Over 1,000,000 signatures and counting.
That’s how many people have pledged to never set foot into another Target store so long as their restroom policy remains. As you’re already well aware, the popular chain of stores announced their bathrooms would no longer be gender specific. That despite what we’ve all grown accustomed to (you know–men and women visting their respective restrooms when the urge hit), the rules have now changed for Target shoppers. Their policy concerning the ‘loo states that men and women who identify with the opposite gender may choose to visit the restroom they most identify with.
This announcement didn’t necessarily go over too well with the majority of the American people. In fact, upon the releasing this statement early last week thousands upon thousands of Americans voiced their contempt over this clause, siting issues with safety, discomfort, etc. Many were/are outraged. So much so, that they’ve begun to boycott. They’ve put their foot down in protest. They’ve yelled, and screamed, and let loose on social media outlets over such a decision. But what do you think? Should you and I add our names to the list and vow to boycott the store as well?
As a Christian woman, I say no.
Now I know this might not be the popular opinion and/or stance, but hear me out just for a minute as to why I feel the way I do.
In recent years, there have been a number of companies I’ve provided my business to who have gone against my beliefs and basic values. Their stances are not my own. Their views? In opposition of mine. They donate to organizations I would never support. They make choices that I just flat-out disagree with, and so on and so forth. I’ll admit, it’s frustrating. But to boycott each and every one of these companies/businesses because of said reasons? Friends, I wouldn’t be able to shop, dine, eat, or go anywhere, really because in our present-day culture Christian values are considered outdated. In fact, they’re not really considered at all. So we’re forced to deal, right? We’re forced to pick and choose which businesses are the lesser evil so to speak. It’s not fun and it doesn’t feel right. But unfortunately, it is what it is.
Second, I feel for the employees, the managers, and Target team members who are forced to deal with the repercussions of this new store policy. They are the ones called to enforce this rule. They are the ones who listen to the protests, who receive the nasty looks, and who hear the harsh words we the people spew their way. And all because they donned their red t-shirt and showed up to work when scheduled. A boycott not only jeopardizes the future of their own position(s) but our anger towards this current situation makes their work environment hostile, hectic, and just downright unpleasant. I don’t know about you, but I’ve worked retail before. The hours are long, the pay is low (or at least it was back in the day), and the work is underappreciated. The last thing those Target team members want to deal with is pandemonium over the lavatory.
Now, don’t get me wrong here, I fully understand the weight of this policy. I get what it’s saying and what it’s doing. I’m just as upset as you are when I think about the potential of what could happen in many of these restrooms, but I just think there’s so much more we can do with our time and energy rather than to blast and boycott a large chain of stores who aren’t likely to change their bathroom policy anytime soon. Besides, you and I have a choice. We don’t have to use the restrooms at Target. We don’t have to let our children use them either. We can go next door and visit a neighboring store instead. Is that conevenient? No. Is it easy to do when you have a full cart and a crying two year-old about to burst into full tantrum mode? Not at all. But as much as I’ve tried to fight againt our new cultural norms in the past, I’ve realized I have to learn to deal with the reality that is and is coming to be. I can protest or I can show compassion. I can yell or I can calmly deal. I can show anger or I can exhibit love. It’s all about choices and what matters most in the eyes of Jesus.
So as unpopular as it might be–I’m going to continue to shop at Target…and use the restroom at home.
**Please note: I know this is a very sensitive topic. Please know that all uneccessary and rude comments will be removed. Let’s keep this discussion positive and mature, please.