Blog Post

Man Caught Filming Women in Target

Matthew Foerstel Matthew Foerstel

Commentary by Susan Brinkmann, OCDS

The 750,000 people who are boycotting Target stores for its misguided policy regarding transgender accommodation in its facilities are having an “I told you so” moment today as news breaks about a 26 year-old man from Missouri who was caught in 2015 filming women in a Target dressing room.

KMOV.com reported on the case of Matthew Foerstel of O’Fallon, Missouri, who was arrested on April 23 after allegedly holding a camera phone under a dressing room door while a female shopper was trying on bathing suits in a Brentwood Target.

This wasn't Foerstel’s first offense. In 2013 he was convicted of “knowing and intentionally” filming an 11 year-old girl inside a department store dressing room.

The crime could not have come to light at a worse time for Target stores. The retailer is struggling to defend its controversial policy which allows people to use whatever bathroom or dressing room corresponds with their perceived gender.

“Inclusivity is a core belief at Target. It’s something we celebrate,” the company said in a recent statement. “We stand for equality and equity, and strive to make our guests and team members feel accepted, respected and welcomed in our stores and workplaces every day.”

Unfortunately, the company forgot to accommodate those people who aren’t comfortable with sharing restrooms/dressing rooms with members of the opposite sex. Dismissing them all as “bigots” or “haters” just isn’t working this time as nearly one million people sign on to a boycott of the stores until they change their policy.

Thus far, the boycott, sponsored by the powerful American Family Association, is the most successful in the organization’s history.

Foerstel's crime flies in the face of liberal pundits who are making the disingenuous argument that transgenders are more likely to be attacked than to attack. This may be true, but it’s not the point. Most people are more worried about the perverts who will use the new rules to invade public dressing rooms and bathrooms. Mr. Foerstel’s crime, along with dozens of other similar incidents, proves that these fears are entirely warranted.

It also raises the question of how stores plan to enforce their “inclusive” bathroom policies. For instance, what is an employee supposed to do if he or she spots a man walking into a ladies’ room in the store? How is the employee supposed to know if he’s transgendered? Should the policy demand that all transgenders dress according to their perceived gender if they want to use facilities of the opposite sex? Or should they just allow anyone to use any bathroom and dressing room regardless of what they look like?

In other words, Target shoppers, you are at the mercy of the store’s employees, many of whom aren't making a career out of their job and could care less. Others may be too afraid of losing their job if they try to intercept a suspicious character.

Izzy and Tirsah Avraham Izzy and Tirzah Avraham

So unless Target wants to become the haunt of every pervert in town, they better start thinking about posting armed guards outside their restrooms. Which raises the question, are they really willing to go to these lengths just to make .03 percent of the population feel included?

These are precisely the kind of questions raised by a concerned parent named Izzy Avraham who took his 6 year-old daughter Tirzah to a Target store the other day. On the way to the store, he told her that some men think they’re women and wear dresses and makeup and want to use the ladies’ room instead of the men’s.

Her response? “That’s weird.”

“So we got to Target and introduced ourselves to the manager,” Avraham writes on his Facebook page. “I asked her on a practical level how Target's policy worked out if my six-year-old daughter walked into the women's restroom and someone with a biologically male body walked in behind her. She said Target has always had a policy of non-discrimination, and that if parents had concerns we could use the family rooms, or Tirzah could come in the men's washroom with me. I told her that as a concerned dad, I'm uncomfortable with Target's decision to allow people with male bodies in the women's washrooms. And that we think it's weird. We thanked her and left. I kept the whole conversation really polite and as relaxed as possible.”

Avraham sees a whole lot wrong with Target’s “inclusivity” announcement which says “Everyone deserves to feel like they belong . . . accepted, respected and welcomed at Target.”

“Really? Telling me you're ok with men walking into the bathroom behind my baby girl actually doesn't make me feel like I belong. It didn't make her feel like she belonged either, to hear the manager tell us that in person. Basically Target just told us - and millions of concerned parents - that we're no longer accepted, respected, and welcome in their stores.”

Needless to say, he joined the boycott too.

If you haven’t already done so, click here to let your voice be heard!

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