The actual question is this: Are there religion ghosts in the neverending wars between Middle America and “woke” corporate support for the ever-changing doctrines of the Sexual Revolution?
I would say, “yes.” But it’s clear that the cultural battles now involve armies larger than people in conservative pews. We are talking about changes at the level of big business and, yes, the mainstream news industry. Ask Fox News executives if they are feeling heat from viewers who welcomed Tucker Carlson’s brand of culture-wars coverage.
With the Target story, CNN isn’t exactly hiding its feelings with this headline: “Target is being held hostage by an anti-LGBTQ campaign.”
BZZZZZ! Correction, please, The newsroom bible for Associated Press style now proclaims the orthodoxy of the updated “LGBTQ+” label. What does the “+” mean, in terms of gender identity day to day, hour to hour or minute to minute? It means whatever people want it to mean.
Back to CNN. This is an opinion piece, but the language is basically the same as the news reports.
Fueled by far-right personalities and on social media platforms, the anti-trans campaign spread misleading information about the company’s Pride Month products and its business practices.
Hurting brands’ sales and reputations was the stated goal of the campaign: “The goal is to make ‘pride’ toxic for brands,” said right-wing commentator Matt Walsh on Twitter. “If they decide to shove this garbage in our face, they should know that they’ll pay a price. It won’t be worth whatever they think they’ll gain.”
The campaign became hostile, with threats levied against Target employees and instances of damaged products and displays in stores.
That effectively held Target hostage: The company was forced to make an impossible choice to either safeguard its employees and stores or continue to support customers who wanted to buy the products it was selling.
During this week’s podcast, host Todd Wilken asked a logical question about the Target wars: What would it take to push buttons for “soccer moms”? After all, most ordinary American suburban women have become used to seeing rainbow shirts, unicorn symbols and/or pride posters in the kid-clothing aisles.
This raises an interesting question, one similar to the battles over explicit sexual content in some of the books being welcomed, used or promoted by public officials, including elementary schools. Will journalists discuss the factual details of the items that are causing “parental rights” battles? Check out this recent Rod Dreher missive with some NSFW details.
In this case, what was the “misleading information” about “Pride Month products”? The New York Times at least included this modest paragraph in one story:
Target also removed a Pride line from Abprallen, an L.G.B.T.Q. fashion and accessories company based in London, some of whose designs have been criticized for depicting satanic symbols like pentagrams and a shirt that reads “Satan respects pronouns.” Abprallen did not respond to a request for comment.
Religion angle? Maybe.