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Letter from the Editor



Selling Sex
Jessica Bieterman

Sex, women, and the media, seems to be a selling topic for commercial America. Nowadays, you can't even buy a Pepsi without thinking about sex. If you watch some of the ad's put out on television, I think you'll know what I'm talking about. In the past, Pepsi has had Halle Berry and Britney Spears as spokes people for Pepsi. I remember one commercial with a scantily clad Spears dancing around and singing a song about Pepsi, the commercial resembled more of a music video, than an advertisement, with a splatter of pyrotechnics and big, flashing neon signs.

I feel like advertisers think our generation is stupid, as if were these caged guinea pigs who feed off of MTV, we only respond to bright colors and the over flamboyance of sexual innuendo. However, I am neither Beavis nor Butthead and I can't stand these advertisements. I am sick of watching women seduce hamburgers and celebrities making love to soda. I mean really, are you trying to sell me a meal or is this just a form of conglomerate prostitution?

Now, I have nothing wrong with women being sexually empowered, in fact, I wish more women were open and upfront about the subject. However, I can't stand it when women are objectified as brainless marketing ploys.

Over time, we've all heard of famous sex symbols; however, can you look back at those famous movie stars and tell me one extraordinary thing they did? Why is someone like Marilyn Monroe so greatly celebrated for being blonde, beautiful and stupid? Why do people still idolize her now? Although, I can't judge her personally, I just think it's odd as far as women figures go. We tend to exalt those who are beautiful or sexually appealing and just as quickly as we crown them, we discard them the minute they get old or unattractive.

It's a vicious process, aging; it's a food chain in America and especially for women. Being a woman, just being a citizen in the United States, I think we are bombarded with images of sex. Women perceive from the media that being sexy is showing off your body, getting a man's attention with your looks, not being funny or intelligent or creative. The media tells us we are never good enough. I think part of the fault of humanity is we are constantly searching for happiness, however, according to the media happiness does not exist. In fact, you will never be happy or at least should never be happy. You should always want to accumulate more, and if you don't strive for this, well then you are un-American. I've thought about this concept a lot, because it's easy to get into those trends and over-consumerism, but when it all comes down to it, I can accumulate as much stuff as I want, but when I get home at night my new DVD player still isn't going to love me.

Also, there is the fact that the media continues to tell us how to look. It keeps planting idealized images of women we should strive to look like. And who is the perfect woman, anyway? Is it Marilyn Monroe or June Clever?

I just wish there were more women in the public eye that were famous not because of how they looked, but because of what they had to say. I wish there was more women who sold CD's not because they cheated on Justin Timberlake, but because they had a true talent.

Sex will always be a big seller in America; perhaps there is no stopping it, being that it's not only enticing, but intriguing. I just hope with the knowledge we have as women we can use it to be more thought-provoking, rather than mindless money makers. I have faith, anyway.

Jessica Bieterman currently resides in the Venice area and is a full time student studying journalism. She enjoys writing, music, and films.





The Women’s College Magazine at Santa Monica College
Copyright 2003 Santa Monica College