Sports Illustrated’s newly released Swimsuit Edition has no place riding the wave of the #MeToo movement, the National Center on Sexual Exploitation said Tuesday.
The group is calling on people to boycott the annual issue and demand that Target and Walgreens remove it from their aisles. According to the group, the issue contributes to a culture of sexual objectification and male entitlement that fuels sexual harassment and assault.
“The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition tells women and girls of all ages that no matter how many years, or how much blood, sweat, and tears you put into reaching the pinnacle of athleticism, your value as a human being still ultimately hinges on your sex appeal,” Dawn Hawkins, the center’s executive director, said in a statement.
“SI Swimsuit tells men of all ages, backgrounds, and demographics that you are entitled to gawk at women and girls as sex objects for your viewing pleasure,” she said.
“This message is so pervasive and so insidious that countless talented, strong, courageous women are convinced that they have to bare their bodies for untold numbers of unknown men to ogle and rate in order to feel empowered.”