Thursday, July 19, 2007

Bathing Suit or Potato Sack?

It's no surprise that many fundamentalists find currently fashionable women's swimsuits, even the most conservative styles, to be unacceptably immodest. In reaction to this, some have come up with their own styles, which they consider to be properly "modest" beach wear.

Yes, these are supposed to be bathing suits. They expect women to SWIM while wearing all this cloth. These suits are modest all right -- they'd fit right in on the beach of 1897. But in 2007, they're bug-ugly as hell; the potato sack of swimsuits. And I would imagine they'd get waterlogged in short order, dragging the wearer down.

In contrast, the following suits from the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s are quite modest compared to today's suits, but are positively racy compared to the fundamentalist "burkinis" above. I've got a picture of my mother at around 18 wearing a suit very much like the yellow one below.

1920s suit

1930s suit

1940s suit

I find it both hilarious and absurd when a bathing suit my grandmother might have worn in the 1920s and one my mother would have worn in the 1940s would be considered "immodest" by fundamentalists today. Surely, anyone with any sense would realize that a more modest alternative to a thong bikini need not be a "burkini".

One of the stated goals of the company that sells these monstrosities, "Wholesome Wear", was to create a suit where undue attention would not be paid to the body, that their suits would "highlight the face, not the body". But anyone showing up at a beach in one of these getups is guaranteed to get a LOT of unwanted attention -- they might as well show up in a Civil War hoopskirt. They'll get MORE attention, not less, which defeats their stated goal. But I suppose they believe that being laughed at is preferable to being lusted after, who knows?


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