Hello Kitty punishes Thai police officers

The Thai police force has developed a new way to keep its officers in line: Make them wear pink Hello Kitty armbands if they screw up. Why? Because Hello Kitty is for girls, and so making grown men wear it is horrendously emasculating and humiliating.

It is the pink armband of shame for wayward police officers, as cute as can be with a Hello Kitty face and a pair of linked hearts.

No matter how many ribbons for valor a Thai officer may wear, if he parks in the wrong place, or shows up late for work, or is seen dropping a bit of litter on the sidewalk, he can be ordered to wear the insignia.

“Simple warnings no longer work,” said Pongpat Chayaphan, acting chief of the Crime Suppression Division in Bangkok, who instituted the new humiliation this week.

“This new twist is expected to make them feel guilt and shame and prevent them from repeating the offense, no matter how minor,” he said. “Kitty is a cute icon for young girls. It’s not something macho police officers want covering their biceps.”


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7 comments for “Hello Kitty punishes Thai police officers

  1. August 7, 2007 at 3:57 pm

    I see all the ways in which this is bad, and yet I would consider being forced to wear Hello Kitty a horrific punishment, not because it *girly*, but because I’m horrified by most cute stuff. If my husband wishes to torment me, all he has to do is get the kids to give me some or another “cute” gift that I will be forced to use or display. It took me almost two years to ditch the Tweetybird cookie jar. I’m still working on the Scooby-Doo pajamas.

    So I can see it as a working punishment – though not so much for macho men, as for those who feel like I do.

  2. August 7, 2007 at 7:36 pm

    The mere mention of Hello Kitty makes me bust out the maniacal laughter. I guess some part of me just assumes that she’s a deeply subversive pop icon.

    I don’t know about Thailand, but I’m sure cops here would find this an amusing rite of passage.

    I wish I could be offended by the obvious “being feminine is bad” thing, but I find the whole thing so ridiculous that I can’t seem to take it seriously. I mean… it’s Hello Kitty!

  3. Miller
    August 7, 2007 at 8:59 pm

    Ah, yes. The whole “Isn’t being a girl the most shameful thing ever?” never fails.


  4. August 7, 2007 at 9:19 pm

    Aww, I want a Hello Kitty armband. That’s adorable.

    Err, I mean, what a terrific horror these men are faced with! Littering no longer gets you a fine, but PINK PUNISHMENT. When will they learn?

  5. August 7, 2007 at 10:35 pm

    They should’ve gone for Hello Kitty thongs worn Superman style. Now that’s emasculating.

  6. August 8, 2007 at 12:55 am

    I guess no one in India would be surprised by that or would fail to see the humour in the punishment.
    Indian men always have been sent/given/urged to wear bangles if they did not act like real men.
    Forget cops it works with criminals also. It seems that Dawood Ibrahim, the dreaded underworld don, after the riots in Mumbai in 1992 against Muslims was sent bangles by courier by some neighbourhood woman and he felt emasculated enough to plan a series of bomb blasts soon after!
    It might work in Thailand too…

  7. August 8, 2007 at 12:50 pm

    Ukrainian men, on the other hand, are comfortable with their masculinity – and wear g-strings on the beach to prove it.

    Mwa ha ha.

    I want that armband, dammit.

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