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The North Wind

The North Wind

The North Wind

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Katarina Rothhorn
Katarina Rothhorn

The first message I ever sent from my Northern Michigan University sanctioned email was to the editor-in-chief of the North Wind asking if there was any way I could join the staff. Classes hadn't even...

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The North Wind is an independent student publication serving the Northern Michigan University community. It is partially funded by the Student Activity Fee. The North Wind digital paper is published daily during the fall and winter semesters except on university holidays and during exam weeks. The North Wind Board of Directors is composed of representatives of the student body, faculty, administration and area media.

GOALS NEEDED — NMU has scored just five goals all season and with four of their losses coming in one score matches.
M Soccer: Offensive struggles lead to three straight losses
Lily GouinSeptember 29, 2023

Column: Equality seems unattainable

I’m going to level with you here. If there was a guy all alone on a tropical beach somewhere, and he thought he may need to smell a little better, spraying himself with an entire bottle of Axe would not make me and my 10,000 friends stampede toward him in our swimsuits. Sorry if I’ve burst anyone’s bubble.

The fact is, men may say they want a woman who is smart rather than a woman who is uncommonly beautiful, but that is not what the rest of the world is telling him he should want. The world of advertisements tells him he wants a very skinny blonde woman who doesn’t speak, but spends most of her time staring at him longingly and tugging suggestively on his shirt, if he’s wearing one.

And for women, rejecting a man because he may not live up to our physical standards of male beauty is not an option. When we reject someone for being ugly, we look like snotty girls with our noses stuck up in the air. Have you ever seen a “No fat guys” T-shirt? And how about family sitcoms: Unattractive guy married to a hot wife.

Worse than sitcoms, however, are the commercials they are filler for. Most ads featuring women are either for cleaning products or makeup. Women in other ads usually only serve to attract a younger male audience. We are not supposed to have brains. We are supposed to have great bodies.

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The commercial I would love to see, and probably never will, is the one where three kids come storming into a man’s kitchen after he just got done mopping the floor. I want him to get all jazzed up about the new Swiffer mop that can hold all sorts of things, like dust, hair and even large crumbs. I want to see a man standing inside of a shower stall, complaining about mildew, or freaking out because he turned on his self-cleaning oven at 400 degrees for four hours, but the very next time he cooks, another huge mess is made.

In reality, my aspirations in life are not to clean a house all day every day. And while some people believe women have attained equal status to men, I heartily disagree. Take one look at the presidential candidates and their viability as such.

How can we say anyone is equal in this country when the fact that Hillary Clinton is a woman is a detriment to her electability? John McCain receives headlines for saying he wouldn’t have a problem with staying in Iraq for 100 years, but Hillary Clinton gets them when she wears a blouse that may be a little low cut. You would never see a headline that says “John McCain wears too-short shorts” or have to listen to news anchors talk about how much chest hair McCain was flashing that particular day.

People may say that we are in the third wave of feminism, but I think that’s really giving us credit where absolutely no credit is due.

The women of the ’50s, the ones who took to the streets to protest and fight for their right to vote, deserve some credit. Their great battle, and ours too, is perception, as it is with any group of people who are not white, Anglo-Saxon males. Women must struggle every day to prove themselves to be just as good as their male counterparts, and even then, they are hardly ever seen as equals.

Personally, I think the core of the problem is the language we use every day. There is no such thing as an unwed father, or a slutty man. And it’s not just sexually charged words either. Almost any professional sport has some sort of bias. Why is the NBA not the MNBA? Why do the women have to have the fact that they are women thrown into their title?

Americans need to change the way they speak and the way they advertise. Equality is not achieved overnight. It’s not something that is easily attained, but it is something that is certainly worth striving for.

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