Speaking of Women's Rights: Did you know…

Monday, July 19, 2010

Did you know…

by guest blogger Katherine McMahon

Did you know that just a few months ago ABC and Fox refused to show a commercial unless it was censored because they found it gross? Ashley Graham, a plus sized model, was featured in a Lane Bryant lingerie ad. Lane Bryant purchased a time slot during a Dancing With The Stars episode, but it did not air. As part of an assignment for school, I conducted an interview with Ashley, and when I asked her how she felt when she discovered her commercial had been banned she said, “I immediately heard it was because there was too much cleavage and skin. But then that would be a HUGE double standard, considering all the Victoria’s Secret commercials and skin we see all over the television! So therefore, I assumed they (FOX and ABC) were prejudice against a fuller figured woman. But at the end of the day it didn't hurt my feelings because I've been dealing with people who are like this all through school."

I asked Ashley a few more questions;“What goals do you have as a plus sized model?” and in return she offered, “To get people to stop calling us plus size. In the modeling industry we are all models. So why do I have to be labeled as a 'plus size' when I'm not even plus? The skinnier models aren't called skin and bone size.” I think she’s right. Why are people labeled skinny or over weight or plus sized? We are all the same on the inside, and that’s what matters most.

Take a look at the Lane Bryant video...

Now view the latest Victoria's Secret Nakeds commercial. See the similarities?

Now tell me, what does the Lane Bryant commercial show that the Victoria’s Secret commercial does not? That’s what I want you to think about. There is no difference – and the Victoria’s Secret commercial has enjoyed a successful TV run.

I wonder if any of you saw the Glee episode where Mercedes, a high school student, was asked to lose 10 pounds to make the cheer squad. One thing that really stood out for me was a scene from the end of the storyline when Mercedes asked her classmates. “how many of you at this school feel fat, how many of you feel like maybe you’re not worth very much or you’re ugly or you have too many pimples and not enough friends?” Why did people raise their hands? Maybe because they feel inadequate. Maybe because media portrays women who are in their 20s and 30s as 14-year-olds,, my age! Or maybe because the average ‘Super Model’ weighs 108-125 lbs, my size! When I see those models on the television or in magazines or catalogs I think they are very pretty but I wonder if they are healthy. The clothes make them look glamorous but underneath they must be skin over bones. I wonder if they feel inadequate too.

Ashley Graham lives and works in New York City and will be getting married in August 2010.

Katherine McMahon is an incoming eighth grader at Seattle Girls’ School. When she is not blogging, she is dancing.


1. Personal communication with Ashley Graham, May 5, 2010

2. Ashley Graham | Model for Lane Bryant nearly banned by TV

3. SoYouWanna be a model?