Sexy

171Sexy

My fellow feminists: what gives?  I thought we were pretty well settled on the idea that women have the absolute right to do what they choose with their own bodies and lives and that it’s never okay to shame or judge a woman for what she chooses to wear.  So why do we keep making an exception for Halloween?  Did I miss a memo?  Did we amend the definition of feminism to: “The radical notion that women are people, but only if they dress the way we tell them to on Halloween”?  We have enough of an uphill fight the rest of the year trying to get everyone else on board with the whole “no shaming, no judging” idea, so why set a bad example once a year?

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12 thoughts on “Sexy

  1. Eww, I totally agree. Nobody’s perfect, though, and even feminists can be hypocrites. But I agree, if slut-shaming is bad, why do we still do it to each other on Halloween? Makes no sense. Great blog, and great post! Care to check out mine?(: Downwiththenorm.com

  2. I’ve always been under the impression the problem wasn’t that people wanted to dress up in sexy costumes but that once you hit puberty (or average size when people generally hit puberty) it’s nearly impossible to find non-sexy costumes. Try finding a non-sexy nurse costume in an average store to fit the average sized 13 year old. It’s a downright Herculean feat.

    • I’m fully on board with the idea that people should be able to find the kind of costumes they want. I’m sure we can find ways of talking about that problem that don’t revolve around sex-shaming.

  3. As Alex stated, most of the anger I see is about there being a lack of non-sexy options available in stores. That, and sexy options for those under the age of puberty are not really a great thing either, which many other people have mentioned.
    I do, however, decline being a Feminist. I am a Humanist, or somebody who believes that all people are deserving of equal treatment for their actions and some basic level of respect. Sadly, I do not feel that solving the issues of any one group will fix the problems of discrimination, and there are almost always people willing to use a cause to try to subject others to a feeling of inferiority… thus we must attempt to make everyone stand on equal ground at once. *I suppose, should we meet intelligent life out there, that I might end up being a Sentientist, but that is a battle for another era!*

    • Equality is a goal, not a method. The trouble is that the greatest obstacles to equal treatment and respect for all people are the ongoing, sometimes subtle, but very real disadvantages that stick like glue to certain groups of people because of their gender, race, religion, sexuality, birthplace, language, or many other characteristics. The fact that people like you and I, who belong to most of the historically advantaged groups, don’t often see those disadvantages doesn’t make them unreal or unimportant. We can agree that equality for everyone is where we want to get to, but the road there leads through solving the issues of many particular groups.

      • I disagree. I believe that the road there begins with each person who takes action to treat everybody else fairly. In many cases, trying to address the issues of a single group has led to injustice being perpetrated upon other groups by many people belonging to that group. It is, to be honest, far too easy to blame others and avoid any personal responsibility… and once a group is treated as disadvantaged people use that to maintain victimhood and/or attack other groups of people (not everybody does, but many do and will, regardless of how they are treated.) The only way to actually achieve a situation in which people are treated equally is to look at every person as equal to begin with. To stop trying to pay favors to groups that were abused in the past, but rather to give them equal treatment and chance, and to stand up and require they do the same. To stand up and declare any case where anyone is mistreated this way as wrong.
        I have indeed seen many cases where groups of people are treated wrongly, and it goes in all directions and ways (of course, some are less sensational for headlines than others, such as the white male who was beaten and may have brain damage near Ferguson, or the racist term that some African American people use for themselves *after all, they base who can say it not upon inflection or intent… but upon skin color.) There are groups that claim they cannot be prejudiced, simply because they previously were treated in a prejudiced manner. I have seen cases where the classic ‘majority’ is in the wrong, hurting people who have done nothing to provoke such treatment. The point is that unless we skip past treating ourselves as separate groups, we promote injustice, prejudice, and hatred of other groups. It may not be the intent of those trying to fix the problems, but it is what ends up happening. You say equality is a goal and not a method? Children learn these ideas from watching those around them… and nothing less that equality will teach them to treat each other as equals. It is both, goal and method.
        Thus the only solution I see is to think of each other as Human, rather than dividing ourselves. After all, what we have been doing… it hasn’t worked. If we simply continue to do as we have done, then what cause have we to expect a different result?

      • I would very much like to live in a world where parting ourselves from the consequences of yesterday’s injustice could be as simple as treating everyone equally today. History shows us that it is not. Injustice lingers, even in a world of good will.

        The injustices that disproportionately effect certain groups in the modern western world are real and substantial. It is no more or less wrong when a white man is beaten than when a black man is, but black men are far more likely to be beaten, shot, or killed by the police who are supposed to be protecting them than white men are. It is no more or less wrong when a man suffers sexual or domestic violence than when a women does, but a woman is far more likely to suffer it than a man is. Homelessness is no more or less devastating to a straight teenager than it is to a gay teenager, but gay teens are far more likely to be homeless than straight ones are. To imagine that these and other such imbalances don’t matter is to be willfully blind to the problems that still need to be fixed in our world. As long as the problems are unevenly distributed, so must the solutions be.

        So, yes, I call myself a feminist. Not because I don’t believe in the equality of men and women, but rather because I do, and I recognize that the fundamental problems that continue to keep men and women from enjoying real equality weigh far more heavily on women than they do on men. If that changes, I’ll be happy to stop calling myself a feminist.

  4. Really? You’re slut shaming once a year and calling it good? Sexuality and sensuality are freedoms and your judgement and hangups about feminists are your own and I am a FAR superior artist to you.

    • It sounds like you and I have very different interpretations of what this comic was about.

      Just to be sure we are all on the same page here: I believe that women, like men, have an absolute right to their own bodies and sexualities and to express their sexuality in whatever way feels right to them (provided that everyone involved is consenting) whether that conforms to conventional cultural norms or not. I am disappointed in any person who would criticize anyone for doing so, and I find it hypocritical to stand up for sexual self-expression in some forms and contexts while criticizing it in others, as the brown-haired character in this comic does. The brown-haired guy in this comic is a satiric mouthpiece whose judgments and hangups I am mocking, not endorsing. If that perspective did not come through, then this comic has failed to do its job and I apologize for it.

      But, yeah, you are a much, much better artist than I am. Everyone reading this comment, please go check out K. J. Legry’s site at girlsodaatlas.wordpress.com for some beautiful artwork.

      • Nothing to forgive, I’ve long thought that was one of my less successful comics, so there’s some comfort in knowing I was right about that. 🙂 I’m really glad you commented.

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