Can you think of anything more sexist than Marilyn Monroe?
Multiple protests, a popular petition, a legal action and a small fire have not been enough to stop the city of Palm Springs from installing a supersized and hyper-sexualised Marilyn Monroe sculpture on a public site next to the Palm Springs Art Museum. On Sunday night city council members presided over a dedication ceremony for the sculpture by John Seward Johnson II known as Forever Marilyn—or #metoomarilyn by those who find it exploitative—that shows the actress with her white dress flying up above her waist. There was no damage from the fire, which took place ten days ago, when welders were working on sculpture and some bubble wrap started smoking.
The ceremony came complete with a flyover from a vintage Second World War plane from the Palm Springs Air Museum, known as a North American T-28A Trojan. But no leaders of the art museum, which now has a view of Marilyn’s exposed underwear, were an official part of the ceremony. The last four directors of the museum have publicly opposed its placement there, as have a number of activist groups, including Crema (the Committee for the Relocation of Marilyn) and the Women’s March L.A.
Both of these groups sent protestors to the dedication ceremony on Sunday, with chants that drowned out some of the speakers. “It was nonstop chanting, both pro and con—you couldn’t really hear the speakers,” said modernism connoisseur Chris Menrad, who co-founded Crema with the Palm Springs fashion designer Trina Turk. “The goal of us being there was basically to disrupt the event and communicate our displeasure.”
The city council, which voted unanimously to place Marilyn in this location after it was bought by a city-funded tourism agency (it previously made a cameo downtown in 2012-14) has repeatedly given a boost in tourism as their reason for doing so. Reached by phone in Santa Fe, Turk counters that the only thing that the sculpture has accomplished in the past is boosting Instagram posts, saying “social media posts don’t pay the bills”.
“They’re talking about helping all the struggling businesses downtown who have lost revenue because of Covid. But if you look at the place lately, it’s a zoo. Our numbers have been better than they were in 2019,” she added, referring to her flagship store downtown.
Feminism is really no longer coherent.
The same feminists who oppose a statue of an iconic American figure, based on an iconic American photo, defend hardcore pornography.
Apparently, there is supposed to be some kind of disagreement between feminists who support women using sex to manipulate men and women who support denying sex to men to manipulate them. But there isn’t really any active disagreement. They all just go along with whatever position causes the most drama.
I’m old enough to remember when “body positive” feminists pointed to Marilyn and compared her to “too thin” models like Kate Moss, saying that women should be a bit plumper.
Maybe, you could discuss whether Kate Moss or Marilyn Monroe had the more ideal figure, and who was more healthful.
As a fitness expert, I would classify them both as healthy. As a man, I don’t think either would be rejected based on their weight.
Of course, now the top model is Tess Holiday, and we’re supposed to believe she’s “healthy at any size,” despite the fact that there is virtually zero chance she will make it to 50.
In fact, even if she lost all of that weight now, the damage to her organs would be irreparable.
But they’re telling you this is healthy, and that Marilyn is some sort of body-shamer.
Again: none of these women protest against actual pornography. They have maybe sort of begun to do that, with the various attacks on PornHub. But it is impossible that they want to deal with the consequences of actually banning pornography.
If they banned pornography, men’s testosterone would shoot up, and the jig would be up for these sluts. Instead of black men grabbing them and throwing them in the back of Dodge Durangos and gang-raping them, it would be white men doing that – and they would do it a whole lot more intelligently, and get away with it.
Without porn, the general deference to women by white men would end, totally.
So instead, they’re just going to ensure that no image of a healthy woman’s body is allowed to exist in the public space.