On the offensive!
Sex is easy. Sexy photos, I mean. It’s easy to discern what is offensive with sexy photos. Unless the word sexy is offensive, as in gender-specific rather than gender-neutral. Like a check this box or that box kind of thing. No, that’s not meant to be a sexist double entendre. I’m just trying to discuss offensive images. Am I imposing my interpretation of sexy on you? Okay, let's start over with something completely unoffensive - a photo of me from my rural small town '70s high school yearbook. Wait. Everyone wore really short skirts then. Even teachers, like, in their forties. An honor student was recently shamed home from school for a skirt four inches longer. By a teacher. Probably in her forties. Who probably wears leggings to Walmart on Saturdays. So all the girls and women in my high school year book have become offensive. Okay, new thought. Let’s take it through a religious filter. Religion may be easier. Most fundamental religions, ethos, ways of explaining why we are here, are offended by skin. Human skin. Well, women’s skin. Scratch that. No, not literally. Because I know fundamentalist guys who condemn breastfeeding in public, but are okay with string bikinis on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Understanding offensive images isn't so easy. Is this photo offensive? It was taken at a historical marker commemorating Marquette and Joliet near the confluence of the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. (Google them, young students. And teachers. I mean Marquette & Joliet, not the rivers. Well, maybe the rivers, too, no offense.) I think it’s a beautiful pic. Father Marquette was a Jesuit missionary. One of his duties was to convert native peoples. The cross is a symbol of Jesus Christ. I call this photo Pere Marquette Was Here. Because, well, he was. Does this photo celebrate cultural genocide, honor Jesus Christ, or is it a pleasing perspective of blues & golds? Feel free to discuss.