February 8, 2017

STATEMENT: Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue Is Anti-Woman

Statement by Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of NCOSE


Washington DC – The latest Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue will officially hit the stores next week. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) denounces the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue for its objectification of women.

Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Issue is a sexist and repugnant magazine tradition,” said Dawn Hawkins, Executive Director of the National Center on Sexual Exploitation “A man buying magazines to leer at a woman’s exposed body is not in awe of her ‘empowerment,’ ‘agency,’ or ‘athleticism’ as a human being. He is consuming her as a sexual, inanimate object. This blatant dehumanization of women cannot be tolerated in a society that strives to value gender equality. It’s time for Sports Illustrated to leave the Dark Ages and to stop production of the Swimsuit Issue.”

“The sneak-peek of the 2017 Swimsuit Issue featured one woman’s mons pubic area, nearly exposed due to an untied bikini bottom. What does this image have to do with athleticism? Nothing. The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue exists to sexually objectify women, period.”

“Even worse, in this latest issue Sports Illustrated attempts to envelope raw pornographic themes in the veneer of ‘female empowerment.’ Christie Brinkley returned for another SI swimsuit photoshoot this year, but this time she brought her two daughters into the shoot as well. Why does our culture applaud parents for offering up their daughters as props for male sexual fantasies? Shouldn’t confidence stem from inherent worth and forged talents, rather than a perverse appeal to patently incestuous sexual interests with hypersexualized images of a mother and her two daughters?”

 “Since 1964 this magazine has sexually objectified women for sport and profit. In 2015, the cover featured a model revealing a portion of her pubic area,” Hawkins continued. “After more than 30,000 complaints were filed, Safeway quickly moved the magazine away from checkout stands and stated that two-thirds of the cover would be out of sight. NCOSE is asking the public to demand that companies like Wal-Mart, Kroger, Walgreens, Safeway, and Barnes & Noble stop profiting from blatant sexual objectification by removing the Swimsuit Issue from their stores. Patrons have a right to shop free from exposure to soft-core pornography in the checkout line.”

Take Action: Concerned citizens can contact Wal-Mart, Kroger, Walgreens, Safeway, and Barnes & Noble here.

National Center on Sexual Exploitation

Founded in 1962, National Center on Sexual Exploitation is the leading national organization opposing pornography by highlighting the links to sex trafficking, violence against women, child abuse, addiction and more. The organization changed its name from Morality In Media to the National Center on Sexual Exploitation early in 2015 to better describe the organization’s scope and mission, which is to expose the seamless connection between all forms of sexual exploitation.

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