And then there's the "...wat?" moments.
Since I don't pay much attention to sports, I didn't hear until today that there was controversy about an American athlete, Lindsey Vonn. I know she's a skier, and I know she's cute. That was pretty much it. So I hear people talking at work about how some people are protesting her appearance on the cover of the current Sports Illustrated as being exploitative.
You know, the same Sport Illustrated that has a yearly issue with nearly naked or truly naked but strategically covered, painted, and airbrushed women with swimwear. Nope, that's not what everyone's saying is exploitative, the skier on the cover is.
So I decided to check out the controversy. You can see the cover here. It's a mock action shot. Because, you know, if you try to take a picture of an actual skier in action in this pose, all you'll get is a blur.
Apparently, some people are looking at the downhill racing pose Vonn is in and are saying it is sexually suggestive. As opposed to, say, the pure and wholesome clothes worn by the girls doing gymnastics. Remember that picture of the celebratory hug by the female beach volleyball players? The attention that garnered was taken completely out of context, but there was nothing they could do. If people are determined to to see something sexual, you could dress a woman in a burka and they'll still see it (when I was in high school, one kid got around the school rules of no cheesecake photos on his locker door by putting up pictures of women in bras and panties from a Sears catalog. I had to give him an E for Effort). This also ignores that sports and sex are pretty much intertwined. Cheerleaders at games. Danica Patrick. Fitness competitions that are less about athletic stamina and more about modeling. This seems relatively harmless to me, and is certainly plausible to say is a sporty shot instead of cheesecake. Why focus on this?
Besides...maybe I've just seen too much porn and run into too much Rule 34, but I don't really think this is all that sexy. Is she cute? Yes. Is she pretty? Absolutely. But something that inspires the same feelings in me that Kylie Minogue and Jessica Alba do? Nope. Not even close. If we want to see women in poses that excite our sexual imaginations, we know where to find them. And a celebrity puff piece about a skier is not the first stop on the train.
There's real exploitation out there, folks. Focus on the real problems, will ya?