Iconic World War II photo was almost banned from Veterans Affairs health facilities

March 6 – The photo has been shown, very likely, the world over. 

It’s after the victory in Japan in 1945 that essentially ended the Second World War. America was celebrating. Times Square in New York City saw people in the streets, thrilled that the fighting was over. 

A photographer captured the iconic photo of a Navy sailor kissing a woman he didn’t know wearing a white uniform at the intersection of Broadway and Seventh Avenue. 

The photo was later published in Life magazine and has become incredibly symbolic of the celebratory feelings in the country at the time. 

Well, yesterday, a memo in the Department of Veterans Affairs was shared on social media, saying that the photo would be removed from VA health facilities because it depicts a non-consensual act and was not in line with the department’s sexual harassment policy. 

As you can imagine, that lit a firestorm on social media. 

Since then, officials have assured the photo will not be removed and the memo had not been approved. 

Michele Jansen of NewsTalk 103.7FM pointed out, “This is a memo by RimaAnn Nelson, Assistant Undersecretary for Health for operations at the VA. It’s dated February 29 and says we must remove that photo from all VA Health Administration facilities in alignment with the Department of Veteran Affairs commitment to maintaining a safe, respectful and trauma informed environment. That idea of trauma informed has been taken to a radical level and that’s why I and others are sounding an alarm about Pennsylvania’s a trauma informed state thanks to Governor Wolf. I don’t think Shapiro has changed that. We’ve got to be careful about what we’re calling trauma these days because it’s getting very ideological.”

Attorney Clint Barkdoll said, “Fortunately, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs who apparently knew nothing about this, as soon as he learned about it, he apparently learned about it on Twitter, he immediately issued an order, resending that memo, so those pictures are staying up. The odd backstory to this by the way, as you may remember, a few years ago, there was an effort among journalists to identify the people in that photo, that iconic photo. They were never able to figure out who they were. They actually found the woman and as I recall, she was a dental hygienist. She said that that was an unwanted kiss, but she wasn’t complaining about it. She said everyone was in the square there celebrating the end of the war and American victory, but apparently some of these sort of woke culture people within the VA and the Health Administration, were citing the fact that that was an unwanted kiss and it was an example of abuse. Well, frankly, I would never have even known that had it not been for them pushing that out to the public. So I think it’s just an outrageous example of how extreme some of these people have become in trying to ban pictures like that.”