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I think there are 2 dynamics at play here. Nudity is a very significant aspect of protest, and I don't think it's appropriate to tell women that they should or should not go nude in order to protest. Nudity in protest includes men and women of all shapes and sizes. Think of the World Naked Bike Ride, for instance.
That's not to say that sexism and patriarchy don't play a role. Do you think it's an accident that most images of nudity in protest are images of young women? For example, loot at how PETA takes advantage of young women in its campaigns. If it's just about the protest, why aren't there ever any men stripping down in protest of animal cruelty? Why aren't there ever any middle aged or older people stripping down?
If it's just about the protest, why aren't there ever any men stripping down in protest of animal cruelty? Why aren't there ever any middle aged or older people stripping down?
Because they are more concerned about bike lanes than animal cruelty?
Because they are more concerned about bike lanes than animal cruelty?[/quote]
I think you missed my point, and that being that at a PETA protest, you only ever see young women naked, and probably has a great deal to do with the way PETA organizes these protests. PETA has faced a great deal of criticism for sexism.
It's undeniable that exploiters of every variety use women's bodies and their images, clothed or unclothed, for profit, "entertainment", control, power, degradation, and so forth.
But in the Québec nearly-nude demos - which I think are what triggered the OP linked article - disrobing, both by women and men, was a voluntary political statement of resistance.
Context is everything.
Nor do I recall any serious controversy in Québec about these demos - other than the cops threatening arrests if people went totally naked. It's interesting that the OP article needs to reach all the way to ultra-right-wing columnist Naomi Lakritz - whose career spans the National Examiner to the Winnipeg Sun to the Calgary Herald - to find someone to criticize the courageous students of Québec for choosing their forms of protest.
perhaps. Although I'd mainly be concerned about "road rash". It's bad enough scraping your elbows and knees.
Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amusing that the "Topfree Equal Rights Association" spokesperson they quoted in the article in the opening post was a guy? Going to their website, I see that two out of three of their directors are men. And one of those men, the Coordinator (I'm assuming the highest position in the organization) criticizes the female protesters in Quebec for painting red squares on their nipples.
Sorry, I just have a hard time taking seriously an organization that is trying to liberate women from having to cover their breasts in public, when the organization isn't even run by women. I'll bet you there are lots of guys they could recruit into that organization! It's like, aww, don't paint your nipples, because, uh, the paint symbolizes shame and um, sexualizes them more...yeah, that's the ticket, so, like, don't paint them, just leave them bare and more visible. I'll feel much better about your political statement if you bare your breasts the way I like it best.
It reminds me of the stories I've heard about guys during the sexual revolution who used to try to pressure women to have sex with them by saying, "You're liberated, aren't you?"
I completely agreed with Gwen Jacobs when she challenged the law and won in Ontario. Not that very many of us are taking advantage of this legal freedom, but technically, I agree with the basic principle that if men can go topless legally, so can women. But this organization quoted in the article (which I hadn't heard of before reading about it there) makes me go "hmm."
The joy of going topless
If you can't get enough attention and support for your message without resorting to going naked, maybe it's just not that strong a message in the first place.
Not enough support is one of the reasons I can't protest topless.
topless protest seems reasonably focused in the climate of the new quebec liberty laws; that is, to challenge all other laws and thresholds for lawbreaking and buzz in the ears of those holding the reins.
it seems more effective than spontaneous slutwalks at your local community college albeit for a cause that pales..
[quote=Maysie]Not enough support is one of the reasons I can't protest topless.[/quote]
This is why babble should have a like -- nay! -- a love button!
We all have a love button :D