EMC news – An Ottawa rock radio station has posted a picture on its Facebook page that some people say crosses a line and a university instructor calls “Stone Age.”
CHEZ posted a posed rear view photo of a woman wearing a skirt. Written on her leg are assessments of her virtue based on how high the skirt is hiked up her leg.
The lowest word, written on the lower calf, is “matronly,” and nearer the model’s buttocks are the words “asking for it,” “slut” and “whore.”
The page has attracted comments on the Facebook page that criticize the posting.
“Asking for it? Really? It’s this type of sexism that allows girls to get raped. ‘girl was asking for it’ is not a defense. Nothing is asking for it, unless you’re literally asking for it. This is disgusting,” writes one visitor to the Facebook page.
Another poster writes, “”Asking for it”? Asking for what, exactly? Sexual abuse? How is a woman’s skirt length a cause/excuse for rape? This post is straight up sexist.”
Some posts simply compliment the model’s legs.
Carleton University associate professor Doris Buss studies social issues and sexual violence. She called the radio station’s posting “regressive.”
“It’s Stone Age,” Buss said after reviewing the picture. “No one ever asks to be raped.”
She said that when viewed as a political statement, the picture alone “calls attention to expectations placed on women.” But Buss added that the introductory paragraph added by someone at CHEZ – “girls in this city could use this reference guide” – changes any political meaning into social criticism.
“The words are calling on women to judge themselves,” Buss said. “Women’s behaviour is still regulated.”
CHEZ program director Gayle Zarbatany called the station’s Facebook page is “an extension of what we do on the radio.”
“The majority comes from other websites and from the listeners,” Zarbatany said of the content of the Facebook page.
She said staff who post material should not post “racist, sexist or degrading” material, adding that the picture of the model with words written on her leg does not cross that line.