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VIDEO: Protesters march on home of man who criticized yoga pants (seriously)

VIDEO: Protesters march on home of man who criticized yoga pants (seriously)

Rhode Island man also received death threats after tongue-in-cheek Letter to the Editor in local paper

Alan Sorrentino wrote a Letter to the Editor of his local newspaper, the Barrington Times in Barrington, Rhode Island.

It was a letter, accordingly to Sorrentino, intended to be tongue-in-cheek, somewhat humorous in intent, critical of women wearing yoga pants outside the yoga studio (and men in Speedos).

Little did Sorrentino realize that not everyone appreciated or understand his sense of humor, particularly some women who took offense to his yoga pants comments.

And therein started what is one of the most bizarre stories I’ve seen, in which Sorrentino became so vilified that it resulted in death threats and a protest called a “Yoga Pants Parade” attended by hundreds of people who marched past his house in protest as police stood watch.

We told the background of the story in my prior post, New object of hate: Guy who complained about older women in Yoga pants.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZI_v2JC_NIQ

The short version is that Sorrentino joked in his Letter about women, particularly women over 20 or who are not in great shape, wearing yoga pants outside the gym. He also compared what he deemed unsightly images to men who would wear speedos around town, to which he said “yuck.”

And then all hell broke loose. About the yoga pants comments, not the Speedo comment.

Some local women took offense to the Letter as an example of body shaming, and an attempt to deprive women of the right to wear what they want.

Nothing in Sorrentino’s letter, however, attempted to deprive anyone of any rights — he simply expressed his fashion outrage at women on whom tight-fitting yoga pants are not — in his estimation — attractive. No one seemed to object to his comment in the Letter about men and Speedos.

yoga-pants-protest-im-not-sorry-about-your-fragile-masculinity

Many people responded with contrary letters to the editors, but then the controversy spread far and wide on the internet. Then came the profane and threatening voice messages and death threats.

Local women began to organize a protest march directed at Sorrentino. The Facebook posts were foul and angry, as detailed in my prior post. They also took the Barrington Times to task, demanding that such letters not be published in the future.

In the heat of the anger, a Facebook event page mapped out the route for the protest. And that route took the marchers right past Sorrentino’s house. By the morning of the protest, Sunday, October 23, 2016, almost 500 people had signed up for the march to Sorrentino’s house.

Given that Sorrentino was the object of an internet rage, Sorrentino was concerned.

I met Sorrentino outside his house that morning, just a few hours before the planned march. He didn’t want to be videotaped, but he was more than willing to speak with me.

Sorrentino expressed his disbelief how his letter had been taken out of context, because he considered it obvious that the letter complaining about yoga pants (and Speedos) was at least partially in jest. He felt that the protest march was disproportionate to any alleged offense, and he was fearful since he had received death threats.

The march on his house was over the line, Sorrentino said. The publicity and threats had disrupted his family life, and made it more difficult to care for an elderly person for whom he is a caretaker. The planned march to his house by hundreds of protesters added to that stress and fear.

While I was there, Sorrentino was hanging a peace sign on the front of his house, and later I noticed he added a “Free Speech” banner.

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I attended the protest march.

There were about 300 people in attendance, maybe more. The organizers and others insisted that they weren’t marching “to” Sorrentino’s house, just “past” his house. That seemed like a meaningless distinction but it was one I heard repeated over and over by different people, as if that were the planned talking point.

No one could answer the question of why that route was taken, why it was necessary of all the streets in Barrington to march on Sorrentino’s street and to or past his house, if the intent was not to intimidate him.

While the protest was completely peaceful, police were on hand outside Sorrentino’s house to prevent any trouble.

There were markings chalked on the street by organizers designating the space right in front of Sorrentino’s house a “quiet zone.” That was ignored. As the marchers passed in front many stopped to take photos, to comment on the signage on the house, sometimes in a noisy fashion.

I don’t know if Sorrentino was home as the protest passed by, but someone was home. The door slightly opened then shut quickly when a local news reporter tried to speak to someone in the house.

On the surface the protest had a non-hostile and festive appearance. Emphasizing a positive image appears to have been a conscious decision by the organizers after the initial internet rage and threats garnered negative publicity for the protest.

The news coverage of the event focused on that superficial side of the event, playing on the theme of women’s empowerment. Yet there was a negative side that doesn’t fit that narrative. This story is just as much if not more about how mob rule on the internet and locally was used to try to silence someone through fear and intimidation.

Make no mistake, the anger was there, barely below the surface.

yoga-pants-protest-my-anger-is-positive

My interviews with participants revealed that Sorrentino had become the object onto which the women projected their rage unrelated to Sorrentino himself. In fact, many women kept emphasizing that the protest really wasn’t about Sorrentino, even if he was the object.

Mistreatment of women by society, body shaming and expectations place upon women, sexual assault and objectification of women, whatever issues women have had in their lives — all of that was dumped onto Sorrentino.

The event was other-worldly — a protest unlike anything seen before in sleepy Barrington, all over a Letter to the Editor about yoga pants. Lost in the fury was the Speedo comment Sorrentino also made. I can’t believe no one was angry about that male body shaming (psst, that’s a joke, for the humorless among us).

Here is some of the video I took:

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Comments

A first world problem…

UnCivilServant | October 24, 2016 at 8:55 am

Letters to the Editor are still a thing? Was this an actual analog newspaper?

Lets say Sorrentino was a gay/muslim/transgender activities who had written to his local editor complaining about males doing things he doesn’t like.

Can you begin to imagine the outcry on the left if someone organised HUNDREDS of people to walk past his house in protest at what he had said?

I guarantee you the mfm would be out in full force going on about how the poor gay guy is being intimidated by intolerant anti-gay bigots.

But no, because this guy is just a “normal” person everyone thinks this is just good fun.

Mailman

    Milwaukee in reply to mailman. | October 24, 2016 at 10:46 am

    “Lets say Sorrentino was a gay/muslim/transgender activities who had written to his local editor complaining about males doing things he doesn’t like.”

    No, let’s note that other news sources indicate he is gay.

    Which means he is not interested in women enough to have learned that there are some places you don’t go because too many women are batshit crazy. Why did we give these people the vote?

    Because he is gay, he has offended all women by rejecting them for men. Even though he is right, not all body shapes lend themselves to spandex, they don’t want to hear it.

    This is bullying, plain and simple.

    I have seen women wearing spandex pants and revealing way too much, and I wonder what they are thinking.

    Years ago, there was a cartoon of a a female patient facing the plastic surgeon. He had obviously just asked her how big she wanted her new boobs, and her reply was “Big enough to yell at men when they notice them.”

      mailman in reply to Milwaukee. | October 25, 2016 at 4:08 am

      You can be the right kind of gay and the wrong kind of gay. The left doesn’t care when it is being all outrageously outragety. The only thing that matters is that its point of view is not challenged.

35 deg here this morning, should have done the yoga pants march here.
would have been fun to see the jiggling from the shivering.

thalesofmiletus | October 24, 2016 at 9:03 am

“15 minutes of fame” or “2 minutes of hate”?

I wonder how many women who identify as conservative were in that parade?

Oh yeah, none. They were probably still laughing at the original letter, and laughing even harder at the response.

Some of those sumos should listen and learn.

As a sense of victimhood rises, it chokes out a sense of humor.

Well, and dignity…

“Mistreatment of women by society, body shaming and expectations place upon women, sexual assault and objectification of women, whatever issues women have had in their lives — all of that was dumped onto Sorrentino.”

Shouldn’t they have been in front a mosque?

I have not yet viewed the video.
Hopefully you have a lot of shots of these women in their yoga pants.
I hope a bunch of guys download the video, and decide dub the video with play by play of “locker room talk” and then repost it to youtube.

What is wrong with these women? Seriously, they are offended that a letter to the editor says that some women shouldn’t wear yoga pants. Really? Because some women shouldn’t.

MaggotAtBroadAndWall | October 24, 2016 at 9:42 am

Sorta surprised nobody had drawn the analogy to the Klan. (I suspect Prof J sees it, but he’s too classy to draw attention to it).

Klansmen would put on special clothing, form a mob, then go terrorize people they didn’t like.

Yoga pants and radical feminists = white robes and hoods and racists.

    Lot of analogies … too obvious to mention, perhaps. The most blatant may be all those silly protesters carrying on about their “passion”, as if that’s a justification for their moronitude and their attempts to suppress thoughts which aren’t blessed with their approval.

    The Schutzstaffel (a.k.a. “SS”) was for otherwise pedestrian NSDAP members who had a bit more “passion” … obviously, not a good thing.

Some people just have too much time on their hands.

I’m lookin’ at you protesters.

This morning I sent a letter to the editor saying women shouldn’t wear super skimpy bikinis. I included my home address.

casualobserver | October 24, 2016 at 10:06 am

Why do this? Because you are GUARANTEED to get media attention.

They’re talking about their “right to wear what they want”.
Nobody is preventing them from wearing what they want!
The guy just expressed an opinion. He did not “infringe” anybody’s “rights” and he did not persecute or intimidate anybody. He did not disrupt anybody’s life and his did not target anyone in particular.
This march, on the contrary, was organized to punish him by intimidation and public shaming. He was targeted. His life was intentionally affected by death threats and mob bullying.

By the way, I assume that the organizer is the one that appears in the video with the bullhorn. She should not wear yoga pants in public.

    Exiliado in reply to Exiliado. | October 24, 2016 at 11:09 am

    And I was also thinking…
    It must be really, really awkward to be married to this lady and to have to tell her:
    “But Honey, they just don’t look good on you.”

    I pity the fool.

      Milwaukee in reply to Exiliado. | October 24, 2016 at 11:44 am

      That’s the joke. When the woman says “Do these pants make my butt look fat?” Reply with, “No, your butt makes those pants look fat.”

      Why do women ask their men folk to comment on their looks when all they want is a compliment?

The yoga pants protest may be a way for women who would dearly love to do something oh-so-edgy … like those pointlessly bizarre nude protests the press keeps insisting on telling us about … only not quite that edgy.

This “body shaming” notion is being used for another purpose: to encourage young women to wear unprofessional clothing and makeup in the workplace. I can understand yoga pants at the grocery store after class, although I would highly recommend a shirt long enough to cover one’s butt, but for for work, flip-flops, bra straps and gaping blouses remain slovenly.

A woman who dresses properly and appropriately for a given workplace will stand out as being savvy and professional. This can be as simple as wearing a shirt that fits over jeans and steel-toed shoes.

And, if some guy is clueless enough to remark about a young woman’s makeup, that is a sure sign that the makeup job was botched.

Mr. Sorrentino ain’t wrong.

Let she who has never said something like “omigawd, can you believe what Cindy is wearing, that is *not* a flattering look on her…” cast the first stone by marching.

*tumbleweeds in the street*

The steady decline of man commenced when he invented the dishwasher.

legacyrepublican | October 24, 2016 at 1:27 pm

By the morning of the protest, Sunday, December 23, 2016, almost 500 people had signed up for the march to Sorrentino’s house.

Alright Prof Jacobson, whose been playing with their new toy time machine?!

The real truth is, yoga pants are bad for women’s health.

On the surface, they are supremely utilitarian: They are flexible, and they are modest and out of the way during exercise. I wear them several times a week, to go to yoga class (of course) and also to lift weights. But, they are eeeeevil when a woman decides to wear them elsewhere.

Appearances aside, women who wear yoga pants in public say they do so because they are “comfortable.” What does that mean?

It means the woman is too fat to fit comfortably in her normal pants.

A few years ago, my sister-in-law was all enthusiastic about a variant on yoga pants, jeggings. They sort of looked like jeans, but stretched like panty hose. “They are so comfortable!” she said, as she pinched a bit of fabric and pulled it away from her leg. This was when I was getting rid of some post-pregnancy weight, and I said to myself, “No way. If I get something like that, I will never get the weight off.”

I got rid of the weight, she did not.

Normal pants will let you know when your calories are drifting up, and remind you to course-correct. Yoga pants will just let you eat more.

Henry Hawkins | October 24, 2016 at 4:39 pm

Her: “Have I got the butt of a twenty year old or what?!”

Him: “A twenty year old Buick, maybe.”

Imagine what skewed priorities and superficial lives these people must have to feel that this man’s letter warrants an all-out display of anger.

A reply letter to the editor saying they didn’t want to see fat men strolling around in Speedo’s would have sufficed.

JackRussellTerrierist | October 26, 2016 at 7:49 pm

It doesn’t matter how good a shape a woman has. There’s this thing called feminine dignity, and it cannot be had strutting around grocery stores, the dentist’s office, the bank or shopping malls basically nude. If they want to flaunt it, go to a beach or a pool with a skimpy swimsuit or wear a sexy dress to a nightclub. We just don’t need to see it as we go about our daily responsibilities.

I suspect these cows were dumped for a younger, or, at least thinner, or, prettier, or, at the very least, less psycho member of the female sex. These kind of women live with their two cats and 95% of their activities are with other women. They’re boring, yakety, and falsely cheerful. They probably seized on this as a way to get some attention and feel some power. In this case, it was power over some old gay dude who didn’t mean anything untoward. But that’s irrelevant when these kinds of woman see a chance to vent their spleens.

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