I noticed the ad for Bayside Garden Supply on page 34 of your May 10 issue. A woman is standing on a log, grasping her back side. In the forefront, a man is blowing air up her skirt with an atomizer. The slogan reads "Clean up those dirty girls from top to bottom." It's a given that female marijuana plants need to be debugged. Sex may be an easy way to get people's attention, but this particular way of advertising narrows your market by the 50 percent of the population who are women.
It's not the product or the woman in the ad, but rather the message about women this is sending to the general public that bothers me. It shows that as much as we think we're in this hippie dippy community that has enlightened ways of thinking, where men and women are equal, in actuality we're not. The ad's message is that women are objects, or "dirty girls" that need to be cleaned up from top to bottom. This is not always the best way to reach the male demographic, either, because some men may find this narrow, old school view offensive.
Women who see this ad might not shop at a place that demeans women by depicting them as "dirty girls." This ad is gross. I certainly won't shop at Bayside Garden Supply, and I will tell all my friends the same. Please pull this ad.
Sharon Hammond, Eureka
I'm an avid North Coast Journal reader. I enjoy the quality of writing and the breadth of topics. The Journal is a fabulous publication, whether in print or online.
Having said that, I was reading "A Place in the Woods" (May 3) online recently, when my son walked up behind me and started staring ... not at the article, but at the advertisement next to it. Honestly, I don't even recall what the ad was for, but it was a huge scantily clad seductress.
Now, I'm not modest nor prude. I have nothing against pornography (for and of adults). But this reaction by my son got me thinking: First, the ad obviously does what it's intended to do, which is get people's attention. Second, and more important, it exposes my son to images that are totally age inappropriate. At this point, he's quite young, and sexual implications are lost on him. Frankly, he's so young that he might be more likely to think of breasts as a source of food rather than titillation. But soon enough, these images will start to be more meaningful, and not in a good way. I could write at length about how the media objectifies women or a slew of other related issues, but that's not the point.
My point is this: The Journal is a publication for all ages, and that sort of advertising isn't appropriate for children or adolescents.
One could argue that I should stick to kid friendly publications. However, I'd argue that our local "guide to what's happening" should be kid friendly. Specifically, NC Journal ads should be as family oriented as the rest of its content.
Finally, I understand that not all news is appropriate for children; but by the time my son has the capacity to read the Journal, he may be more prepared to comprehend the complex social issues reported therein. Until then, I'd like to be able to read the Journal without having to worry about what he's seeing over my shoulder. So, let's leave the sexually explicit advertisements to less reputable publications or websites, shall we? Thanks.
Carol Ingram, Arcata
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