Apparently assuming that the naked backs of young, beauty-compliant women aren’t sexualized at all in this culture, the campaign seeks to raise awareness about the routine humilation of women on page 3 of the British tabloid The Sun by encouraging women to write messages on their backs and send in pictures. Turn your back on page 3, geddit?
For some reason, this didn’t result in the immediate abolishment of Page 3.
It’s almost like you can’t fight the exploitation of female bodies by exploiting female bodies. Well, knock me down with a feather! Next you’ll be telling me that Slutwalks don’t actually achieve anything but a free strip show for liberal sexist men.
Below is a “poem” against Page 3 in which a woman talks a lot about how sexy boobs are and how p%rn is great but for some reason doesn’t belong in a newspaper. (about the 4:45 mark)
It could have been argued from a rational standpoint why sexualizing women’s bodies is bad for women, but who wants to hear women go on and on in a logical manner as if they were some kind of fully human beings capable of abstract reasoning? Everybody just wants to see naked ladies being sexy. But only on the top shelf, of course.
If you’ve read my blog before, you know that I support a movement called No More Page 3. It also seeks to abolish Page 3, by signing a petition and boycotting advertisers. Instead of getting naked, they wear T-shirts.
Well, that’s a step up. I’m all for anything that gets rid of even a single source of female objectification. But the naked-activism tactics of former anti-Page 3 movements seem to be spilling into the current movement too.
No More Page 3 recently got a burst of media attention for introducing a oh-so-sexy naked Lego lady who is supposed to be a Page 3 model. That’s right, with little Lego pasties on her square plastic tits.
This is meant to be an expression of outrage that the Sun offers Lego sets to kids while exploiting adult females on page 3. Naked Lego Lady will totally show the kids that exploiting women’s bodies is wrong!
Pardon me. That was my head hitting the desk.
Yeah. I know. It’s supposed to be ironic. But this compulsory sexiness that hangs like a suffocating veil over any place women gather is the whole reason we’re pissed off in the first place.
These activists are stuck in bargaining mode. Here’s some sexy bait to get your attention, public! Now listen to our cause and empathize with us!
Dear eager young sexyfeminists who think you’re the first people in the world who have ever thought of using sexual manipulation to get attention for your cause: I know you think you’ve hit upon the magic combination of sexxayness and sassiness, unique to yourselves, that will undo women’s oppression. And that nobody else has never succeeded in doing this before because they just weren’t as clever or as creative or as spirited or as individualistic as your own special-snowflake self.
You are not going to like what I am about to say, but you need to hear it.
This has been done many times before, and it does not work.
Sexually exploiting female bodies to protest the sexual exploitation of female bodies never works. This is because your oppressors don’t care how ironic you’re being as long as you’re showing them your tits, your bits, your back, your whatever. Or at least talking about how sexy you are. They have no illusions about your power; only you do.
Many young women mistake the thrill they get from male attention and admiration, their ability to influence male behavior at least slightly, and the ability to get leered at and photographed for real political power. That’s only too easy to do in a world where women have damn little real political power to compare anything else to. So hearken unto this:
That power? The male admiration? Lasts only as long as you stay young and beautiful enough to qualify, and as long as you keep dancing to the patriarchal tune. And that admiration is nothing more than a desire to use and control. There is no empathy there.
Men can never be persuaded to stop oppressing you. They have no reason to stop.
You’re not fully human in their eyes; you’re an alien from Planet Pink who loves to display the female submission to cultural norms that is commonly called femininity, who lives for the thrill of being used as a man’s personal meatsock, and who is content to be less-than in every aspect of life. Deviate from this script and you’ll find out just how much power you really have. Male reactions will range from sighs and eye-rolling and accusations of being oversensitive, to deadly force.
Appeals for “equality” won’t faze them. Men have the power, so they get to define what “equality” is, and they’ve defined it as something we already have. Pushing for anything more gets the male martyr act from dudes who think giving up their privilege is oppressing men. Don’t even think about taking away their p%rn! That’s crazy talk!
Even the men who love you, and the men you think are great, and the men who feel kinda squicky about rape culture, benefit from your subhuman status. Even the men who say all the right things, at least until you stray too far from doing what they want.
Whenever I say this, of course, I get accused of hating men. What the radical feminist actually hates is oppression. Resentment of oppression is interpreted by oppression-dispensers as a resentment of themselves, because they can’t disentangle their sense of self from their humanity-smushing privilege. That’s why they get so hostile when the idea of change is proposed. Because it feels like losing to them. And it’s why we’ll have to go on with the changes without asking them first.
The oppression of women is a global humanitarian crisis; we don’t have time to sit around and wait while men fumble with the vague idea that maybe there might be wrong with the way women are treated. They won’t even get to the vague idea stage as long as we’re flapping our bits at them, though. Sexual manipulation short-circuits empathy.
I aver that the only ultimate cure for this situation is worldwide feminist revolt, but until the revolt comes, reform is better than nothing. Attempting to further the cause of women by using sexual manipulation tactics to suck up to our oppressors will result in neither revolt or reform, just the undermining of female activism and the reinforcement of a shiteous status quo.
So knock it off, already.