Hustler being Despicable. Again: Sexualisation is Silencing Petition

Hustler being disgusting and despicable is par for the course. Larry Flynt is horrible, vicious misogynist. I would like to say that there is nothing he can do which would surprise me but it would be a lie. I am not going to link any images because, frankly, I find them so triggering that I refuse to have them linked on my blog nor do I want to increase traffic to any misogynistic site which might have the images linked. I would like to see publications like Hustler banned and their proprietors and editors required to pay huge fines to support rape crisis centres and shelters.

Hustler’s current attack on conservative S.E. Cupp, rather like the attacks on Tory MP Louise Mensch, is based entirely on misogynistic constructions of sex/gender and the punishment of women who dare to have opinions and make them publicly. Now, personally, I don’t agree with pretty much anything Cupp and Mensch say. I find their views abhorrent but finding their views abhorrent is not an excuse to sexually humiliate, bully and intimidate women. It is this kind of behaviour that silences women. It encourages and perpetuates the rape culture which violates the lives of so many women and children. Allowing this kind of smear campaign to go unchallenged is a passive affirmation that it is acceptable to treat women in this manner.

As such, I have signed the petition by the Women’s Media Center denouncing Hustler for its vile attack on S.E. Cupp. The media release from the Women’s Media Center is below:

Petition

Gloria Steinem, Women’s Media Center Denounce Hustler Attack On Conservative Commentator

May 24, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT:

CRISTAL WILLIAMS CHANCELLOR, MEDIA RELATIONS MANAGER

THE WOMEN’S MEDIA CENTER

202-587-1636

CRISTAL@WOMENSMEDIACENTER.COM

Women’s Media Center Condemns Hustler’s Sexist Attack on S.E. Cupp

Statement from the Women’s Media Center:

Hustler Magazine has posted a picture of conservative commentator S.E. Cupp with a Photoshopped penis in her mouth. This is a prime example of sexism against women in the media and the Women’s Media Center stands with S.E. Cupp and women everywhere in condemning Hustler.

Gloria Steinem, Co-Founder of the Women’s Media Center, said of the incident, “As another of the countless women who have been attacked, defamed and endangered by Larry Flynt and Hustler over the years, I am proud to stand with S.E. Cupp and defend her right to free speech and respect. One has only to look at Flynt’s record of woman-hatred and the depiction of sexualized violence against females–including children, as in such famous Hustler features as ‘Chester the Molester’–to see that the only thing more damaging than Flynt’s hatred would be his approval.”

Robin Morgan, also co-Founder of the Women’s Media Center, had this to say: “In Hustler’s worst degrading, woman-hating tradition, the magazine has done it yet again. Larry Flynt and the editors of Hustler–with the apparent IQs of inebriated gnats–clearly cannot grasp a basic fact: When you demean one woman, you demean us all, and all of us fight back. The Women’s Media Center was founded to confront precisely this kind of vicious, unfunny, destructive representation of female human beings–whatever their political position, and whether or not we agree with it.”

Julie Burton, President of the Women’s Media Center, said, “It makes no difference that Larry Flynt thinks he is opposing the defunding of Planned Parenthood. His crude, sexist attacks on Ms. Cupp demean all women–and undermine his claim to support women’s rights. As a pro-choice, feminist organization, we do not agree with Ms. Cupp’s stance. But the sexualization of women in the media is not a partisan issue–it’s an ongoing problem that makes it harder for women on both sides of the aisle to run for office and be taken seriously as political commentators and media makers.”

“At nearly the exact same time last year, the Women’s Media Center successfully defended conservative talk show host Laura Ingraham when Ed Schultz called her a ‘slut,’” Burton said. “Our stance has always been that from Gloria Steinem to Sarah Palin, a woman’s political opinions, whatever they are, should never be met with sexist attacks.”

“We urge all men and women, regardless of your political beliefs, to stand up against the misogyny Hustler wants the country to accept as par for the course,” Burton said. “The only way our culture moves against sexism is when stand as one and say this is unacceptable.”

To join the Women’s Media Center’s call to stand with Ms. Cupp and against media misogyny, sign the petition at www.change.org/standwithSE

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