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Women’s Rights Essay, Ad at Odds

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While on my lunch break I read the poignant Back Page essay called "Maternity Warden" by Zack Budryk. Pregnant myself, I was horrified to be reminded about the practice of shackling female inmates during childbirth, and agreed that the demonization that took place toward the New York maid who accused the then-International Monetary Fund director, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, of sexual assault was a couple of leaps backward in time.

I was reminded of the cruelty that words can have such as mockingly calling the hearings focusing on regulations to prevent sexual violence in immigration-detention centers "Holiday on Ice," and I felt a renewed sense of wanting to become involved in women's rights issues again, and my place in history and unification as a woman and how much power resides in each and every one of us.

Feeling a sense of awareness, I closed Style Weekly ready to finish my day at work, where I was met with an image of an oversexed 'tween teen featured in an American Apparel ad and every democratic thought in my body left. Problems such as those detailed in Budryk's article can't possibly be taken seriously when I'm met with these images on the back page of such an article.

I'm no square but when met with images such as these, I long for the heroin-chic-waif-inspired days of modeling that were once so controversial. When images such as these become commonplace and our teens become oversexualized fantasies, it should only be expected that it is acceptable for crimes against women to occur.

Jamie Weinstein



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