Rant: The Trend of Slut-Shaming

SLUT-SHAMING

Fair Warning: This is a rant and an opinion piece.

(I also want to harken back to Clara’s post about the controversial Spider-Woman cover. Our two controversial subjects run along the same lines of the female image and the reactions therein.)

In the News

This article from Time is one among many that share their distaste for the treatment of young women in our school system.

Slut-shaming is a prominent issue, especially with the many voices, both male and female, calling out the judgment of those who are quick to blame women for the clothes that they wear instead of those who shame them.

(Aside from the fact that various channels of media point the way for women in terms of what is deemed attractive–comic book heroines, film stars, musical artists and acts, and any other avenue where a woman is front and center.)

So, instead of shaming society’s take on what makes an attractive woman, instead of shaming the men and women who throw their judgment under the pretense that people actually care what they think, we shun the individual who (1) wears what’s fashionable, (2) wears what she wants, (3) has a body because she’s a living, breathing, female homo sapien.

It is never okay to degrade another human for being who they are.

If you haven’t read the The Huffington Post article about the Florida teenager turned into a modern day Hester Prynne (video included), prepare yourselves for the oncoming storm.

Please note that I am emphasizing HUMILIATION, not issues of what is school appropriate. Don’t get me wrong, there are cases where clothing is not school appropriate–clothing that BOTH young men and women wear–that should be dealt with in a proper manner. If a young man walked into school with naught but his boxers, or a young lady in a bikini, then address the issue. But addressing the issue does not mean shaming and degrading the subject of the issue.

Are there as many stories about the dress code violations of young men that do not involve a transgender component?

In Literature

With this problem being prominent, I have prescribed, as required reading, The Scarlet Letter for my students. Here are the questions they frequently ask:

“Where’s the baby’s father?”

“Why doesn’t she reveal his identity?”

“Why do they single her out?”

Now, as the story progresses, they are better understanding the story of Hester and her baby’s father (I’m avoiding a spoiler in case a reader is unfamiliar with the tale), but, nonetheless, they can spot hypocrisy when it presents itself.

In the Nerd Community

Fanboys Anonymous posted a Duella Dent cosplay (from George Takei’s Facebook) that was shamed by some ignoramus in the nerd community. This instance brings to mind the slut-shaming that takes place within the nerd community when women cosplay female characters, DO THEM CORRECTLY, and then are called sluts, whores, and all other inappropriate terms.

Or, in the case of this female cosplayer from ComicCon, she’s harassed by so-called journalists who only ask her one question: What is your cup size?

And why do they dress with maximum cleavage and thigh-baring outfits? I wonder . . . is it because THAT’S HOW THEY’RE DRAWN?

And here’s BuzzFeed’s post about Tony Harris hating women (cosplayers).

Check out the Hawkeye Initiative for some great recreations of male superheroes in female superhero poses and garb. It’s hilarious and ludicrous — and eye-opening.

Just for Kicks: The Mary Sue posted a great photo gallery of fully-clothed version of comic book heroines (that also includes Vampirella).

Here’s Another Kick: FashionablyGeek.com has a rad photo of a WWII-inspired Wonder Woman cosplay.

Kudos to Emma Watson

Emma Watson is someone Hermoine Granger would be proud of. Check out her HeForShe campaign. Bravo, young lady. You’re doing it right. #HeforShe

In Conclusion

Shaming a woman for being a woman is why

  • Women have low self-esteem
  • Young men think it’s OK to degrade them
  • Rape and sexual assault are not treated as the severe crimes that they are
  • Transgender individuals (on both sides) are harassed for their sexual identity weakness and deviance

And men aren’t the only perpetrators of shaming. Women, too, are just as guilty. This has to stop.

< / rant >

 

**This post was originally published on October 6, 2014**

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