Republished from the Press and Journal
Brothers and sisters, it’s good to be on the side of progress in 2015.
Today in America, marriage is no longer considered a conjugal bond to rear children. The rich and middle-class must pay for the health care of the poor. Across the land, restrooms and locker room are being opened to all genders regardless of biology. The last vestiges of the Antebellum South – including the Confederate Flag – are being removed from public life.
Yes, it’s a good era in which to be liberal.
There is no doubt history will judge us correct in our struggle against the patriarchal reactionary forces that wish to keep us shackled in the 19th century. After all, our side represents progress and equality for all!
Unfortunately, a new front has emerged in our war of equaling. It is located in the western part of Pennsylvania, our great progressive state. A barbershop run by a burly, misogynistic poor excuse for a citizen is refusing to cut women’s hair. The barber, John Interval of Washington County, was rightfully fined $750 by the state’s Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs after a comrade-in-arms informed on him.
To make matters worse, Mr. Interval – who, of course, identifies as a male – is recalcitrant about the charges. He told a local CBS affiliate, “You know, I’m not opposed to doing women’s hair. Just not in this shop. I don’t even have [the equipment] to do women’s hair.” Interval even had the gall to assert that he doesn’t consider his behavior “a discrimination thing” but only wants to run a “barbershop…for guys.”
These flimsy excuses are no better than the arguments Christian southerners used against miscegenation. If we as a society find it acceptable to outlaw the right of association, then we cannot be lenient on Mr. Interval. The full force of our anti-discrimination laws should fall upon the door of his establishment, shutting down his business if necessary.
But why should we stop there? Already, our lax means of enforcement allowed one man to disbar women from getting their hair cut while sipping on a Coors Light and discussing the Steelers’ prospects for the football season. We mustn’t allow instances like this to ever come about again.
Radical behavior calls for radical amends, and I think I have the solution to inequity in barbery.
We already agree that a new progressive age is dawning before us. Therefore, I have a few modest proposals for the knuckle-draggers in Harrisburg who see no hurry in punishing discriminatory behavior.
I implore the reader to not conflate my recommendations with Jonathan Swift’s proposition to sell poor children to the rich as a form of food. In our visionary era, there is no need for humor or silliness. My schemes are of the utmost seriousness.
The lawmakers in Harrisburg need to get off their sorry rear ends and pass a bill putting an end to the difference in hair styles between both the races and sexes.
That’s right: If all men (and women!) are created equal, then all hair must be created equal, too. It can’t be any other way.
For a moment, let your heart feel for the young, impressionable girl who dreams of having blonde hair to fit in. Or think of the teenage boy who can’t get his Alfafa spike to stay put. Or consider the black female whose unkempt hair causes endless delays in her morning routine.
That can all end. If we have the political will, our collective head of hair can be universally good. No differentiation. No inequality in length, style, fineness, or color. We can all be as one people and as one hair.
When all Pennsylvanians have the same hair, justice will truly be served. We’ll end the uncomfortable feelings that arise from jealously over hairstyles. And we’ll put the kibosh on sexist barber shops that only serve one gender.
The human race is entitled to access to all things, all the time, no matter the price. Notions of privacy, property, camaraderie or inclusiveness are just bigotry in disguise. They shouldn’t be tolerated.
Of course, we’ll need a panel of hair experts to determine what is the appropriate style for men and women. Barbers and hairdressers from all across Pennsylvania will need to be consulted. With a project this big, there can be no room for error. Professionals must be in charge.
And for a short time, our enlightened despots – I mean, expert trichologists – will need to test various styles on a close set of associates. Equality will come, but for a short period some must be more equal in hair than others. So be rest assured that we will all share the same mane in the end.
I know there are some good liberals out there who demand justice be served now. Every day we wait for the great levelling of hair is a day of oppression.
Hear me when I say that I wish it could be different. But our government, our great deliverer from injustice, works in a slow fashion. It was set up by men who distrusted the passions of the people they represent. Their folly still affects us to this day, and we must be persistent in our efforts in order to bring about real change for the better.
The men, women, and non-sexual binary identifiers who fought for all the progress we see today never gave up. They kept pushing until we saw a progressive income tax, government health care for the poor and elderly, the outlawing of discrimination and same-sex marriage.
Our fight for equal hair carries on the rich tradition of egalitarianism of our forebears. Their struggle brought us to this day, and we must not, under any circumstances, stop fighting for the future. Natural differences in man are something that can be conquered. We must let indignation and resentment fuel our cause for a more perfect union in hair!
To paraphrase the great French philosopher Diderot, men will never be free until the last male-only barber is strangled with the entrails of the last conservative.
We cannot be happy until we’re all equal. That is our everlasting creed. And if some must be forced into equality, so be it. That’s the price we must all pay for justice.
Off with their hair!