Friday, August 22, 2008

Campaign For Real Bullshit

Watch this video.

Girls are under more pressure than ever… really? I guess Ann Frank went to Amsterdam on holiday.

I applaud a company selling its product by appealing to one’s inner sense of self rather than trying to shame, cajole, or peer pressure, as so many commercials try to do. I only wish that Dove did it with out feeding into this bullshit sense of “Oh, we’ve got it so hard these days.”

Just because there’s a billboard, that doesn’t mean you have to listen to it. You shouldn’t need a soap company to tell you that. The idea that culture is this oppressive weight that dictates itself to us poor victims is complete and utter bullshit. If you’re a strong person, you take in all the options around you and make the decisions that are best for you and that fit best with your values.

If you take your cues from a soap commercial, even if the particular message is a positive one, you’re still just a tool.


Anonymous said...

im trying to think how to say this nicely.

its hard growing up as a girl looking at the way women are portrayed and given the impression of what men like. you get a fucked up image of what you should look like. i have friends with eating disorders and have struggled with my own body image for years. ive starved myself and taken diet pills or whatever helped me lose weight. im a size 6. i have hips. i have breasts and an ass. i will never go lower than a 6. but i still try. it is hard to understand what this is like unless it happens to you. so i applaud dove for doing this, for bringing it to the attention of the parents to remind their daughters that they are human and beautiful.

and to compare this to anne frank is just asinine. you cant compare the two. i have a friend who is anorexic and bulemic. in a few months, she lost a tremendous amount of weight to the point that she was skin and bones. her hair started to fall out, she started having heart problems, and would vomit up blood almost everyday. if you want though, i will gladly give you her number and you can tell her that she really doesnt have it that hard.

Peregrine John said...

You do what you want because you want to. Blaming others, unless they actually have a gun to your head or knife to your throat, is false victimhood.

Want equality? Here's equality: suck it up and own your own actions. You can be a victim of others' opinions and get pity, or you can have respect. Not both. That is what men have always lived with, and we can't even point out mistreatment without getting it invoked.

Anonymous said...

again, like i said, you dont get it.

so lets just agree to disagree

Lance said...

pitseleh: i fully admit that compassion is not my strong suit, but somebody has to speak the truth.

i have a certain amount of appreciation for what dove is doing. i simply think that in making this a societal or cultural issue, you create more victims in the long run. all the diet products, surgical procedures, and beauty aids make a convenient scapegoat; but they're just options. noone is forcing them on anybody.

the way to combat this is to teach people to be individuals and to embrace their own vlaues and tastes. you can't do that by coddling and pretending that things are worse than they are.

also, this has very little to do with what men like. look at a playboy or a maxim and then open up vogue. i guarantee you'll find more hips and curves in the former than in the latter.

Anonymous said...

again, like i said, you dont get it.

so lets just agree to disagree

Lance said...

i'm fine with agreeing to disagree. personally, i get uncomfortable when i'm surrounded by people who agree with me.

'you just don't get it', however, is a bit of a cop out.

Anonymous said...

im sorry - i wasnt trying to use that line as a cop out. like i said in the first post, i was trying to be nice - im not very good at that. lets try this again:

i think youre an ignorant asshole. so lets agree to disagree.

Lance said...

Q. what have we learned today?
A. ignorant asshole = disagrees with pitseleh.

when i read your first comment, i actually expected this to turn into an actual dialogue and that maybe i would see a side of this that i didn't before. apparently i gave you too much credit.

Anonymous said...

i can throw facts at you all day supporting my side and i dont think ill ever change your mind. so do i go through the effort and feel like im talking to myself or move on and enjoy my day watching the paint on the wall dry? sorry, the paint seems like better company.

and i didnt call you an asshole because you disagree with me. i could sit here all day giving you facts to support that statement as well.

Lance said...

pitseleh: let me see if i've got this straight. my expression of an opinion makes me a boorish, ignorant, stubborn asshole, but you're snap judgment of me is spot on?

i'm curious as to what makes you resort to this level of discourse so quickly. i really can't see that i've made any sort of personal statements about you.

Patrick Bateman said...


I can't stand these people who have problem X and call it a "disease" when it's really just their fragile mind and weak will. That guy struggling to finish his Ph.D. while living with cerebral palsy has a real disease and real problems. That imbecile who is eating himself to death or that girl starving herself don't deserve any pity. They know exactly how to fix their problems.

jz said...

All analogies are incomplete; like comparing war-time survival to one's immunity from pervasive advertising. What's the point?

Thank you for pointing these out. I LOVE LOVE LOVE these. You seem to lash out at the failure to be "strong". That's ideal, but how many *strong* middle school boys and girls do you know who can understand the role of advertising?

Girls and women are exposed to tens of thousands of promotional messages that they have ugly hair, teeth, faces, breasts. How many were Ann Frank exposed to? Women are part owners in the airbrush-advertising complexes, so I'm not blaming men.

Men add to the *pressure* with their porn-derived entitlement attitudes and mean comments and judgments.

Perhaps what you'd like is for women to have high esteem, immunity from pervasive advertising, and be naturally attractive. Realistic?

A few kind words from men or other women can help.

jz said...

Images from Playboy and Maxim are no antidotes, being equally unrealistic and photo-shopped.

Much more realistic images are found in historical art. Fascinating to study nudes from Baroque, Renaissance, and 1800s. I stared in disbelief at Venus de Milo @ Louvre to realize that her body shape is exactly like mine. We can influence young girls' self images by pointing to historical nudes.

Your solution: "teach people to be individuals". No argument, but strong self-esteem in other areas doesn't always cross over to body image; best to address it directly.

jz said...

the way to combat this is to teach people to be individuals and to embrace their own vlaues and tastes......(and)......also, this has very little to do with what men like. "

Do you see the contradiction here?

Lance said...

jz: my post makes two simple points:

1. girls today do NOT have it harder than ever, at least not the overwhelming majority of those in the developed world. i have sympathy for all the social pressure, but overstating the issue is not going to help.

2. there's two choices here. you can attempt to get eveyone on board and change the message that's bein put out, or you can teach your kids, by lesson and by example to be strong individuals. i'm in favor of the latter. my problem with the ads is that they just replace one set of media manipulations with another.

Peregrine John said...

In other words, no one respects sheep. If you want respect and individuality, you stop bleating, stop following, and stop getting fleeced regularly.

Begin like this: "I am not entitled, I am not a victim, and my actions are mine." No one said it was easy to be free. But they're your chains; it's your choice.