The Oldest and most foul form of snobbery


The No More Page 3 campaign is gathering momentum, tens of thousands of people have signed the petition requesting that the Sun’s editor, Dominic Mohan, ceases his paper’s practice of publishing pictures of topless women. Naturally, there are those who take exception to the aim of the campaign, some because they (mistakenly) believe that the campaign aims to ban Page 3 and are worried about imposed censorship. Others, though, understand what is at stake but believe the premise – that showing women’s boobs in a national newspaper causes wider problems – to be fundamentally flawed. Brendan O’Neill has taken this view with a flourish and accused No More Page 3 supporters of being ‘driven by the oldest and most foul form of snobbery’. His contention appears to be that by campaigning against a publication that is largely read by manual workers a metropolitan elite demonstrates its disgust of this section of society.

Why? Where is the evidence? Could it not be that we believe in a much more wholesome human dignity that celebrates human potential without becoming sex objects? The reason this practice objectifies women is that there is clearly no relationship between viewer and viewed. Therefore, an object she has become (for someone else’s gratification presumably).

By placing the arguments out there, the campaign is generating debate about what we value in ourselves and what we value in others, in other words, what kind of society we desire to be. If we are happy for men to talk to women whilst gawping at their chests then we need do nothing. If we want to tolerate rude comments on the pavements of our cities, sit tight and hope nothing changes. If we want girls to aspire to cosmetic surgery to gain attention, keep quiet. If, though, we have a different view of society, we might like to stand up for it right now.

The No More Page 3 petition is available here.

And if Mr O’Neill wishes to call me inconsistent due to the prevalence of internet pornography, he might wish to read some of my previous posts.

The No More Page 3 petition is available here

And if Mr O’Neill wishes to call me inconsistent due to the prevalence of internet pornography he might wish to read some of my previous posts.

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