Sunday, September 27

The Max Factor.

When i was 16, i read Tucker Max's "I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell". From what i remember about the book, i didn't feel like it was significant enough to effect my self-esteem or distort the way i saw myself as a women or my respect for other women. I recall fondly reading it on an airplane and laughing hysterically while other passengers looked on with disdain. I understood, somehow that not all men were like that, that everyone had a capacity for superficiality & that most of the stories were made for entertainment purposes. Four years later, I would still encourage my 16 year old sister to read it, i wouldn't worry that she'd be psychologically damaged by it, because she also understands the elements of entertainment will, in a one-dimensional way, make women the butt of the joke. Which doesn't necessarily mean that women aren't equal to men. I would assume she'd be smart enough and strong enough to know that it wasn't representative of all men or their attitudes towards women. Even at 16, I don't recall being personally offended by the book.
This year, "I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell" is making a debut to a different audience - the less educated audience, the kind that apparently allows media to influence its every thought and action.

I'm aware that lines like "fat women aren't real people" don't necessarily send out a positive message, i still wouldn't expect any obese women to actually think that they aren't of human origin, nor would anyone be influenced by this statement enough to suspect that once a woman gains a specific amount of weight she is no longer human or worthy enough to be treated with the same element of humanity you would treat someone who's underweight.

Now, i consider myself a feminist, therefor i give women credit for being smart enough to take comments like this (given consideration towards the historical hardships and current advancements in women's rights) with a grain of salt. Instead, women are out picketing and writing angry letters... It's become a huge point of protest among feminist organizations & women all over the world, they're are calling for a boycott, claiming that the film is psychologically damaging for young girls, that it's degrading towards women (when in fact, it's women who are engaging in degrading sexual activity with a man who coins phrases like "meet them hot, leave them wet") & that it could influential enough to stop the entire male gender from ever respecting women.

Personally, i think that making the assumption that a movie could have enough power to have psychologically damaging effects to me, dramatically alter my self esteem or my change the degree to which i respect other women, is an insult to my intellectual capacity and my strength of character. I think that it's an insult to my father, my brother, my boyfriend, my teachers and my male friends to suggest that an hour of satire from the mind of a sexually degrading blogger, could make them treat me any differently, or respect me any less.

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