February 7, 2012
Booth Babes? Fuck You.

I’m late to the party. I’ve been quietly seething about this issue since it all started at the last CES. Much ink was poured into it, and I fully expect my voice to be lost in the cacophony. But hear me out for a second. I’m not condoning Gary Shapiro's dismissive and sexist stance. It's pathetic and all too common, but I know we can't change him, so my battle lies elsewhere: I've been angry about our own weird, complicated, ambivalent attitudes towards it.

The excellent and talented Jessie said it well in her Lament of the Delicious Librarian post, which I’ve only just read and which prompted me to write this. Because I agree: Fuck. You.

Here’s the deal. Women’s lib means we have a choice that no one, not even the most self-righteous feminist, gets to deny us.

We don’t get to judge one another on our appearance. It goes both ways: beauties who flaunt it and tomboys who don’t. We don’t get to assume gorgeous women standing in booths must be victims. Men don’t get to decide that we’re idiots just because we’re hot, and say to us, in total impunity: “you fooled me,” like it’s our fault they didn’t notice how sharp we are.

If you fear men won’t take you seriously because other females wear tight clothes, then you’ve got bigger issues. If sexy girls make you uncomfortable, let us be clear: that’s your own bullshit. I don’t feel demeaned. I don’t feel embarrassed by the goddess in a bikini, because it’s her decision. On the contrary, we should be high-fiving each other, celebrating that she can make it, that she doesn’t get spat on, buried under a burqa, or stoned to death. She has assets and isn’t afraid to use them? More power to her.

She may be a model or an engineer. She’s no victim. She’s working hard. She probably makes more money than you do. You don’t know anything about her. It’s not your place to mind her business, or feel superior. So fuck you and your self-aggrandizing disapproval. Fuck you hard for slut-shaming her, for acting like she must be rescued from herself, and for making it about your own hang-ups.

— From SF.

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    This. Also, guess what, that bullshit? That bullshit demeans me as well. It demeans me as an individual. It demeans my...
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