So, you’ve probably seen it. The video of the “hot chicks” of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Put together because two men, having an obviously politically rich conversation about the movement, swooned:
“Wow, seeing all those super smart hot chicks at the protest makes me want to be there.”
“Hmmm… Yeah, let’s go with that.” (see vimeo.com/30476100)
The video, full of close-ups of lips, eyes, necks, and women sweeping their hair back in slow motion, frames women’s role in the movement as attractant–or reward–for men’s participation.
Sure, women are given some voice in the video. But, truthfully, it’s not the purpose of the video. It’s just a little coloring to give the illusion of substance. The video, after all, is about “hot chicks.”
Several years ago, I gave an unflinching anti-porn presentation for a local organization. A few years later, I met a man who had been at that presentation who said he had really been impressed. However, a bit more conversation revealed that what had impressed him was my “attractive hands” and that he hadn’t heard a thing I had said.
Do the men in the Occupy Wall Street movement know why women are participating in the protests? Do they have any understanding why, as 51% of the 99%, with political needs and interests that do not always intersect with men’s, women are involved as women?
These are important questions. Yes, the mantra is We are the 99%, which sounds seductively inclusive. However, women have participated in many, many movements only to find after the dust settled that men didn’t have women’s equality in mind as part of the change. But the men did sure enjoy having those pretty things around.