Editor’s Note: The following letter is in direct response to writer J.P. Currie’s thoughts on the sexualization of women in surfing, and the world. You can read the original piece here.
Can you feel that? That lightness in the air? I believe it’s the collective sigh of relief resulting from the words of a male surfer, reminding us that surfing doesn’t do ugly and neither does the real world. We can move on now. I can only speak for myself when I say I’ve wasted a lot of time thinking about gender equality in surfing and the world. And while Mr. Currie doesn’t appear to have a background in gender politics, and it doesn’t appear that he has any historical, social context other than being a dude and a surfer, he is clearly an authority on the subject. In case any of us forgot, white men rule the world and have opinions about women. Of course that’s more important than social progress. Silly us.
Currie so eloquently reminds us that “The superficial tendency of favoring attractive people is not a problem unique to surfing, it’s a world problem.” A world problem! Of course! It’s a world problem, so why change it? That makes things so much less complicated. All this time I’ve been losing sleep over gender equality, racism, religious bigotry, war, climate change, and so forth, when I should have been adopting the more evolved philosophy of simply recognizing that “It’s not fair. But sometimes, sadly, that’s life.”
“You don’t need to be good-looking to be successful, but it sure helps. It’s just nature. Animals instinctively know that the best way to ensure the survival of their species is by choosing a mate that has the strongest genes, and the outward expression (phenotypic) of those genes is physical appearance.” See, everybody? Science. In order to propagate the human race we need sex. Sexy bikini models leads to boners, babies and then our survival. Or something like that. I don’t know. I’m a girl. Science is hard. At the end of the day if there is anything I’ve learned from living in a patriarchal society is that men must protect their inalienable right to boners at all costs. Even equality.
So thanks on the behalf of all of us worried, anxious feminists and equal rights activists, for bestowing us with your important words. The world can finally rest easy.
Girl Almost Pretty Enough to be a Real Surfer