This is blog post entry from former Model turned soon to be Mom, Alex Simwise (@), titled “To Tit or Not to Tit”, posted on her tumblr on Oct. 3, 2012. I won’t give you the details - just know that it’s important to read it slowly, and how it relates to some topics at hand today.
Original post can be found here. Enjoy.
As someone who has been objectified for the past 10 or so years I can say with all honesty that it’s not that bad. As life events go it’s somewhere between a sunny day at Thorpe Park and root canal surgery on the pleasure/pain scale. It was a choice. Now that I am older it is my choice not to be. I pulled out from that world like a Catholic penis, and now… now I am different. I dress differently, hang out with different (read: nicer) people and don’t go out to the same places… but far be it for me to declare that everyone should do as I do. I don’t have that authority and neither should you.
Nothing offends me more than white knights (apart from maybe Jimmy Saville’s face and the smell of dead animal) or people who stand up earnestly on behalf of ‘others’ best interests when those others didn’t ask for help in the first place. Guys (and girls) high up on their white horse claiming to be womankind’s saviour when actually we are doing alright, thanks. It really does my head in. At the moment the world seems awash with PC types campaigning for the end of objectification, but unless they get rid of the whole of the publishing, entertainment, and advertising worlds, respectively, it seems a bit of a silly battle, and not one that everyone wants.
Objectification is a funny thing. Everyone is so set on its terrible social implications that no-one ever admits that sometimes it feels quite good. No-one wants to accept that some women like to be objectified, that they do it because they want to be. Even I liked it for a bit. It was a confidence boost, an ego massage, a moment of swagger. It felt good to be wanted… until I went off and found someone that I wanted to be with more and then it felt a bit icky. So I stopped. I don’t get my tits out anymore, not because I was told to or because of some moral high ground, but because I got to a point where I’d get them out and my mind was all like “Nahhhhh mate… this feels weird…” so I gave them to my boyfriend as a HBO exclusive. That’s not to say I wouldn’t like the choice to air the puppies on the (extremely unlikely) chance I’d want to do it again. Choice is a freedom that we all should have, even if it is just a minutely remote possibility.
It goes without saying that some women like being objectified and some women don’t, but I think just as the women who DON’T want to be objectified should have the choice not to be, women who DO want to be should have the choice to unleash their breasts on the world if they so desire, as long as it IS a choice and they are not being forced. One group cannot seek to cancel out the other as that is not true equality, it is the repression of a woman’s very valid desires. Some women want to be sexy and it is very puritanical of those against it to deny them that. In theory, women should be allowed to be whatever they want as long as it’s not like, the next Rose West (although she did have her merits - a dogged loyalty to knee socks being one of them).
My advice is to treat each person as an individual rather than try to repress and generalise. Just because one woman is offended by something doesn’t mean they all are. Allow us all our freedoms to be whoever we want to be, whether that’s a gamer, a stripper, a stay at home mum, an undertaker or a badger baiter… but do so without intruding on the freedoms of others. It’s a delicate balance, but one that is not corrected by one outspoken person speaking for us all.
I may not be glamour modelling’s biggest cheerleader (and have a complicated relationship with it at best) but I’d never advocate its removal from society all-together, which is what a lot of these things (anti-booth babes and anti-Page 3 bollocks) are conspiring to do. In many ways, this attitude that anything sexual a women might do ‘is degrading’ is just as backwards. It’s totally disregarding a side of womanhood that DOES EXIST and is not getting us anywhere in the process… all it’s doing is making a few self-righteous people feel good about themselves whilst they poo on a lot of other people’s parties (eww, scat-fest). A job is not demeaning or degrading if a woman actively pursues it and does it by choice. Remember that.
I happen to love tits, whether they be in the paper, at a games expo, or in a video game. They don’t offend me because being offended by tits is really fucking juvenile and stupid. If one can’t accept that giant tits are part of what makes the video games world go round, then what the hell are you doing playing video games?! Video games are meant to be fun, light-hearted and NOT BASED ON REAL LIFE WHATSOEVER. From Silent Hill’s nurse tits to Dead or Alive’s giant inflatable tits, via Lara Croft and that weird-looking chick from Bayonetta, unreal video-game tits have made gaming a pleasurable experience for me since as far as I can remember. This logic that the removal of tits from video games would make the industry ‘more acceptable’ is bollocks. As long as there are brat kids blowing each other’s heads off and calling each other ‘Thunder Fags’ on COD, gaming will never be acceptable.
And with that I’ll bid adieu and crawl back in my hole to ponder how boring games would be without tits, when they were literally the only good thing about being a games journalist.