Tag Archives: football

Women Talking NFL: Topless and Fighting Back

Laurie and Debbie say:

The National Football League is a notoriously irresponsible and unethical organization in more ways than we can count. A few days before the Superbowl, Jennifer Swann at TakePart featured this 30-second video, “Topless Women Talk NFL.”

Swann also spoke with Cecelia Najar, writer of the video. Natalie Metzger directed.

Najar said she got the idea for the campaign last October while watching professional football players strut across the field decked out in pink accessories in a nod to Breast Cancer Awareness Month. October is also designated as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, but when Pittsburgh Steelers cornerback William Gay donned purple cleats to show solidarity with the cause—he lost his mother to domestic violence—the league fined him for altering his uniform. 
“It made me feel like women are only important to men when we talk about our boobs,” said Najar. That same month, Dallas Cowboys defensive end Greg Hardy was welcomed back into the NFL after serving a four-game suspension for a domestic violence charge—a punishment many considered not nearly harsh enough, inciting widespread criticism of the league. 

We applaud the bravery and directness of the video’s message. We would have loved to see it run as an ad during the Big Game.

From a body image perspective, these women are using the most powerful tools at their disposal (their nearly naked bodies) to make you see domestic violence–which is blamed on those same bodies. The huge majority of victims are women (although certainly some are men). The fundamental reason for domestic violence is that society permits men to explode their rage on women’s bodies. So when women take their boobs into the political arena, they are taking the way in which they are dehumanized and endangered, and using that to claim their full humanity.

This act of productive disruption is brilliant .. The disgusting aspect of the story is how far they have to go to be heard.