It’s not that God is saying there aren’t differences among people. He’s saying that the social constructs that divide people do not play any part in how we relate to being part of the kingdom of God. Perhaps it’s time for red-blooded Americans to throttle back a little bit on the gender stuff. I’m not saying you have to stop loving NASCAR and start attending tea parties in the rose garden (see what I did there with gender stereotypes?).
I’m saying that it’s not a big deal for Target to change how they label their stores.
I’m saying it’s not a big deal for worship music to be emotional and poetic.
I’m saying that our idea of what is for boys and what is for girls comes more from society than we’d care to realize. We have done it – not God. If Paul can tell us that the social constructs that divide humanity play no part in God’s kingdom, then the idea that a store can embrace that philosophy seems…
right on target.