Esquire editor Alex Bilmes, 40, said his magazine prints pictures of “ornamental” women who should be admired in the same way that people look at “cool cars”.
Mr Bilmes made the controversial comments, designed to explain how men’s magazines operate, as part of a panel about feminism in the media at the Advertising Week Europe conference.
He said: “\’We produce a men\’s magazine and it has a male gaze… This is the controversial bit that people don\’t like but I always tell the truth about it – the women we feature are ornamental, that is how we see them.
“I could lie and say we are interested in their brains as well but on the whole we\’re not, they are there to be a beautiful object, they\’re objectified.”
His comments sparked a sexism row and led to widespread criticism on Twitter.
Well quite. Men do objectify women. Gay men objectify good looking men too.
No, not all men do this all the time. Just about everyone is entirely capable of differentiating between treating someone as a bit of eye candy and the relationship one has with another human being, thinking about their hopes and desires as well as just their looks.
But to complain about male objectification is simply to be complaining about the human race. Maybe it would all be better if this didn\’t happen: but it does, deal with it.
And I\’m afraid this is my biggest complaint with a large portion of political (and or politically social) thought. Maybe things would be better if people weren\’t greedy, ambitious, objectifying, whatever your cause du jour is. But whining about the way people are, about the internal; mental structures that evolution has provided us with, is a fool\’s errand.
Perfectly fine with the idea that we might want to try and make societal rules that curb the effects of some of these: quite happy that we combat greed with laws against theft, combat lust with both laws against rape and social mores about how we treat sexual partners. But there\’s a very large number of people out there who want to complain about the very existence of these human traits rather than accept them and then work out how to deal with them.
Men simply do look at beautiful women and, sometimes, objectify them. Shrug.