LOS ANGELES — Walmart stores will no longer offer Cosmopolitan in their checkout lines.
In recent years, Walmart has been displaying the magazine in checkout lines but putting blinder wrappers over the cover.
But now the National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) has pushed Walmart to remove the magazine from the checkout area altogether after advocating for tougher enforcement of the blinder policy.
The NCOSE, an anti-pornography advocacy group formally known as Morality in Media, called the removal a “victory” on its website.
“That’s over 5,000 stores where families and individuals will no longer be automatically exposed to Cosmo’s hypersexualized and degrading article titles that regularly promote pornography, sexting, BDSM, group sex, anal sex, and more, all while marketing toward young teens with Disney star cover models,” the NCOSE said.
Today, the Free Speech Coalition said that the retail chain, with its wide diversity of customers globally, should use better judgment than give into one-sided, faith-based arguments. Further, the FSC said, Walmart’s top executives shouldn’t be targeting “women’s sexuality.”
“It's shocking is to see a company like Walmart cave to the demands of religious extremists,” said Mike Stabile, the FSC’s communication director. “When we see religious conservatives say they're coming for porn, what they're really coming for is women's sexuality.
“Cosmopolitan doesn't have any explicit photos, or even nudity. Nobody is requiring any one to open the magazine. It's the ideas contained in it that the religious right finds dangerous,” Stabile told XBIZ.
“They couch their concern in public health language, with hand-wringing about ‘risky’ sex acts promoted in the magazine, and #metoo. In that, they've picked an odd target,” he said.
“For nearly a half-century, Cosmopolitan has been at the forefront of frank discussions about safer sex, consent, and assault. Why go after Cosmo, and not Maxim? Because empowered women are more threatening to conservative morality than sexually active men.”
NCOSE recently released its hit list of companies that should be targeted this year. The list, the NCOSE said, aims to “shame mainstream facilitators of sexual exploitation.”
Its “2018 Dirty Dozen List” includes HBO, Snapchat, Backpage.com, Amazon, IBooks, Poster Boys, Comcast, Steam, Twitter, YouTube, EBSCO and Roku.