Tuesday, June 14, 2016

London Bans "Unrealistic Body Images" From Transport System

   Interesting ambiguity in that title...
   Whelp, I'm not going to write a screed about why this is insane... Nope. Not gonna do it...

   Note that acknowledging that this is nuts does not entail that I think that there's no problem with barraging people (especially women, especially girls) with representations of extremely beautiful women all the time. I do think that's something worth reflecting on a bit. Feminists tend to blow the problem out of proportion and say crazy things about it...but that's par for that course. Nevertheless, it's a feature of the contemporary world that, IMO, does bear reflecting on.  (Is that sentence grammatical?)
   Nevertheless, people should be rioting in the streets over such a ban. I have nothing but contempt for advertisements and ad men. But this seems to be an obviously indefensible ban on expression.
   Also--as is often the case--they seem to be mixing in puritanical reasons (people didn't want to see pictures of women in revealing clothes) with "body image" stuff. Both are reasons that feminism deploys, but I don't think that really unifies the points enough. Sounds to me like the decision was arrived at first, and then whatever reasons happen to have been handy were flung about.
   Khan himself is Muslim; I haven't seen anything making it clear whether that played a role in the decision. The far/religious right and the far left tend to agree on a lot, and they tend to agree about provocative pictures. So that might be in play.
   At any rate, I think it's clear that this ban is nuts. Which is not to say that I'm not willing to listen to arguments. But the ones I've heard thus far aren't powerful enough to support such constraints on expression.


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