The following AP article appeared on Yahoo News yesterday:
Topless protesters take on elite Davos forum.
DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) — Three women angry over sexism and male domination of the world economy ripped off their shirts and tried to force their way into a gathering of corporate elites in a Swiss resort.
Predictably, they failed. The ubiquitous and huge security force policing the World Economic Forum in Davos carried the women away, kicking and screaming.
The women, from Ukrainian feminist activist group FEMEN, scaled a fence and set off pink flares in the protest Saturday. Their chests were painted with "SOS Davos," as they sought to call attention to poverty of women around the world.
Critics of the Davos forum say the business and political leaders at the gathering spend too little time doing concrete things to solve the world's problems and help the needy.
I've never quite gotten the logic of these protests. How does taking your top off send the message that women are in poverty? To me, it sends the message, "Look at my tits."
It's also a little mystifying that a group which wants equality between men and women demonstrates for that cause by highlighting a difference between the sexes. (Or, if you will, by headlighting those differences.)
When you think about it, going to Davos to complain that these business and political leaders aren't doing enough is predicated on an extremely anti-feminist assumption to begin with: that women need those big, strong, smart men to help them achieve "equality."
Were the women of FEMEN in fact only demonstrating their own intellectual poverty?
Wouldn't it make more sense for these women to be doing the hard work of creating their own businesses, and making money, and then, if they choose to, giving that money away to the needy?
Nah, showing off your tits is more fun.
The women who participate in these protests are almost exclusively young and attractive. Could it be that they get a certain exhibitionistic thrill from taking their clothes off in public, but feel the need to hide that urge behind the patina of a noble cause?
Would less attractive breasts send a different message?
It is true that these women get more attention than they otherwise would by getting naked. And it seems unlikely that these women would otherwise be attracting attention for their clarity or profundity of thought. But while they attract attention, do they really further their causes?
Wikipedia has this to say about the group:
FEMEN is a feminist Ukrainian protest group based in Kiev, founded in 2008. The organization became internationally known for organizing topless protests against sex tourists, religious institutions, international marriage agencies, sexism and other social, national and international topics.....Some of the goals of the organization are: "To develop leadership, intellectual and moral qualities of the young women in Ukraine" and "To build up the image of Ukraine, the country with great opportunities for women".
Here are a few examples of these young women developing their leadership, intellectual, and moral qualities:
(Protesting the Ukrainian President in Kiev.)
(Protesting Euro corruption)
A question for the men: do these pictures leave you thinking, wow, we really have to bring an end to Euro corruption, and gee, that Berlusconi really is horrible? Or were your thoughts perhaps less pure?
After spending half an hour researching this post on Google Image, I can't help but notice that most of these women look like.....strippers.
And there's nothing quite like a stripper who takes herself too seriously.