Monday, March 31, 2008

Feminists Lobby For Confusing Rest Room Placards


Lawton, OK- “Women wear pants too,” stated Jeanie Brooks, an area feminist. “It’s degrading and sexist to portray women wearing only dresses.”

This is the central concept fueling the debate on whether or not to change rest room placards city-wide. A local feminist group is responsible for the initiative. The group says that once the signs within Lawton are changed they intend to bring their fight to the state courts and eventually make the effort national.

The proposed change would modify the signs indicating the women’s rest room from the current “woman in a dress” pictograph to a new “woman in pants” icon.

Opponents of the change argue that a change to the standard symbols would cause confusion. Dan Regent, a city council member in Lawton, commented on the proposal.

“We’ve been using the current system for a very long time,” said Regent. “People expect to see a certain image, and changing that image would be an unnecessary disruption to the public.”

Feminist groups in the area have been actively proposing these types of changes in recent years. Last year, there was an attempt to replace the word “unisex” with “multisex”. The group noted that the term unisex does not sufficiently illustrate the division between the sexes.

“It’s not good enough to combine us into one equivalent gender,” argued Brooks. “We are different, and the Lawton feminists will not rest until we are treated as such.”

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