Sometime last week I came across the news on Facebook that page 3 had been scrapped. “No more having to be confronted with men gawping at women’s breasts first thing in the morning,” my cousin wrote. I rolled my eyes, this isn’t true feminism I thought to myself, this is women being uptight, women being old-fashioned.
I came to this conclusion over a period of time and rightly so when giving any opinion on a current event, you should do your research. The page 3 campaign has its own website, (which I urge everyone reading to check out, presumably if you have nothing better to do), which provides “6 reasons why page 3 has to go.” None of these are particularly thought-provoking, in fact I recall feeling as if I’d been transported back to the Victorian Era when women were seen to “know their place” when reading them. How ironic.
Firstly they say how page 3 is “sexist” towards women, and how women should not be “celebrated” for their breasts. Moreover they basically insinuate that the Sun promotes rape and sexual violence towards women by including page 3 in their newspaper, and the idea that a woman’s “primary role” is to “serve men sexually.” The campaign also goes on to say this should not be an image projected to children, in a family newspaper, because it doesn’t teach them anything, and that it’s not ok to view women in this way. Pretty extreme stuff, which to be honest, in my opinion, has just blown a bit of soft pornography out the context waters.
I think we should all be aware that if anything women being able to appear topless in a newspaper is actually liberating. If a woman has a nice pair of breasts why shouldn’t she be allowed to make a living out of flaunting them as a glamour model? I don’t see women complaining when a man decides to take his shirt off and flaunt his rather chiselled physique professionally. Doesn’t mean that women is going to rape that man, doesn’t mean that a woman sees all men as sexual objects. It’s the same principle and if anything this campaign is a censorship scheme which revokes women’s equality and their rights.
What frustrates me even more is the fact that they play on the “innocent children” principle as well. All children see their mother’s breasts when they are a child, all children should know why women have breasts and to be perfectly honest I don’t remember even knowing what a newspaper was when I was a child, let alone remembering what was inside one. There are worse things in newspapers than a bit of soft pornography, there are other things more horrific that children are exposed to every day in the media.
Therefore I feel that trying to scrap page 3 is not a demonstration of feminism and is in fact quite the opposite. Feminists should be taking the time to promote other acts feminism, like women liberating their bodies and Emma Watson in the UN, things that would actually make a difference to people’s lives. If you don’t like page 3, don’t buy the Sun it’s as simple as that.