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Weird-ass sign.

The notice was posted on the wall to the left of the toilet, “Please refrain from flushing feminine products, personal/baby wipes, or other foreign objects down toilets.”

Upon the first read, the sign seemed innocuous enough. Who wants to pay money to fix a clogged toilet? But each time I read it, the wording nagged at me. I mean, WTH did the campground mean by “foreign objects?” And then I got it.

Condoms.

Which is precisely why the message irritated me. Women and children were called out by name and deed, but not men—the users of said “foreign objects.”

This is the typical shaming of women and children that both subsets encounter on a daily basis. I know it seems trite. Like a sign can’t hurt you. But when you add up the thousands of times this type of negative reinforcement occurs in a lifetime, it’s not so trite.

No one issues a decree in the town square when a man cuts his finger and bleeds out all over the place, yet that’s what we do where it concerns women and their reproductive abilities—something that should be exulted—given we carry the next generation within our bodies.

Man, if that sign disturbs me, I can’t imagine what my sisters of color put up with, likely, on an HOURLY basis.

Here’s to you if you see the beauty and power of both women and men. For the positive traits inherent in one sex, is the lack in the other. When combined and respected, the whole advances the universe.