Tuesday, June 19, 2007
SEX SEX SEXISM!
On recent mornings on my eminent radio show, the Wednesday Morning After on CKUT (90.3), my co-host Neil and I have started to implement a morning news clipping segment. We'll bring in a piece of news or an article that we find interesting, and discuss it and, often in my case, why we find in problematic.
An example from last week was an article in the Gazette about how Saudi Arabian women were reconsidering and refashioning their abayas, the head-to-toe, traditionally black garment that women wear. Fine, if that's happening, but the article itself was extremely judgmental, claiming that the abayas were "universally considered a mark of oppression." What a ridiculous thing to say. Firstly, who are you to say "universally considered?" Secondly, what does the world think of Western clothes like short skirts and high heels? I feel pretty oppressed in an underwire bra, to be honest about it.
Then the article went on to connect the conservative values of Saudi Arabi with the 9/11 attacks! Talk about perpetuating a fear of otherness. Next time you see a woman in an all-covering garment, she might be trying to blow up a building.
On the more positive side of the news angle, however, I did see an ad in the gazette encouraging people to complain to the Ethics Council of the alcoholic beverage industry in Quebec if you ever see an ad for booze that sexually exploits or objectifies people, encourages sexism, link drinking to popularity, success, and sexual prowess. I encourage everyone to do it! Email them at firstname.lastname@example.org or check out the website at www.educalcool.qc.ca/ethics. Here is a tiny little forum to let people know that it's not okay to objectify people in advertisements, and if we use it as much as we can, it just might bleed over into the makeup ads, clothing ads, and cold medicine ads that do this, too. Complain! Let your voice be heard! This is a place to start.