There is a giant statue of this famous photo at a large intersection in a city near where I live:

legendary_kiss_v-j_day_in_times_square_alfred_eisenstaedt

The other day on the radio I heard a debate about whether or not this statue should be removed due to its OFFENSIVE nature.

Say what?

Yes. This famous photo, published in Life magazine in 1945 (after WWII) shows the exuberance of a soldier returning home from the war. It captured the spirit of happiness and joy in the air at the end of years of war and stress, and the gladness of our soldiers returning home.

Can you guess why this might be offensive? I searched my half-asleep mind for an answer. It’s a game I sometimes play when listening to talk radio. I attempt to riddle out what the guests might say before they say it. But this one had me genuinely puzzled. Was it just an anti- military sentiment? No. Was the man armed and it was anti-gun? No. Was the woman immodestly dressed (although that shouldn’t raise any eyebrows, especially in the summer, but I was really stretching…). No.

Apparently there was a level of concern that this statue would encourage sexual attacks against woman.

That’s right. If there is a prominent statue of a man GRABBING a strange woman and kissing her, it might encourage random man to just GRAB random women and not only kiss them, but perhaps ravage them in other ways.

Let me be clear. I am in NO WAY minimizing the horror of genuine attacks against women. I am ABSOLUTELY in no way whatsoever saying it is EVER okay to force any woman to do anything against her will.

But to suggest that this rather innocuous statue would incite a man to a sexual assault seems a bit thin to me.

It reminds me of other examples in society where there is “zero tolerance” of things that become absurdities.

The child who gets kicked off the school bus for making a shooting gesture with his hand because the school has a no weapons policy and there is zero tolerance. As if a hand can ever be loaded or confused with a real gun…

The kindergardener who gets expelled under the sexual harassment policy for kissing a girl on the cheek rather than spoken to and educated because there is zero tolerance for “sex crimes”- oh, and the police were also called on that one because that is school policy and a report had to be filed…

The list goes on, and unfortunately there are many real ills in society. But to treat everyone like a potential criminal element just waiting to be unleashed on the population is a bit of overkill I think. It’s sad that we have to be so vigilant about such things. But in this case I think people have gone overboard.

I’m really curious to know what you all think. Is this statue objectively offensive, or is the PC patrol working overtime?