People are sounding off on Facebook because the city of Lakeland, Fla., put up a statue of the leg lamp in A Christmas Story, saying that it’s “sexist” and “sick” and that it’s going to hurt the children just by being in the park.
“I’ve never like the objectifying of a womens [sic] body part,” a Facebook user named “Natalie Joy” commented.
“Oh no, that is sick,” Karen McClure Walters added. “If that’s for real I’m embarrassed to live in Lakeland.”
Another Lakeland resident, Kimberly Williams (who apparently really loves to use exclamation marks to emphasize her points), went so far as to suggest that the very presence of the statue is going to destroy innocent children:
Lakeland has gone to [sic] far!!!! Take it down!!!!!! Hideous. What kind of example r y’all setting for kids!!!! Come on . . . And y’all wonder why kids are the way they are just look at what you put out!!! City of Lakeland grow up!!!!
Williams’s comment got five likes, suggesting that at least five other people are concerned about children living in a place where there’s a statue of a leg. One of those like-ers, Paula Perkins Geiger, added a comment, claiming that the statue was “promoting sex for our children” and asking the town’s sheriff to “think about it” given how many “preditors [sic] are around.”
(At the time of publication, the sheriff had yet to weigh in on the issue.)
Although Lakeland has not announced formally whether or not it plans to tear down the statue in the name of child welfare, its calm comments in response to the complaints seem to suggest that the statue will stay.
“Sorry to hear that you feel this way,” the city’s account stated. “This was chosen from a panel of judges and is based on the iconic “leg lamp” from the 1983 film, A Christmas Story.”
Now, to be fair, most people were actually pretty happy about the statue. As Heat Street noted, the town’s local news affiliate, Channel 8, did a segment asking residents for their thoughts on the artwork and couldn’t find anyone upset by it. But the thing is, the fact that there was enough controversy for Channel 8 to even do a segment called “Lakeland ‘leg lamp’ sculpture creating controversy” in the first place is absurd enough in itself.
After all, we are talking about a leg. A leg. Honestly, if you are getting that angry about a fake leg, then I am actually kind of jealous of you, because you must not have any real problems in your real life to worry about. Believe it or not, there have actually been no studies that show a link between looking at objects from A Christmas Story and sexual assault, and you should probably take a few breaths and calm down a little.
– Katherine Timpf is a reporter for National Review.