A memo discussing how female hunters like to dress has caught fire for being “offensive” and “out of touch.”
Drew Born of Grand Rapids, MI, traveled to Lansing, MI, to attend a House Natural Resources Committee meeting and testify in support of a bill allowing hunters to wear pink in addition to orange, Detroit Free Press reported.
During the meeting for the bill, Born produced a two-page memo for the members of the committee that has since caused a stir.
Part of the memo read: “Women prefer to always look and feel attractive (even while hunting), having pink as an option can help with any insecurities over what they are wearing, pink is a color that can immediately identify a female, women don’t want to be mistaken for a man, even from a distance or in the woods.”
The memo was met with outrage from at least one lawmaker and several others on social media who found the sentiment to be insulting and sexist, Detroit Free Press reported.
“This has gone from silly to offensive. This memo is so out of touch,” Rep. Jeremy Moss, D-Southfield, said. “I don’t think a bunch of men need to tell women what they should wear to make themselves feel attractive while they’re out in the woods hunting.
“Women across the country realize that men should no longer be speaking for them, not only on their fashion sense, but on more pressing issues in the state,” Moss added. “This borders on the absurd.”
Dozens of people agreed with Moss and took to Twitter to express their – mostly sarcastic – feelings.
“For years men have wondered- what do women rly want? Pay equity? No. Access to healthcare?? Nah... just to feel cute while hunting,” one person said, the news site reported.
Comedian Chelsea Handler also got involved in the conversation by retweeting a picture of the memo with the caption, “Yes, women always love to pink. It’s the only color we love.”
Another on Twitter called the memo, “Straight from the 1950s.”
State Rep. Gary Howell, R-North Branch, and the chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee said of the memo, “I think it’s remarkably irrelevant to what we’re talking about. The only reason we’ve got this bill is for safety.
Though the memo has been attacked on social media, Born stands by it claiming that he only wants to ensure safety and to increase the number of women hunting in Michigan.
“This doesn’t have anything to do with whether this is a politically correct statement,” he said. “The whole reason to choose pink is for people to have a choice. I knew the moment that I phrased it as a women’s recruitment tool, it would be taken wrong.”
“Anything we can do to get women involved in hunting is worth it,” he added.
The idea of “hunter pink” apparel was brought up in a 2016 bill, which passed with the caveat that the Natural Resources Commission would do a study to ensure the color could easily be seen in the woods, even by those who are colorblind. The latter is a point a larger version of the 2018 memo makes, saying “some people are color blind to pink, some to orange, and some to both.”
In September, the Commission ruled that hunters’ must wear at least 50 percent blaze orange, and could wear pink if they wanted.
However, the bill was reintroduced this year in an attempt to give hunters more options.
“There is a lot of red, orange and yellow leaves that could blend into orange and that’s the most persuasive thing I heard,” Howell said. “I could care less who looks attractive or unattractive in whatever color they’re wearing.”
The committee didn’t vote on the bill, but is expected to consider it in the following week.