Femininity

While doing research for our founder’s new media business endeavor, Knockout Times, which launched last week, she happened upon this amazing piece by Hilary Oliver, a woman worthy of the #girlswithguts hashtag in her own right.  We will keep up our fight to prove women don’t have to choose to be badass <OR> beautiful . . . we believe it’s possible to embody both qualities.  Read Hilary’s piece and watch REI’s short film below.

It’s the harassing voicemail at the beginning of the film that I just can’t shake—it’s so creepy. Have you seen Follow Through yet? It’s the new short film from REI and Duct Tape Then Beer about Caroline Gleich, a pro ski mountaineer who uses her social media platform to build her brand and business as an athlete. The film opens with a voicemail left for Caroline by a stalker, criticizing her as an athlete and public figure. That voicemail has echoed in my head for the last 48 hours as I’ve tried to figure out why—why would someone do that? Why do people find so much to criticize about Caroline and other women in similar positions? Why are we still doing this? Much of it seems to come down to this: We cannot, it seems, accept a woman who is badass and also attractive. Women in our culture must choose one or the other.  Read the full piece here.

Fashion 

RiRi in a Canadian tuxedo.  That is all.

ELLE

Fitness 

Rather than address physical fitness in this #4FsSake, we’d like to bring to light the importance of the fitness of humanity.  Thank you Nate Boyer not only for your service, but also for penning this gutsy letter to Trump, Kaepernick, NFL and America.   Two excerpts follow:

That’s how it all started with Colin and I, neither of us knew that kneeling would be the result of our conversation. Colin wanted to sit, I wanted him to stand, and so we found a common ground on a knee alongside his teammates.  I believe that progress and real change happens in this world when you reach across the divide, you build a bridge, you swallow your pride, you open your mind, you embrace what you don’t understand, and ultimately you surrender.

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One great thing about freedom is that you get to choose everyday how you treat your neighbor. This IS the best country in the world, but we can always do better. I’m laying it all out there because I have to, I swore to defend this land and its people, and I will die trying.

Banksy: I see humans but no humanity.

Flair

We’re pretty sure you know where we stand on the “Harvey” situation, so we’ll set that aside.   We won’t brush it under the rug but will use the controversy as a reason to revisit another very serious issue facing women today as it has since the beginning of time: does a woman’s value have anything to do with how sexy or sexual she is or isn’t?  Does a woman have to neuter her sexuality in order to be deemed worthy of respect?  Does age play a factor in how sexy or sexual a woman can behave and still command respect?

We appreciate how Entity Magazine explored this tug of war on being celebrated versus shamed for a woman’s sexuality a couple of years ago in Katherine Mound’s piece, Women in Music Videos: Self-Objectifying or Objectively Empowering?  Our favorite snippets follow:

A woman’s value has nothing to do with how she presents her body, how much skin is shown, how many people see it, touch it or have the ability to appreciate it. Assigning value based on a woman’s degree of sexuality only serves to objectify women, using their bodies and sexuality as variables to determine their level of purity or corruption.

Because of this stigmatization of female bodies and sexuality, we need strong female figures who proudly proclaim their own sexuality and show other women that they can do the same. Yet, the problem reaches a full-circle when these women are called out for “self-objectifying”, as if their intentions in depicting themselves sexually devalues them into objects. Yet, these women are often called sell-outs, untalented and exploitative of women’s bodies, as if you can’t be sexual without being a sex object.

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Women should neither feel ashamed of displaying their bodies with pride nor obligated to share with someone if they don’t want to. Sexuality doesn’t devalue women, but labeling women who are more sexual than others as “animals” does.

One week after Nicki Minaj ignited the Internet with the cover art for her single “Anaconda,” she released it again. This time, there was a song attached to the photo. There was also a “Parental Advisory” sticker right over the song and the controversy’s main subject: Minaj’s ass. Everything about this is brilliant.