This Is a Real News Story:
There is a picture, so I don’t fault you for thinking the worst. But honestly, I read the article. And I must admit that I’m a little torn.
The story is about a group called Femen, led by a Ukrainian feminist, Inna Shevchenko. She told The Guardian, “We are taking off our clothes so people can see that we have no weapons except our bodies. It’s a powerful way to fight in a man’s world. We live with men’s domination and this is the only way to provoke them, the only way to get attention.”
On the one hand, naked Ukrainian women teaching French women how to be self-declared “topless warriors” doesn’t sound like such a bad idea. But on the other hand, what does it say about society that an increasing number of women believe they can only get our attention on issues like female exploitation, the perils of Sharia law, dictatorship and over-reaching religion by getting naked?
The question asked in the Guardian article is whether anyone even cares about naked breasts anymore. Across the pond there in London, there’s a certain British newspaper with its “Page 3 girls.” And the People Magazine-like glossies in Europe are chock full of carefree topless women.
But in this YouTube-saturated, social media-dominant time, it seems that only the most outrageous acts are pulling people out of their stupor.
Consider the case of the Russian female punk collective Pussy Riot. While there have been tens of thousands taking to the streets in Russia against what they see as an increasingly authoritarian Vladimir Putin, it wasn’t until the case of “the girls” that many began paying attention.
The women were sentenced to two years in jail for their “punk prayer” in a revered Moscow cathedral. Offensive, perhaps, but there are real questions about whether the punishment fits the crime of “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred.”
Nadya: We knew we were in a kind of risk zone. But we deliberately did things that were peaceful and nonviolent and didn’t even damage other people’s property. We specifically made sure not to break any laws. When people asked us if we were afraid, we’d say, “We’re not doing anything illegal—and if someone decides to put us in jail, they’ll do it anyway.”
As the saying goes, “Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History.”