Zara Holland is twenty years old and held the title of Miss Great Britain up until a couple of days ago when she had sex on the reality show Love Island and had her title swiftly removed. As much as this angered me, I'm quite glad it's happened as it's given us all a crystal clear reflection of the shitty message society gives women.
Personally, I think it's really gross for anyone to have sex on tv. I also think these shows are full of attention seeking airheads and I'd rather Netflix and chill (in the literal sense) than watch a bunch of shallow drama queens create sexual tension on a beach. Rant over. However, I think we have a very serious issue in society regarding women and sex, and this story has thankfully drawn attention to it and started a conversation. The organisation's reaction is exactly what I'd expect from an outdated, traditional, sexist beauty pageant. But that doesn't offset the fucked up gender inequality it's propelling.
Zara Holland was awarded the title for being sexy and desirable. Yet she is now being scolded for having sex, the result of being sexy and desirable. Anyone else picking up on the hypocrisy here? Society tells women to be sexy ALL THE TIME. Literally from first thing in the morning when we pop on the radio or watch the morning news, we will inadvertently be told to be sexy. Perhaps an ad for the latest razor to achieve silky smooth legs, a new mascara for 'triple the length lashes' or a breakfast cereal promising to eradicate a few pounds from our tummies. *Note that we no longer want to lose weight from our asses as having a big bum is now the aim. But before you get pizza happy, that round, toned bum must perch below a minuscule waist and slim legs. Get it? Got it? Good.
We are told to be sexy, be attractive, be desirable for men. But sex is for them, not you. We're told to spend hours every day making ourselves more attractive so that dudes want to sleep with us, but if we do actually sleep with them then, oh, well we're sluts and must have no self respect. We are told to do everything we can to get men to desire us but are banned from showing that same desire ourselves. I think society is deeply uncomfortable and scared of female sexuality. What riles me is the fact that the Miss Great Britain Organisation have assumed ownership over this single woman's sexuality, as if it's their property. They have undertaken the right to decide when she can and cannot be sexy. It's 2016 man (woman?) this is crazy! Just let us own our sexuality and choose what to do with it sans judgement, like men have been doing since the beginning of time. The man involved in this televised tryst, Alex Bowen, got off scot free (obvs). Other contestants referred to Zara as a 'slut' and said they were 'disappointed she's stooped this low', all the while Alex was receiving congratulatory pats on the back. What a disturbing message to be broadcast across the country.
The average British woman spends £140,000 on hair and beauty products throughout her lifetime. That's a lot of money to spend on drawing male attention only to then be punished and frowned upon for enjoying the result of it. Meanwhile, men are sauntering around town unshaven, wearing fucking combat shorts and crocs, getting laid on the regular and receiving a high five every time.
So can we please establish that sex is not just for men. Let's put an end to shaming women for pursuing or enjoying it. Oh, and let's also try to put an end to the combat shorts and crocs combo. I mean, we wear thongs up our asses every day, so come on guys, it's the least you can do.Suggest a correction