I am officially ashamed of my job. The organization that prints and distributes the local newspaper that I deliver–that people pay good money for–needs to take a good, close look at itself and its practices. It’s no wonder subscriptions are on the decline. I’ve gone from having twenty-three customers to thirteen in the three years I’ve been doing the job.
Today, however, takes the proverbial cake.
The article in question (no, I won’t cite it for the following reasons: a) I don’t want to advertise publicly where I live; b) the article is conspicuously absent from their website anyway; and c) I still work for them. For now.) is about a recent awareness-raising campaign entitled “Slut Walk.”
The annual Slut Walk, if you haven’t heard about it, is a tool to teach people (men mostly) that dressing like a slut isn’t an invitation for sexual assault. This, in and of itself, is a reasonable lesson to learn. You can read more about it here: http://www.slutwalktoronto.com/about/how if you’re interested.
But it’s not the Walk itself that I have a problem with – it’s the article.
Apart from numerous grammatical errors, (“you’re” instead of “your”? Come on!) which point blatantly at the fact that if an editor even read through the article he needs to be fired clean out of the editorial cannon, there are the questionable quotes from the event’s organizer, in which she states that the word ‘slut’ need not be a bad word, and that, “It just describes someone that is sexually promiscuous, someone who is maybe for work or for personal reasons and that is not a bad thing.”
Then she goes on to say people are complaining that the Walk isn’t child-friendly, but that, “…there is not a whole lot of scantily clad people…” this directly below a picture of a woman with the middle of her t-shirt cut out, revealing her bare breasts (and no, it’s not edited) and then, “…I think there is only one sign with profanity…there is nothing here that you wouldn’t see on TV or hear on the radio.”
Where is anything child-friendly about this scenario? On one hand you have a legitimate message – clothes don’t invite rape – and then on the other hand you have a newspaper quoting an organizer saying it’s okay for girls to be sexually promiscuous for work or personal reasons or whatever. Not only that, she’s blind!
And so is the editor of my damned paper!!!
Aside from finding a way to get a note to the author of the article to ask him if he grammars much, I’ve a good mind to write a letter to the editor.
I just don’t know where to start.