October 3, 2012 by Darlene McC
Jennifer Livingston is a news anchor of the CBS affiliate in La Crosse, Wisconsin, and she has something very important to tell you:
There is not a thing about this video that fails to make me proud of this woman; and I couldn’t agree more with what she has to say. That email wasn’t about her (okay, it WAS actually about her, but bare with me), that email about about some booger-picking, crotch-scratching (in public), knuckle dragger who thinks it’s okay to comment in passing on women’s bodies. He’s developed as a human being with the notion that he can rail on the women that come across his cross-eyed, limp-jawed gaze and that they should somehow be thankful for his insight.
Not only did Jennifer put this douche in his place, she did so while expanding to a greater point about young women, self-esteem, and bullying; and did it in a gracious and eloquent way.
The incident as a whole brings up a deeper conversation: why do we feel like we have the right, as a society, to comment on the bodies of others; regardless of the content of those comments? Every week People and Us magazines have sections on “stars” that are too thin, too thick, have lost weight or put some on – giving us all a color commentary play-by-play on some other woman’s bodies. Even complements come charged with the implication that the body that woman had before was somehow less desirable than the one she has now. Our collective consciousness has been programmed to hurrah a 5lb weight decrease; but how do you know she was even trying for that? What if she’s been sick or you’re fueling an eating disorder? And as Jennifer points out in her video, by asserting the right to comment on another persons body you are teaching young people they have that right, too.
What do ya’ll think? Do you have your own stories in this vein, good or bad? I think there’s a broader discussion here that’s worth having.