This Was a Banner Week For Lame-Ass Policing of Women’s Appearances
Judging by this week’s headlines, it appears The Patriarchy might’ve had one vodka Redbull too many, because over the last few days, it went in extra hard on one of its favorite pastimes: shaming women! Slut shaming, body shaming, hair shaming, question shaming. Might want to make sure you’re sitting down for this one, with nothing breakable nearby. And a stiff drink might help.
Bill O’Reilly Mocks Representative Queen Maxine Waters’ Hair
After the 78-year-old Representative dragged the Trump administration, referring to them as the “Kremlin klan,” Bill O’Reilly remarked on his show that "I didn't hear a word she said. I was looking at the James Brown wig." While this isn’t necessarily surprising coming from the man who once referred to the ACLU as a terrorist group, Congresswoman Waters’ response was incredible:
O’Reilly has since apologized for his remark; meanwhile, Waters’ reputation as a badass politician continues to grow. In times like these, one can’t help but be reminded of that poetic line in Nicki Minaj’s verse in “Side to Side”: “I give zero fucks / and I got zero chill in me.”
Sean Spicer Berates Journalist April Ryan
Also to be filed under “Where Do These Dudes Get Off?”: The White House Press Secretary famous for not being able to keep his cool and for swallowing an absurd amount of cinnamon chewing gum every day took his sass factor to another level on Tuesday in a heated exchange with journalist April Ryan, a black woman who has been a part of the White House press room on many occasions (and she’s the same journalist President Trump asked to set up a meeting with the Congressional Black Caucus, because he assumed she must know all of them). After a tense exchange over Ryan’s questions covering the Russia investigation, Spicer seemed to take her hardline questioning personally, demanding that she “stop shaking her head.”
In a speech later that afternoon, Hillary Clinton addressed both what happened with Ryan and with Congresswoman Waters, adding that “Too many women, especially women of color, have had a lifetime of practice taking precisely these kinds of indignities in stride. But why should we have to? And any woman who thinks this couldn’t be directed at her is living in a dream world.”
Paging All Sexist Airline Policies; Your Flight Is About to Depart
Three teen girls were denied boarding a United flight earlier this week on account of what they were wearing: spandex leggings. This sparked significant outrage across the Internet, though United has defended itself, saying that it’s a policy enforced for passengers that are “pass travelers,” which usually means you are a friend or family of an employee. To be fair, as the daughter of a former Delta employee, I can confirm that there are indeed rules like this in place. Right up to my teenage years, women and girls were required to wear stockings or tights under skirts and dresses on Delta flights—so, no bare legs—which was super lame. Dress it up in all the corporate-speak you want to, but policies like these send a message: Your female body is an inappropriate distraction. Stretchy pants have been the subject of oversexualizing women before (remember the guy in Montana who wanted to outlaw yoga pants?), so it’s understandable that this would get some serious side eye from stretch-pants loving individuals (which is all of us, no?). Delta has since relaxed its pass-rider dress code significantly, and in fact, I wear leggings on the reg because it is ideal travel attire—these girls knew what they were doing. United, it’s time for a policy update.
School Admins Try to Slut-Shame Prom Attendees and the Internet Claps Back
A high school in Jacksonville, Florida caught some heat for the visuals it posted in hallways depicting what an acceptable prom dress is and isn’t. A shot of a covered-up dress reads “Going to Stanton Prom? Yes you are. Good Girl,” where pictures of dresses with an exposed mid-riff, a plunging neckline and a backless cut reads “Going to Prom? No you’re not.” Students were upset over being addressed “as if we’re some dogs,” @hayleyyporcaro tweeted, not to mention that two of the pictures showing the unacceptable dresses appear to be on the bodies of darker-skinned girls, whereas the “good girl” dress is on a white girl. Amidst the backlash, the posters have been taken down, and Seventeen has reported that the dress code will not be enforced, according to a school district representative. Chalk one up for teenage feminists.