On Wednesday, former Wisconsin governor Scott Walker posted a picture of himself to Twitter, in which he’s wearing a snug pair of dark-wash jeans, hands resting proudly on his denim-clad hips, and a smile that says he absolutely loves the way those slacks fit. But Walker did not just post this picture for vanity purposes. No. Those form-fitting, bootcut jeans represent Walker’s first and only time advocating for women.
Denim Day is a campaign organized by the group Peace Over Violence, that came up with the idea for the day in the 1990s, after the Italian Supreme Court overturned a rape conviction because the victim was wearing tight jeans, and therefore (per the ruling) must have helped her attacker remove her pants, implying consent.
On their website, the Denim Day organizers ask that, on April 24, “community members, elected officials, businesses and students … make a social statement with their fashion statement by wearing jeans on this day as a visible means of protest against the misconceptions that surround sexual violence.”
It is certainly a worthwhile cause, but it’s a little hard to take Walker’s show of support for victims of sexual assault (who tend, overwhelmingly, to be women) seriously given, well, his entire career.
In 2015, for example, as governor of Wisconsin, he signed into a law a bill that banned abortions after 20 weeks, with no exceptions for cases of rape or incest. “I mean, I think for most people who are concerned about that [rape and incest], it’s in the initial months where they’re most concerned about it,” he explained on a local television station when pushing for the bill (it is unclear whether he was wearing jeans at the time). He also signed a law that required anyone seeking an abortion to undergo an ultrasound, and called the invasive procedure, “Just a cool thing out there.”
In addition, he defunded Planned Parenthood across Wisconsin, pushed for the elimination of a law that required insurance companies to cover contraceptives, repealed the state’s comprehensive sex-education law, and also repealed its equal pay law.
But, you know. Thanks for the pants!