Tuesday, June 7, 2016
Toronto's CHIN Bikini Contest Falls Victim to P.C. Police
And God forbid you mention a powerful woman’s fashion choices in print. In our quest to excise the world of sexism, we’ve become overbearingly, tediously and outrageously politically correct.
Rather than risk offending anyone, we instead choose to cloak ourselves in bubble wrap and stick our heads in the sand like nervous ostriches. Just about everything now comes with a “trigger warning” — a term so overused it’s now essentially meaningless. Censorship is the new norm.
This is all a bit ironic in our quest for sexual, gender and racial freedom, no?
While political correctness rears its eye-roll-worthy head everywhere, it’s particularly bad in Canada.
It’s our nation’s nature to apologize even when there’s nothing to apologize for. We decided collectively long ago that the right to free speech should take a backseat to the possibility of hurting someone’s feelings. Yes, you can actually go to jail for saying something offensive enough in public.
But forget the absurdity of our hate speech laws: Now we’ve moved on to banning bikini contests. The CHIN picnic’s beloved annual bikini contest — a 40-year-old tradition — was cancelled this year.
In an emailed statement, president Lenny Lombardi chalked the cancellation up to putting the focus on diversity: “CHIN Radio’s mandate has always been to promote multiculturalism in Canada, and after 49 years of hosting the bikini contest, they have decided to say goodbye and focus on their roots.”
While that may be partly true, a not-so-small part of me suspects CHIN is actually scared of the PC police. They folded in the face of potential controversy.
The thing is CHIN’s bikini contest isn’t sexist: It contains both male and female categories and isn’t overly sexualized. While there’s some bare skin involved, it’s all in good fun and acts as a draw for a festival that some might not otherwise think to attend.
If you don’t like bikinis or find them weirdly offensive, guess what? You don’t have to watch or participate. The entire event doesn’t have to be shut down to appease a few naysayers.
The men and women who participate in these contests always seem to have a blast. Who are we to tell them what they can and can’t do with their bodies or judge their reasons for competing?
We have much larger things to worry about than guys and girls strutting around in themed swimwear. Let’s stop wasting our energy fighting nonsensical small battles and focus on what really matters.
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