Wednesday, April 23, 2008

FLDS - Four Layers During Summer

FLDS Compound Eldorado TexasUp until right now, I have successfully managed to just pipe down about Camp FLDS over there in Eldorado, Texas. (Eldorado would appear to be just outside of Polygamyville and a bit to the west of Pedophile-burbia.) However, I am now unsuccessful in keeping quiet on the whole ordeal because there's no way I can pass this up "Polygamist Wives' Fashion is a Statement." Oh, it's a statement all right. Let's see what it says, shall we?

The "fashion" of the FLDS women looks sort of like a cross between a 6-year old girl on Easter Sunday in 1958 and that of very pastel-y "Little House on the Prairie" garb. It IS a statement. It is NOT stating that is is fashionable. Behold! FLDS Women
FLDS Women

Now, I took one look at that and the first thing I thought was, "Oh, my God. It's 1862. My time machine works!" Please note, they do not look happy to be dressed like that. They probably don't look happy in general, but neither would I if I had to wear a lilac-colored frock whilst old men on the compound were waiting to sex me up after I turned 14 and they married me. But that's just me.

FLDS WomenIt's not just the colors that I have a problem with. It's the whole ensemble that I find disturbing. (Not as disturbing as the entire premise of the FLDS cult-like community-compound, but disturbing, nonetheless.) The style of the clothing worn by these poor brainwashed women is a combination of the styles seen in the early 19th century and that of the 1950s clothing that the church assimilated into their practices. The combining of the two styles seemed to occur "when the church took a conservative turn." (I am more than a little curious to know what the church was like before the "conservative" card was played. I mean, how un-conservative could they possibly have been? What? Did they let sunlight beam down upon their wrists on occasion?)

That fascinating bit of apparel trivia was according to Janet Bennion who uses her schooling in Yet more FLDS Womenanthropology to study polygamist women. (For some reason, I find that amusing. I can almost hear the voice-overs on The Discovery Channel. "Here we are on the outskirts of a compound where the elusive FLDS polygamist woman is rumored to live. We'll stay crouched over here behind this rock and hopefully some of them will emerge. It is through the diligent observation of the polygamist women that we will learn more about their species and will be able to answer questions such as "What is their habitat?" "What do they eat?" "What do they feed their young?")

Surprise! FLDS WomenContinuing with my reasons that no one should follow this practice at all is the part where anyone who is a member of this polygamist sect, including very small children, is to wear the long white cotton or polyester underwear that covers from their neck all the way down to their ankles. The Jesus Jammies are styled after the original temple garments of Joseph Smith (the founder of the regular LDS Church.)So they're basically sheathed from neck to toe in either cotton or polyester. All the time. Every day. All year-round. (And it sounds just torturous to me.)

Oh, but they're not done getting dressed yet! Now that they are clad from their neck all the way And again, FLDS Womendown to their ankles in this underwear, they are supposed to disguise the underwear with at least three layers of clothing on top of that. (You know how I "disguise" my underwear? That's right, I put on some pants. Not three layers of pants. Just one pair of pants. But, then again, I'm not covered in underwear from head to toe, either. But I still like my method better.)

Three layers of nylons are to cover the women's legs. And then they have the polyester frock on top of that! (The frock color choices are limited to the pastel line because "the spirit of God cannot reside in anything colorful". Also, "the spirit of God" cannot reside in anything that is black, anything with a print or anything that is red, as red is reserved for Christ to reside in. So you're looking at between 4 to 5 layers of clothing from your neck to your ankles all the time. Do you have any idea what the average temperature is over there in Eldorado? From June through August, the average temperature is 92 really freaking hot degrees! (I don't recall a whole lot of "Thou shalt sweat like a roasted swine 24/7" in the Bible. And although I don't have a very in depth knowledge of the Bible's content overall, I'm pretty sure I'd remember hearing something about that.)

MORE FLDS Women?The women's dresses are meant to show modesty and conformity, which is why they must make sure every inch of skin that could be considered "provocative" is covered. Congratulations, ladies. Modesty? Oh, that garb is modest all right. Conformity? Sadly, it definitely sends the message that you all are conforming over there. John Llewellyn, who is a retired Salt Lake County Sheriff's lieutenant and a polygamy expert, says that the other reason the women are covering themselves is "so that they're unattractive to the outside world or other men." And again, congratulations, ladies. You've made yourself unattractive to other men AND other women as well! Nice job!

Janet Binnion also says that the women's clothing is stitched with special markings which "protect the body and to remind you of you commitment." Protect the body? Probably only if they fell down. They're wearing so many layers, they wouldn't feel a thing! And it would be difficult not to be reminded that you should have yourself committed for wearing 4 layers of cotton and polyester in the middle of the summer.

Still MORE FLDS WomenAnd what better way to compliment your polygamist woman look that you're striving for than with a hairstyle that screams "I'm crazy!" just as loudly as the rest of your wardrobe does. The polygamist women never cut their hair. No, it's not so they can swaddle themselves in their own hair to cover up their underwear suit. It because when the Second Coming rolls around, they will use their hair to wash Christ's feet. Wait. What?

Wash his FEET?! With their hair!? OK, I'm starting to think that someone is just making this stuff up. And I'd almost believe that were the case if I hadn't seen all of the pictures of these long haired, over dressed, prairie women milling about Texas. They take this hair thing pretty seriously, too. Since there is a quote in the Bible that says that a woman's hair should be her crowning glory (and they don't look like they have a whole lot going on over there that would qualify as "glorious" and that would include the hair), the women have come up with what "crowning glory" looks like. Behold! Crowning glory.

Wow FLDS Woman and Her HairIn case you're dying to try this at your next neighborhood polygamist Tupperware party or other festive get together, the bangs are grown out and then they are rolled. Don't be whipping out that curling iron to roll them, though! That's just too modern. The sides of the hair are done in what are called "sausage curls" (a style developed by the wife of Jimmy Dean. Yes, that is correct.) and then the back of the hair is braided. The higher that the "sausage curl" sits above the forehead, the more righteous the woman. The younger women seem to go with a more Elvis-y kind of pompadour look, which clearly strives for the "righteousness" of the elder brainwashed women. And just so you know, the only time you'll be letting that hair down in when it's your turn to go through the turnstile and spend a little time in the sack with your husband. Other than that, you shall always be sporting the self-righteous, sausage-y goodness, poofy, bun-like do on your head. Lucky you.

See what I mean? This is just bizarre on way too many levels. Multiple wives. Polygamist compounds. Several layers of thick clothing all the time. And the heat! My God, the heat! It's all a bit much if you're asking me. But I saved the "crowning glory", if you will, of the imprisoned and brainwashed polygamist wife look for last. To get it to all come together for the full effect that you're going for here, you need to remember two words. Don't tweeze.


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Anonymous said...

it seems like you hate anyone who doesn't conform to YOUR standards. Similar modesty requirements are found in a variety of religions, like Islam and Judaism. Do you make fun of the Amish too?
Yes, the FLDS are very different, and to an ignorant, ethnocentric blogger, the fashions of the women are "weird". It's a different culture. Get over it.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for bringing a bit of humor to a very sad situation. FLDS is many generations of women being born into a cult that controls them. As one woman who escaped said, she had to "work her way up to low self esteem" after she left the cult.

Michael said...

Uh-oh. Looks like you've hurt the feelings of Religious Nutcake #1. lol.

Anonymous said...

OOOH! ME! ME ME! I MAKE FUN OF THE AMISH!! they are the most horrifying excuses for humans known to man. i cannot think of a worse cult. parading around as far more pious than 'regular folk,' yet abusive to women, children AND animals. THEY ARE REVOLTING HUMANS. google 'puppy mills.' EW, YUCK.

Anonymous said...

Your head is so far up your ass that im supprized you can spell, i think it would do you good to pull your head out and get some fresh air.

Anonymous said...

I agree with number1 .. You cannot think that others do not appreciate what they are trying to do Live a Christ-like life, I am part of a conservative group(no, not the Amish or Flds) but I know Amish people, they are actually very sweet, people. Do not believe everything you read. i appreciate the stand the Flds takes on modesty and being seperate from the world's fashions, I'd rather follow Jesus and be covered up that half or more naked , the way the world dresses.

Mare said...

Hey, Last Anonymous.

I absolutely appreciate a stand on modesty. Seeing women (and men) parading around half-naked or mostly naked is unacceptable to me. Granted, it can be quite enjoyable, but it's mostly unacceptable.

What I have an issue with is mainly how the women are controlled by the men into thinking that this is how they are supposed to be. They are controlled. They say it's a choice, but is it really when they are limited to a choice of ONE thing? I'm not so sure that it is.

Oh, and Anonymous Number Four? Since you seem so concerned with spelling, I thought that I'd point out that it's "suprised". Stay in school!

Thanks for reading! Whoever you all are!

~ Mare

Anonymous said...

Actually, Mare, it's "surprised." : ) If the women voluntarily chose to dress this way it would be one thing, but to be to told the HAVE to by their male leaders is another.

Mare said...

Hello, most recent Anonymous.

Oh, I am not happy I made that error. Ugh. But thanks for pointing it out to me.

And I agree that it's not much of a choice for those women. The men seem to really enjoy them like that and they, oddly, comply. Go figure.

Thanks for reading!

~ Mary

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