Now for something completely different…
What’s the dichotomy between progressive activists in France and their counterparts in the United States?
The French are far more aggressive. They throw firebombs, they rig factories with explosives. In short they kick ass. While we quietly take it up the proverbial rump roast.
What’s the difference between Ukrainian progressive activists and their U.S. counterparts? Uhhhh…
I’m sorry, what we were we talking about again?
The Ukrainian Femen movement has begun harnessing the power of boobies to advance a three-part agenda. The Paris-based organization says it’s battling the patriarchy to halt the sexual exploitation of women, end dictatorship, and challenge religious excess.
How do you stop the exploitation of women by objectifying women?
Your guess is as good as mine, but this is clearly an arm of the Progressive movement The Cynical Times needs to cover more closely.
Femen began in Ukraine in 2008, according to The Daily Beast, when a small group of students formed a women’s rights group to protest sex tourism and prostitution. They didn’t get much attention until they started demonstrating topless and scrawling political slogans on their bare breasts.
How you battle the sexual exploitation of women in your country by objectifying female bodies and communicating in a foreign language is an open question. That said, this is one group which is challenging the status quo which has no problem attracting global media attention.
On the other hand, if Femen wants to be taken seriously they may have to rethink this attention-getting strategy at some point.
Although there’s clearly no pressing need for change in the short-term.
“Not everyone’s going to agree with the methods but they are effective in terms of getting people talking about issues that would otherwise be ignored,” Australian filmmaker Kitty Green told Vice News.
Green produced a documentary about Femen in 2013 called “Ukraine is Not a Brothel,” and is critical of the pivotal role played in the organization by one man. She indicated that Victor Svyatski founded the group and still serves as its central tactician, often usurping the authority of the women around him.
That said, there is no perfection in the real world.
Without the Canadian group Adbusters there would have never been an Occupy Wall Street.
Someone always has to get things started. Whether they’re content to yield power to others afterward is often the difference between a movement devoted to fighting for freedom and one that’s just fighting to swap out the beneficiaries of the status quo.
Femen strikes American political activist Annica Ledin as a work in progress.
“If they got rid of the founder by now, and they are making their own decisions about their bodies and their lives, and starting to accept women who do not fit the beauty standard of the founder, I don’t really have a problem with them,” said Leden, who uses a pseudonym. “I still think their methods are mostly counter productive.”
In other news, we’re starting our first Kickstarter campaign here at the Cynical Times.
Yeah, we know. We’ve never really asked you for money before.
Why change now?
We’re doing it because we hate readers.
That’s how you can tell we’re legitimate journalists.
But seriously, we desperately need to get to Ukraine to cover the budding Femen movement. In order to get to the bottom of all this “she said, she said.”
Because the real challenge to covering Femen is finding a way to generate enough text to justify all the pics of old fat cops chasing after semi-naked women who are young enough to be their daughters.
And because activism in America is not nearly as much fun as it is in Ukraine right now.
Case in point, our own recent period of voluntary liberal servitude in the freezing Progressive wilderness of Standing Rock.
Newsflash: North Dakota is really fucking cold in December.