Taking it all off is one very effective way to win attention for your cause. Especially when that cause is loving your body and accepting all its flaws.
Men and women from positive body image organization About Face protested in their underwear outside a San Francisco Victoria’s Secret this past weekend, holding signs that read “I Pledge to Love My Body.” The group asked passersby to sign a “body pledge,” encouraging them to accept their bodies as they are. It also enlisted people to add to and sign a petition against clothing brands like Victoria’s Secret, which, they argue, promote the unrealistic media portrayal of the “perfect” body.
Members also took to Facebook and Twitter to post photos of the event, dubbed “Operation Real Bodies Real Love: About-Face Action of Body Acceptance and Self-Love.” It was organized mainly through Facebook. The goal was to have fun and show that being awesome and happy can come at any size. About Face, founded in 1995, says on its website that it wants to help women and girls overcome harmful media messages.
The body image issue isn’t just for women, as evidenced by the presence of the guys at the protest. Abercrombie models and their ilk give men some unrealistic body expectations too. We all, men and women, have different tastes when it comes to the body type we’re into. The assumption that all men drool over rail-thin Victoria’s Secret types is bizarre—and so is the stigma against men who go after women with larger figures (anyone else heard the phrase “chubby chaser” recently?).
Shaming people for what they look like and what they find attractive is wrong, and unrealistic beauty standards are bad for us all. Strip down and carry on, everyone.