Beer, Sexism, and even a mention of donkey punches

Between raging bitches and possibly sexist/racist artwork, beer is becoming quite the controversy! Of course I am talking about Flying Dog and Clown Shoes, respectively.

I do not know how to react to this and so I am putting this out there to solicit respectful comments and thoughts.

My one brain says it’s no big deal and that we women have bigger fish to fry.
But my other brain says what if girls see that and think that we are only valued for our bodies and looks.
And yet my third brain says, but aren’t we? I mean, if I had a hook nose, a hump on my back and 4 eyes, would I have the life that I do?

My one brain says that craft brewers are only doing what the macros do (remember the “twins” commercial? It couldn’t have been more obvious if it had been called, “Juggs”)
But my other brain says but maybe the macros shouldn’t rely on sex to sell their beer. Maybe they could start respecting women.
And yet my third brain points out that our society permits sex to sell things and while I am magical, I can’t fix that.

My one brain asks what does it hurt if someone uses boobs or the word bitch to sell beer?
And then my other brain reminds me of all of the times I’ve been called a bitch (or worse) for daring to express an opinion stronger than “boy it’s hot out here today, isn’t it?” and I wonder if casual use of the word doesn’t lend to that sort of name calling.
And yet my third brain pipes up and reminds me that I call other people bitches all the time and certainly have worn a low cut shirt a time or 11.

My one brain tells me to chill out and have a sense of humor—it’s just beer. No one is going to decide to rape someone because they see the word bitch on a bottle of beer. And besides, a female dog is a bitch, right?
And then my other brain wonders if it is a slippery slope and does violence against women start with objectification of women in society?
And yet my third brain knowingly says that the slippery slope argument is not a good one to make because it can be dangerous. See: http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/slippery-slope.html

My one brain says that women are equal in so many ways now and we should just chill and drink the damned beer.
And then my other brain says right on—we don’t need that sort of protection and besides, if we really want to “protect” women, let’s maybe start with other issues that we face, such as risk of violence/rape, less pay for equal work, sexual harassment, and access to reproductive freedom.
My third brain isn’t quite sure what to say to this, as it agrees with us both. It is now flummoxed and must find a quiet place to relax.

My one brain wonders how this issue would be treated if it were naked men on the beer bottles. Or if the stereotypes were offensive to a specific ethnic group (like if they put me on the bottle, made my nose bigger and had me picking a quarter up off the ground with a big, lecherous grin on my face)?
My other brain has a feeling that the issue would be treated somewhat differently, and probably no one would be accused of “not having a sense of humor” when he/she dared to question the marketing practices.
My third brain is still off recovering from the last question and has no comment.

So I still don’t know. Are hypersexualized images of women damaging? Do they cause long term negative effects on men and women? Or does advertising just reflect a society where there are strip clubs every few feet near my school, where “pole dancer” has someone become a legitimate “career choice” (in some circles) for girls and where there is a market for the female degrading “donkey punch” porn (look it up). So where does disrespect for women start and where does it end? Does it really start with a beer bottle?!

Should I even be worrying about this or should I, in the words of a wise man, just relax, stop worrying and have a homebrew?

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Beer, Sexism, and even a mention of donkey punches

  1. Megan says:

    I can’t wait until gays in the advertising business starting winning the war with, “you need to market to us” and that’s when we’ll start seeing some half naked hot men on beer. Or funny looking ones. 🙂 While boobs can be pretty, I’m ready for some manly pecs and a tight butt instead.

  2. sun runner says:

    “But my other brain says but maybe the macros shouldn’t rely on sex to sell their beer.”

    They have to use hot chicks and sexual innuendo to sell their beer, because it tastes like ass. And I think they know it. Big boobs, “vortex bottles,” cans that change color, “wide mouth” cans, and every other stupid gimmick the Behemoth Beer Breweries have rolled out over the years to dress up the pig (is that the saying?)…

    …it’s still a pig, and in this case, the pig is beer that sucks.

    I, too, would like to see some equal-opportunity hotness on beer labels and in beer advertising. Where’s the hot guy with a six-pack (and I don’t mean beer, although think of the ad copy possibilities there).

    As for the questions at the end: Yes, Maybe, Yes, I don’t know, and Probably not.

    And yes. Have a homebrew. 🙂

  3. Margot says:

    This captures my feelings about the objectification of women in advertising so well. On the one hand, it makes me mad and I worry that it might help create the kind of environment in which rape and unequal pay can exist. On the other hand, I feel like it’s not worth getting angry about when the relationship between objectifying advertising and rape and unequal pay is unclear and the latter would probably persist even if I could wave a magic wand and make the former disappear. And on my magical third hand, I like looking at boobs, too, and I don’t know where to draw the line between appreciating women’s bodies and objectifying them…mostly I wish a more diverse range of bodies were portrayed as sexy and beautiful.

    As for the beers in question–I don’t find Raging Bitch any more offensive than Arrogant Bastard. I hope the beer is as awesome as some of the Raging Bitches I know and love. But the Clown Shoes ones I just don’t know what to think about. I’m not totally sure why people think they might be racist.

  4. Brenda says:

    I really appreciate this post, and the questions you raise. It’s a bit uncanny, as I’m currently writing my next Beer Guide article on this topic, and there is *so much* overlap between this and what I have so far. We must be tapping in to the same female-craft-beer-lover-collective-unconscious! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s