A colleague (I won't reveal his name) was up late last night watching "Thelma and Louise" on Lifetime. During a commerical break, an ad for Trojan's Vibrating Touch fingertip massager for women came on. Naturally, my colleague's journalistic curiosity was piqued and he rushed to the website mentioned for more info. (Hey, in these final stressful days of the campaign, a man's gotta do what he's gotta do to stay distracted.)

Reading the Vibrating Touch blog (this just gets better and better, doesn't it?) he noticed complaints from women living in Texas that they were unable to purchase the product. Probing further, he discovered that the sale of Vibrating Touch is prohibited in a number of states: Alabama, Colorado, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, and Virginia. And apparently, the folks at Trojan have received their share of disappointed emails from frustrated women in these states, because, on the Vibrating Touch FAQ page, one can find this exchange:

Q. I can’t purchase the Trojan Her Pleasure Vibrating Touch fingertip massager in my state.  Why?
A. We’re sorry, but some states prohibit the sale of products such as these.
These states are Alabama, Colorado, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas and Virginia.

Wow. How sad is that? In these stressful times, how cruel must a state be to refuse its female residents  "products such as these"?

But, alas, it's true. As I promised my righteously outraged and perplexed colleague, I did a quick Google search on the matter and pulled up random episodes from the frontlines of sexual repression, including this strange tale of law enforcement run amok, in which a former fifth grade teacher and mother of three was busted in Texas for selling a vibrator to undercover cops posing as a "dysfunctional married couple in search of a sex aid." (Now there's a fine use of police resources.)

These are real laws, people--some of which have been tested and upheld in recent years, such as the Mississippi Supreme Court's 2004 decision not to overturn a state ban on the sale or distribution of “three-dimensional devices designed or marketed primarily for the stimulation of human genitalia.” As if life in Mississippi weren't hard enough. (And, yeah, I lived there for a time, so save your indignant hate mail.)

All I can say is, I know what I'm getting all my red-state friends and family for Christmas.

It seems blues really do have more fun.

--Michelle Cottle