By now I'm sure everyone's seen the new Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. As you've undoubtedly noticed, the magazine decided to go in a different direction this year. A bigger direction*.
As I man, I have mixed feelings about this. My initial inclination was: You do not do this to the swimsuit issue. For god's sake, I pulled up the cover by googling "sports illustrated swimsuit fat girl". It was the first hit.
My next thought was to try and not be a sexist pig. This was quickly quashed by common sense. It's one thing to not view women as mere sex objects. However, it's terribly difficult to make a meaningful connection with a person wearing body paint. Face it, world: the real-world purpose of the swimsuit issue is plain to see.
For those who don't quite follow what I'm getting at, let's cut all the BS and just put it out there in the open why the swimsuit issue even exists. It's obvious to anyone with eight brain cells that this whole thing started off as a masturbatory aid. In the dark ages, men had limited choices when indulging in self-abuse. Religion frowned upon overtly sexualized imagery (except apparently Jesus's ripped abs/loincloth combo). Analog porn was difficult-to-find and risky (I have a theory that the entire ballet industry survived for years on the male desire to see women in tights; if they wanted to dance, fine. If not... whatever). Times were tough.
Then, in 1964 Sports Illustrated came up with an idea that changed everything. They said let's devote an issue to women in bathing suits.
What's that have to do with baseball, football, etc?
Who cares? It was way better than the JC Penney catalog. SI publishing the issue also gave it an air of legitimacy. Women accepted (or at least tolerated it) while men not-so-secretly hoarded back issues as the ladies' bathing suits shrunk with each progressive decade.
A great peace ensued for many years.
Let's get back on point: If SI would have tried this fat-woman-on-the-cover stunt in 1991, 12-year-old me would have led an angry pitchfork mob of men to SI's headquarters and burned that bitch to the ground. However, things are much different 25 years later. In the intervening years, free, high-quality computer porn has more than filled the void that the swimsuit issue used to inhabit. Denying us a statuesque blonde to enjoy for another year doesn't seem like such big deal when a depthless array of perversity exists only a private browsing window away. This is why I'm inclined to say, "let it slide," when it comes to SI's latest move.
Still, jJust to make sure SI wasn't simply responding to a dramatic upswing in fat fetishists, I checked out Pornhub's search analytic results (via their insight blog, which is actually pretty interesting) to see what terms people searched for to titillate themselves. Top search terms by state seem to indicate that, while we are all sick degenerates, none of us are really pushing the BBW thing hard enough to warrant the cover of a dying sex symbol magazine.
The really disturbing question centers around why SI is essentially rolling over to the fat acceptance movement. My guess is apathy. Deep down, us dudes get that the whole swimsuit thing is slowly dying; if SI wants to get a little positive femininst press on the way out the door, so be it. We owe them that much.
However, the fact remains that changes nothing: To those who would say that fat women are just as sexy as "traditionally beautiful" women, trust that I mean you no disrespect when I state unequivocally that they are not. As a person who's been both fat and fit (and registered the responses of the opposite sex while in both states) I feel somewhat qualified to say that. So-called fat acceptance (at least insofar as "big is beautiful" is concerned) is a total fantasy. Stratification is an inevitable manifestation of diversity. This is not misogyny, it's reality and, while the medicine may be bitter, it's far more judicious to use your energy improving yourself then wallowing in fallacy and attempting to subvert reality to your own set of circumstances.
*Yes, I did call the covergirl fat. Ashley Graham is reportedly 5'9" and 201 lbs. Her BMI is 29.7, making her a cheeseburger from clinically obese. Is she a hot fatty? Yes. Is that like being the tallest midget at the circus? Yes.
Noah's Inner Monologue
Scribblings of a man who can barely operate an idiotproof website.