What a leader for news story: “It’s still going to be legal in Arizona for trucks to have splash guards with racist terms and silhouettes of naked women.” It seems that an Arizona state lawmaker wanted to make the use of popular mudflaps like the one pictured here illegal, and the state House has rejected his proposal on the basis that Arizonans have the right to have whatever the hell mudflaps they want on their own vehicles.

Democrat Theresa Ulmer won’t be happy about that: “I personally am tired of explaining to my 11-year-old son why [women] are depicted on mudflaps, but not all women are 36Ds. He’s very confused by that,” she says. I would suggest that if you believe her on this point, you’re just gullible. She can hardly have a normal conversation with her son in the car these days, it seems, without encountering his tiring questions about the shape of the figure depicted on other peoples’ mudflaps. Her son is such a vacuous, halfwitted child, she would have us believe, that he gets confused about the image on a mudflap because it doesn’t match reality. Either he is so indoctrinated by his mother on feminist issues that the shape of mudflaps bother him on a regular basis, or she made up the whole story to advance her political agenda. I’m going with the latter.

If he’s so confused about it, perhaps Ulmer could start by explaining to her son that the reason the figure depicted on the mudflaps is a 36D is that women who have the kind of figure depicted on the mudflaps are regarded as beautiful by many men, and that the guy driving the truck enjoys looking at figures of women with large breasts. She could proceed from there by explaining that while beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the beauty of some women is in the eye of a vast majority of beholders. This helps to explain the popularity of the mudflaps. She might go on to discuss the lack of marketability in the concept of fat women on mudflaps, or the flat-chested. She could then conclude the explanation that has eluded her thus far by pointing out that people are entitled to choose the kinds of people they are attracted to, are entitled to choose the mudflaps they place on their vehicles and are therefore entitled to choose mudflaps featuring images of the kinds of people they are attracted to. Should there be any disagreement on this last point, she may want to utilise the option of taking a large, wet fish, slapping her son hard up the face with it and telling him to mind his own bloody business.

But she probably wouldn’t do that.

Why do post-feminist, liberal female politicians have such a hard time with the fact that a majority of men are attracted to women with these qualities? Many women who would object to something like this look like they’ve seen the hard end of an ugly stick, so I was surprised to find that Ulmer is a fairly nice looking lady. She’s also an Independent Beauty Consultant for Mary Kay Cosmetics! So the threat that women like her perceive from a culture that has a physical ‘ideal’ is very perplexing. I’m sure that finding a mate wasn’t a hard thing for her to achieve. So why all the hate? Why the fairy tales about conversations with her son on the topic of women’s breasts on mudflaps?

I believe that the kinds of people who want to ban mudflaps are the kinds of people who like to micromanage everything. If it’s so hard for Ulmer to see people being individuals with regard to their choice of mudflaps, it must be almost impossible for her to see women being popular for physical attributes, or women being less popular for the lack of them. Taking account of how a woman looks is not sexism, and neither is celebrating the resulting preference in a mudflap, regardless of how Ulmer wishes to spin it. This, in fact, highlights perhaps one of the greatest failures of feminism: to preserve a sense of perspective in equality which adequately acknowledges the role of individual partiality and the sovereignty of individual choice in such matters.

In fact nothing about this proposed law encompassed the ideals of liberty. It was a collective damnation of individual preference, followed by a collective condemnation of the expression of that preference, culminating in the collective prohibition of that expression. I’m happy to tell you that, of 14,000 votes so far on an NBC poll, 63 percent of them disagreed that splash guards with “images that are obscene or hateful” should be illegal. A testament, I think to the sense of freedom that most Americans desire from government in with regard to their personal choices.

Someone, please tell Theresa Ulmer’s son that neither his mother nor him have anything to fear from sexy mudflaps.

John Wright

UPDATE: February 21st, 2007
The following reply was received from Theresa Ulmer.

“Mr. Wright, First, you have no right to bring my son (an innocent person) into this debate. Place the target on me, as I am the one who made the comments. Second, the item you are referring to was a joke, as I followed with saying: seriously…. You obviously missed the point and took this whole issue out of context. There was no doubt the amendment would not pass. The point (due to other things taking place that week) needed to be made that not just one party has the coin on ‘family values’. That point was clearly made. Thank you and I hope in the future we can discuss important issues. Sincerely, Representative Theresa Ulmer.”