VANCOUVER — As I open the Facebook news feed this morning, a picture greets me on Billboard Magazine’s post about their awards show. It’s a picture of Taylor Swift accepting an award. All I see is a total cleavage shot. This is mainstream media. She’s wearing a gown that exposes more than half the lovely fleshy mass of her breast almost to the point of her nipple. This is the same Taylor Swift that was recently quoted in Maxim, of all magazines, as lauding the heralds of the emergence and dominance of feminism being akin to equality. It’s a slippery slope indeed. Objectification vs. Empowerment.
This brings me to what I’ve been mulling around in my mind for days. A recent Facebook post ironically directed at a different thirteen in our midst was heckle shaming him for using a sexy punk rock female form in several of his punk gigs poster advertising. Many politically correct opinions were given by both male and female peeps in the scene. A lot of these reminded me of the hypocrisy of the Facebook glass houses phenomenon. ‘Do what I say but not what I do.’
Now, to counterpoint Mcthirteen’s lynch mob, I have to say that I’ve seen cleavage, bare midriffs and sexy clothes donned by the female posters abhorring his poster art. Empowerment? I’ve also seen similar sexy female posters done by a dude that relies on vintage pinup and B-movie imagery for his poster art. Objectification? I find those posters beautifully done yet still as provocative but more tasteful than Wendy O’s stylings. Sure Seamus’s posters are a bit blunt or crude, but if you attend one of his shows in the scene he is working, you will see a zillion selfies from the gig documenting these same styled young and sexy punkettes. So maybe he is advertising his audience and not the bands on the bill. These ladies are dressing like that because they want to.
In the last decade, the females in our scene have been involved with proudly baring their sexuality through burlesque, Suicide Girls-style photo shoots and becoming front women in astounding numbers. Is anyone prudishly denigrating their efforts? Fuck no! They are proud of their vigor to fight through their own demons of self-body shaming and giving a big fuck you to others with Victorian-era attitudes. It’s a brave new world out there for women. Hell, when I was a much younger woman in better body shape, I dressed to attract. Now I mobilize with the same uniform I’ve worn for a decade. The comfy and I-don’t-give-a-fuck look: hoodie, vest, miscellaneous black shirt, black pants, boots. When it gets hot out, I do opt for shorts or a skirt that bare my freakishly white legs. That’s 50. No imminent need to couple or reproduce.
It just seems over the last couple of years every poster on Facebook now has an advanced degree in pseudo psychological politically correct social work. You will never stop the inherent attraction of men to women. That is how our population flourishes. Can we stop the objectification of women? A solution doubtful, in our lifetime with clothing designers, the entertainment industry, the media, and the gawkers all in league with the cliché of ‘sex sells.’ One social media scarlet letter at a time is your go-to cure?
Now back to your back issues of Playboy and perhaps start ripping objectifying posters off your children’s bedroom walls. Even Disney princesses and the unrealistic measurements of 36-18-33 Barbie dolls are oozing in far-fetched sexuality. Stop dressing your daughters in mini-stripper outfits that fly off the racks at a mall. It starts with the brainwashing of the world’s children. How about a frank talk about reality with them? They take their lead from the adults in their life. You would need to boycott everything, my dear punks. The mindless entertainment mainstreamers that even you participate in would still win.BC, British Columbia, empowerment, feminism, objectification