Categorized | News

Boobs Aren’t News

A couple of weeks ago I stumbled upon a campaign that was petitioning against Page 3 in The Sun newspaper. Headed by Lucy-Anne Holmes, this campaign has taken off and received support from thousands of people including celebrities such as Eliza Doolittle, Jennifer Saunders, Chris Addison and Caitlin Moran. The petition has also been signed by mothers and fathers alike, all disgusted by the idea that their children could grow up believing that the objectification of women is normal. And who can blame them? The Sun considers itself to be a ‘family’ newspaper. In what family is it acceptable to pass the paper round at breakfast so that everyone can get a good eyeful of Kelly, 21, from Daventry?
Previous efforts to cut Page 3 from newspapers were made in 1986 by Clare Short, a Labour party MP. The suggestion was shot down by MPs in the House of Commons and Short was nicknamed “killjoy Clare” by The Sun. Although her proposition attracted support from many women, it also attracted a shocking smear campaign from The Sun, quoting Page 3 girls who branded Short as, “fat”, “ugly” and “jealous” of them. These childish insults were only fuelled by the tabloid asking, “And who are we to disagree with their verdict?” The Sun’s immature reaction succeeded in ridiculing both the idea of removing Page 3 and also Short herself, with continued humiliation years later, when Short left Government, through the arrival of “half-dressed people” waiting outside the house that she shares with her elderly mother. This is not the behaviour of a ‘family’ newspaper.
We are in a truly sad and pathetic time if we allow this misogyny to continue to pollute our newspapers; how has it become acceptable for images of half-naked girl likes Danni, 25, from Coventry or Courtnie, 21, from Plymouth to stare out at families across the nation? There they are in nothing more than a skimpy pair of knickers and a necklace, conspicuously stuffed between recent news stories such as the attack of Malala Yousafzai, a 14 year old Pakistani campaigner, shot because of her campaign for education for girls, or the court hearing of Mark Bridger, accused of murdering 5 year old, April Jones. There are more important things that should be published, face it; boobs aren’t news.
If Page 3 isn’t an example of modern day sexism and chauvinism then please, direct me to the nearest male equivalent. Where are the photographs of nearly naked men covering our newspapers? Oh wait, there are none. So, if you want to take a stand against such objectification and you believe that women deserve more than to be represented by Amii, 22, from Birmingham, then why not support the No More Page 3 campaign by signing the petition at the site below, like it on Facebook, follow it on Twitter and use the hash-tag, #NoMorePage3 to show others about the campaign. It’s time to take a stand and turn your back on Page 3.


By Meaghan Spencer

  • S.N. October 12, 2012 at 7:05 pm

    Terrific article and I’m really glad that The Bottom Line are publicising this campaign.
    In my opinion, Page 3 is pretty despicable and a reflection of a society which not only allows but encourages the sexual objectification of women. There has been an increase in the amount of sexual harassment cases reported by women in the past few years and I honestly think that publications like The Sun, which for some reason is one of the most popular newspapers in the country, have contributed to this increase and they encourage and normalise sexual objectification.

    As an upper sixth student in preparation for university next year, I have been researching information about different societies, union and clubs at university from websites such as The Student Room, a very useful forum known to be popular amongst students. Whilst looking through The Student Room, I was shocked by the amount of threads I saw from male students enquiring about the ‘lad culture’ that exists at university and which universities are the best for ‘picking up girls’. What MP’s in the House of Common’s didn’t realise in 1986 (and arguably still haven’t got into their heads today) is how much society and culture influences the individual. The Sun is a newspaper sold in every newsagent in the country, so therefore is it any surprise that some children growing up and seeing images of naked girls in suggestive poses for The Sun turn out to be sexist with very little, if any, respect for women. It’s disgraceful that neither the PM nor Maria Miller (the Minister for Women and Equalities) have spoken of their support for this campaign.

    Page 3 should have never been created. It isn’t a feature or news. It represents this undercurrent of misogyny that still exists in our society and I will be ecstatic the day it dies.
    Thank you Meaghan for writing what I believe to be the most important article published as of yet by The Bottom Line. Hopefully, people reading will sign the petition and end the farce that is Page 3 once and for all.

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