Friday, September 16, 2011

Return: To Modesty, Please...

Note to the reader: If you don't want to see images of scantily clad women, don't read this post.

Yesterday, as I was mall-walking with my boys in the stroller (yes, we still had temps in the triple digits here this week!), Jeremy said "Yook, Mama!" I looked up to see what was catching his attention, and I saw this huge poster in front of us:

"Oh, no!", I thought. 

"What are you looking at?" I asked, hoping that there might be something else. 

"Elephant!", he answered. Waaaaaay in the distance, was this adorable lady at the Rainforest Cafe:

"Phew!", I thought to myself. "My innocent boy is still my innocent boy." 

It made me wonder, though, how hard it will be for me to raise young men who are respectful of women when society constantly bombards us with sexualized images of women just to sell products. As an experiment, I decided to take pictures during the rest of our mall walk of images that could be seen from outside of the stores we passed. 

Also in Guess' window was this gal sprawled out on a bed with mile-high cleavage:

And this image also was at the Guess store of three classy dames throwing themselves ever-so-sultrily at a lollipop sucking dude who could seemingly care less about them, even though he seems to be the center of their universe:

Next on our walk, we encountered these bigger than life floozies at Victoria's Secret. Their message? Wear these underthings and you'll be "Unforgettable" to your man:

Um, newsflash, Victoria! I don't need your little secret to be unforgettable to my man! Ain't that right, baby? ;)

As if Victoria weren't enough, Frederick came from Hollywood to flaunt this business in the face of every passerby:

All I can say is, "For reals, Freddy?" Nothing about that window display even makes me want to walk into the store.

Things got a little tamer when we came upon the Reebok store. Notice, though, the subtlety of this...

The man is wearing a tank top, but the ladies are working out in jog bras. Hey, Reebok, while I'm a big fan of holding my girls in place while I work out, I generally throw a shirt on top. Thanks!

A random novelty store had this lovely lady in the window:

Because we all know that the reason we wear a scarf is mainly to be a ta-ta cover.

Finally, we came upon a store called "Perfect Bodies" that sell...well, just read the sign.

I love that the web address at the bottom of the poster is for ""

All this to say...Yes, I absolutely will do everything I can to raise my sons to be respectful of all people, to have pure minds, and not to look on women as objects. I'd sure appreciate it if advertising and marketing teams across America would get on board!


Katie said...

Tracy, I can't agree with you more! I too, am trying hard to raise my boys to be pure of mind and heart. It is not an easy task in this day and age.

Cherry said...

Not to mention how hard it is to raise girls to understand how awesome each person is regardless of her boob size, pant size, the name on her pants/purse/shoes, how to have self value without the pressure to be "perfect" per the marketing we are surrounded by. (and of course, that applies to boys too)

but really, i don't think its a modern world thing. Advertising with someone's definition of beauty has always been around. It's that definition of beauty that is the trouble.

J at said...

What scares me more than the hyper sexuality of it is along the lines of what Cherry said. That the focus is SO much on a woman's/girl's looks, and nothing else. So many of the teens I know are focused SO much on their hair, their makeup, their clothes, etc. It's exhausting. And I don't know what to do about it, except to have these discussions, to point out the hypocrisy and sexism of our culture, and hope that some of it will get through, and they will value themselves for more than their body and their face. With the younger set (aka, yours), you can maybe talk about it at their level, if they bring it up. "Yes, she looks silly in that picture. Do you know anyone who would go outside in their bra? That's the company trying to sell their clothes. It's silly." When they're older you can tell them that it's actually harmful to the psyche of our culture, of our young men and women, to view people this way. But they're young for it now. And that WAS a very cute elephant. ;)

Anonymous said...

Moral of the story: don't walk your kids at the mall!