Did you know that The Sun is the most popular/read newspaper in the country? This is the newspaper that can’t make up it’s own mind, remember.
It is also the newspaper that brought us the infamous page 3. Did you also know that thousands of girls apply to bare all on page 3, filled with hopes and dreams of becoming the next Jordan? They have yearly competitions where girls (they are always called girls – never women) can send in their best ‘saucy’ snaps and, fingers crossed, maybe get lucky. This worries me so much that I can barely put it into words.
I hate page 3. The whole idea of it is outdated, degrading and humiliating to women and so damaging to the self esteem and emotional development of girls that I feel like I could happily tear up every copy of The Sun I come across, could happily smack Rupert Murdoch in the face.
Why are we ok with the fact that, every day, a new girl is plastered half naked in the newspaper for the world to see? The entire purpose of the picture is for men (and women) to ogle. It paints women as nothing more than mere decorations, nothing more than an object to be admired, picked up and put down at will, and judged. Men across the country will be sizing up how much they want to have sex with her, basing their opinion on nothing more than the way her body looks in a grainy cheap shot. Online they can even rate and give the girl a score on how fanciable she is.
The whole idea of it is disgusting – no way would a half naked man be splashed across the pages of a national newspaper everyday for women to look at. Is this because we are not viewed as sexual beings, only sex objects? Cosmo has a man of the month in their magazine; yet this is considered risky, makes it a sexy, dangerous idea. It also is linked to testicular cancer, with the images promoting awareness – as if Cosmo feel the need to justify it despite the fact that ‘lads mags’ and newspapers like The Sun etc never do. People feel quite comfortable slating it, feel fine saying how unneccessary it is and yet we don’t bat an eyelid at the fact that every day, teenage girls are posing in a g string so that men can perve over her. Because Im sorry, that is what it is. There is a massive, mean part of me that thinks that the only men who enjoy these kind of images are the type who couldnt get a naked girl to go anywhere near them in real life.
The big question though, is what effect does page 3 have on us? I think The F Word, a fantastic feminist blog asks that questions much more succinctly when it wonders: ‘So prevalent is the presentation of women as submissive ‘sex objects’ in the British press and media, might society have been brainwashed into believing that girls and women exist purely for men’s sexual gratification and titillation?’
When we put page 3 girls alongside the girls seen gyrating in their underwear in music videos and the girls in movies who are often played as weak, passive characters in desperate search of a husband; When we factor in the girls in vampire novels who seem to be pathetic needy characters who fall apart without a man to support, save and sexually view them; When we add in the stories the media churn out every so often about poor sad singleton Jennifer Aniston who seems to have replaced Renee Zellweger (who went and settled down like a good girl) as the ‘poor woman’ who cant ‘keep’ a man and is obviously depressed, desperately unhappy and has to rely on her friends to support her through the tough challenge of being, heaven forbid, not shacked up: All of these paint a massive portrait of women as pathetic sexual objects, good for nothing other that looking at and wheeling in and out whenever the man in question fancies a bit. We are seen as the desperate, clingy ball and chain, good only for ogling. When confronted with a woman who doesn’t want to have sex at every opportunity, who doesn’t feel the need to be defined in terms of her realtionship status, society trips over itself in a quest to find a niche for them – a pigeonhole, a purpose. They must be lesbians, or frigid or bitches. They can’t be normal for gods sake, there must be something wrong with them.
Page 3 girls always have a massive smile plastered on. Little girls could see this and think wow, what a job. They might see the attention these women get and want it for themselves. But what attention? Drunk men trying it on? Men thinking you are ‘easy’ or ‘up for it?’ The whole business is seedy, depressing, it feels dirty to me. I hate seeing ‘celebrities’ like Jordan crashing about, so ‘done up’ that their own mother probably wouldnt recognise them without the make up, completely succumbing to the page 3, male ‘fantasy’ stereotypes. False breasts, false eye lashes, false teeth, false hair, false nails, fake tan, skirts as small as possible, tops as low as they can go whilst still being able to be filed under the category of clothing. It all seems so insane that we are breeding this type of character who seems to exist only to please men and make them happy. The problem with all that is, as Jordan herself admits, is that it isn’t real. But by promoting it, by encouraging it, by accepting it we are saying it’s ok. Women are not just here to look sexy, pout a bit and make a man happy with hourly blow jobs so why the hell are we supporting newspapers that sell that idea every day? Every person that buys The Sun or Nuts, or Zoo or any other form of media that objectifies women is funding the objectification of women. We are literally giving them the money to continue degrading us.
– Today has been a hellish today. Thanks to the lovely tube strike it took me nearly 2 hours to get home. I feel exhausted, I feel frustrated and unhappy. I have no idea what is wrong with me, why all of a sudden I am miserable but it seems to be a reoccurring theme with me lately.
– On a more happy note, my gold sparkly flesh tunnels arrived today!