Sunday, January 22, 2012
Stop it ladies! You are not furthering the cause of women in the outdoors, you are furthering the misconception that for a woman hunter/angler/ trapper ( insert your own outdoor pursuit here) to succeed you must cater to the men by displaying all your worldly goods; and I don't mean your new Benelli .
It started with a facebook post trying to find new page fans.. if a page promoting FISHING FOR BREAST CANCER received x many likes the profile photo would change to a large busted lady spilling out of her her pink Maidenform. As an angler who lost both breasts; and then had to endure what seemed like a second mastectomy when my reconstruction went awry - the absolute last thing I want to see promoting breast cancer awareness among women anglers is a set of 44 DD's popping out of pink lace bra. Show me a tastefully dressed survivor casting her line please. Show me that these women anglers understand how devastating breast cancer can be to a woman's self image and her ability to continue to pursue outdoor adventures. Show me something real and heart felt, not a pink lace bra damn it!
I have to question how many male anglers "liked" the page just so they could ogle the profile picture without getting the message?
Next comes an ad for a calendar with page after page of bikini swathed hunters and anglers - from an organization that states it promotes women in the outdoors, no less. This calendar was promoting women in the outdoors - but not in the way myself or virtually any of my fellow outdoorswomen friends wish to be promoted.
I have message for this organization; You are not promoting women in the outdoors, you are promoting the ancient and archaiac sexist attitude that a woman afield is only good for the occasional purient leer and snicker.
The images were laughable to say the least. Yep, I'm going to sit in a bikini to spring turkey hunt..ticks, chiggers, and poison ivy abound..better yet, you betcha I'm lying in a frozen field waiting on that coyote in my g string.
Give me a break! Have we a women in the outdoors still not moved past this use of our bodies to sell ourselves as outdoor enthusiasts? I know..I know.. sex sells.
But, if we as women outdoor enthusiasts are promoting women in the outdoors, it behooves us to set the proper example. A woman is just as attractive fully clothed, with her equipment and trophy proudly displayed. We strive to be recognized for our knowledge, abilities and skills; not our breasts.
So I issue a challenge to my fellow outdoor enthusiasts - speak up when you see this blatant use of the female form to sell a product, a service, or as a fund raiser. Ask about the model's skills, her trophies, her life experiences and what she truly does to further the cause of women in the outdoors.
And ladies, if you happen to be one of those bikini clad models - get yourself some self esteem, properly fitting clothing, dress for the occasion and promote your skills not your sex.
Posted by Gretchen Steele at 5:34 AM
Labels: women in the outdoors