When is a Naughty Leopard neither Naughty nor a Leopard?

Naughty Leopard

I’m just now reading about the Walmart Naughty Leopard controversy although the story has been out for over a week.

Walmart made the costume, which is designed for toddler girls, available for Halloween and there was an immediate uproar about the sexualization of young girls. People simply heard the name of the costume and immediately began to send in furious letters of outrage. Stories sprang up on all the media outlets about the horror of this awful, dangerous, evil costume that was turning little girls into wild sexual animals.

Enough outraged people inundated Walmart with complaints that the company pulled the costume from the shelves and issued an apology.

What is wrong with the Naughty Leopard Costume?

Do you want to know my opinion on this nonsense? Of course you do!

The costume has a major problem but being too sexy isn’t one of them. It’s a cute little costume that is not sexy, is less revealing that outfits I see little girls wearing out and about all the time, and in no way turns little girls in sexual objects.

So, what’s do I find wrong with the costume? Leopards are yellow/gold with black spots. The costume is black with purple trim. Seriously? Naughty Leopard? I’d call it the Purple Crab costume except the cute little ears don’t quite work.

Naughty in this case is meant to convey a mischievous little girl. Anyone who actually bothered to examine the costume before expressing their horrified outrage would have immediately noted all of this.

Cancel Culture at Work

Walmart is a big-boy company and can make their own decisions but I find this absolutely ridiculous. Clearly someone at the company felt an apology was a cheaper and better solution than simply telling the outraged parents the truth. That the adults obviously jumped to an erroneous conclusions and that if they simply examined the costume in question they would find nothing objectionable about it. Walmart should be getting an apology from everyone who wrote in a complaint, not handing one out.

I haven’t even started talking about the free market yet. By golly, if people want to buy a costume then Walmart should sell it. It’s economics, it’s capitalism, it’s the free market that this country supposedly believes in. People need to mind their own business.

I guess it seems like a little thing but little things add up. Walmart wanted to avoid bad publicity and acquiesced to a popular but ridiculous and unfounded fear. When a business gives into fear, when a politician gives into to fear, when you give into fear, when I give into fear, we all lose a little.


I’m not afraid. I demand Walmart put the Naughty Leopard costume back on the shelf.

Who’s with me?

Tom Liberman