On judging a book by its cover

Judging people on what they wear. It’s not ok. He in the torn jeans and worn-out shoes could be so busy raising a pair of kids and looking after a seriously ill partner. Her in the oversized clothes that just don’t suit could be relying on whatever clothes she can scrounge because new clothes would take food from her kids’ mouths.
So far so good? Now, what about her in the micro-mini and midriff top? Judging her on her looks is just as shallow as the first two, but it goes further. By whispering “she’s indecent” you buy in to the objectification of her body. You buy in to a culture that values what you wear, not who you are. The same culture that deems breastfeeding as offensive.
Human bodies are not inherently indecent. But by muttering about indecency, we make parts of the body ‘dirty’. We encourage the feelings of insecurity that many women (and men, but we hear from them less often) have about the skin we’re in. It’s not ok.
And don’t cry ‘think of the children!’. No child is born with body issues. We cultivate them when we insist that bodies are yucky and need covering up. Only then do they see flesh as indecent. If you can’t handle your child about the bodies s/he sees, it’s your parenting that has a problem, not another person’s attire.


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