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Old March 7 2012, 04:22 AM   #27
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Re: Vanguard: Harbinger by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Sci wrote: View Post
But if you're part of a military organization that literally forces you to wear revealing clothing (and on pain of court-martial)? That's not a choice, and that's objectification.
Again, is it any worse than Scots in a Highland regiment having to wear kilts? Lots of things in the military are mandatory, but that doesn't make them sexual repression. You're too caught up in your own assumption that skin equals sex equals subjugation.

And Vanguard: Harbinger made it very clear that numerous female Starfleet officers were not comfortable with the miniskirt uniforms.
And reality makes it clear that Whitney and Nichols preferred wearing them. People aren't uniform in their taste in uniforms.

I want to emphasize that I respect you, Christopher, but I think that argument is premised on the supposition that somehow these hypothetical people can divorce their egalitarian present from the historical patterns of patriarchal oppression that led to it. But you can't divorce yourself from history.
No, you can't divorce yourself from your own prejudices and preconceptions. You are so very quick to launch self-righteous attacks on other people's biases, yet so incapable of questioning your own.

Why the hell should women who've lived their entire lives without knowing sexual oppression or domination be forbidden to dress in certain ways because their ancestors were mistreated? Isn't that just perpetuating oppression?

There are plenty of people in the present day who are practicing nudists. There are plenty of people who live in tropical cultures where it's normal not to wear a lot of clothes. The assumption that showing skin is offensive or demeaning is the bias of a particular culture, hardly a universal truth. You're being very ethnocentric in your assumptions.

And you're still perpetuating a double standard. Why aren't you railing about the objectification forced on William Shatner when his shirt kept getting ripped off? Was he a victim of "patriarchal" oppression too? Your unexamined assumption is that only men are oppressors and only women are victims, and I find that insulting to both sexes.

No, because there's a big difference between the garments you just discussed, and the TNG "skant" or the TNG and TOS skirts. Those garments aren't designed to be practical or useful or project a professional image. Those garments are designed to show off skin, to advertise the wearer as a sexual object.
You're arguing in circles -- they're objectified because they're dressed in a way that's objectifying. That's not valid reasoning. And you're still hung up on this unhealthy assumption that being sexy is the same as being objectified. No. That's the case when it's done wrong. It's not the only way to do it.

And you're too caught up in the false assumption that the only possible reason for a woman to look good is to appeal to men. Plenty of women like to look good for themselves. Being sexy, looking good, is not just about objectification, about how you're perceived by others. A lot of it is about how you perceive yourself, about wanting to feel good about yourself and just feel good. Many women like to be desired, not because they want to please a man, but because they want to have the power to attract men who can give them pleasure, and because just knowing that they could do that, even if they don't act on it, is a source of pleasure for them. Women even like looking at other women who are presented sexually, because it lets them imagine themselves as desirable and makes them feel good. So women being sexy can be as much for their own and other women's benefit as for men's.

So you're being very dismissive of the female point of view by assuming that the only possible reason for a woman to dress attractively is to serve a male agenda. You're unable to consider that a woman can be sexy without being an object or a victim of men, and that is incredibly sexist.

You're supposed to be a liberal, right? So presumably you defend a woman's right to make her own choices about her body without having men go around telling her what to do. If that applies to whether she gets an abortion, surely it has to apply to something far more trivial like whether she wears a miniskirt. My attitude is that it's up to the woman. If a woman tells me that she feels empowered by wearing a miniskirt, or by wearing an all-concealing burqa, or by going completely naked in public, I'm not going to tell her that she's an idiot and needs to believe what I tell her is true, because then I'd be the oppressive patriarch. If she finds empowerment in it for her own reasons, then it doesn't matter what past generations of oppressors intended for it. She's taken control of it and made it her own, and since it's her body, I don't have the right to deny her that choice.

And we're getting way off topic.
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