Amber Rose is a feminist icon, trailblazer and champion of body positivity and women’s empowerment. She created the Amber Rose SlutWalk which is about to embark on its 3rd Annual strut on October 1st. The Amber Rose SlutWalk has a mission to put an end to slut shaming, sexual violence, victim blaming, derogatory labels, and gender inequality. And to ‘impact and uplift, while shifting the paradigm of rape culture’.
Recently, Amber Rose posted an image to social media promoting the 2017 Amber Rose SlutWalk. The image featured her slaying and embracing body positivity – pubic hair and all – and we love it! Unsurprisingly though, it offended many people’s delicate sensibilities. Instagram deleted the post as quickly as people slut shamed her.
Here’s the thing, whether you like it or not, Amber Rose’s image is transformative and is necessary for changing social discourse.
Here’s 11 reasons why:
1. It demystifies the shame and taboo around women’s sexuality. Plain and simple.
2. It desensitises us to the hyper-sexualisation of women’s bodies – which is very important in a world where women can’t breastfeed their babies in public because of this hyper-sexualisation of our bodies.
3. It tackles rape culture head on – by making a strong statement that women ‘ARE NOT ASKING FOR IT’ if they ‘reveal too much’ (And besides sexual assault and rape HAPPENS regardless of what someone is wearing/not wearing)
4. Based on the intense level of slut shaming she is receiving – it highlights a gross double standard, that it’s okay for women to be objectified in society but it’s not okay for a woman, through her own volition, to feel empowered by her body and sexuality.
5. It smashes the harmful stigma and social expectations that women – perpetuated by pornography – MUST be fully-shaven/trimmed downstairs often JUST to appease the male gaze.
6. Based on the intense level of people criticising her for having pubic hair (A COMPLETELY NATURAL THING) – it shows just how much our bodies are policed to fit ridiculous and outdated attitudes/expectations of what our bodies should look like. And by extension it shows the price women pay for non-conformity.
7. Based on the intensity and number of women slut shaming Amber Rose by saying she has no respect for herself shows quite clearly how much internalised misogyny is present in our society.
8. The fact that people want to vilify her by bringing her child into this by saying things like ‘your son is going to grow up being so ashamed of his mother’ is skewed, puritanical and archaic. This photo and her efforts with the Amber Rose SlutWalk show just how courageous she is. That she is willing to challenge the harmful status quo, that she is liberating so many women from the chains of shame, that she is leading with confidence and example by showing the world that women’s sexuality and women’s bodies are nothing short of beautiful. This is something that would make her child proud.
9. This isn’t going ‘too far’, it isn’t tasteless, crass or indecent. It is necessary to be bold and confront the issues noted ABOVE ^^^^ because at best it changes the way we view women, and at worst, it at least gets us talking.
10. I’ve also seen the silly argument being thrown around – ‘but if men did this, it would be a whole different story’. You’re right – it would. And that’s a whole different conversation that we can all have too. But quite frankly that’s not what we’re talking about in this particular instance. We are talking about the harmful treatment, expectations and attitudes toward women that stem from a deeply-ingrained place in our society.
11. And duh – IT’S UTTERLY BEAUTIFUL.