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It's probably a near-universal experience to feel the discomfort and embarrassment of wearing clothes that make us feel out of place.  It is, however, a special humiliation that I wager most women and few men have experienced, to wear clothes that make you feel like a whore.  

If you've never had your worth as a person dismissed because you're "dressed slutty," if you've never been given a talking-to at work because you wore something and "people might take it the wrong way," if you've never been told you're asking to be raped if you "go out in that," then you probably don't understand how PERSONALLY women take it when MEN, even ones halfway around the world in a culture we know squat about, tell our sisters what is and is not acceptable to wear.  

And if ANYONE reading this is all hot to start banning symbols of oppression, would you please start with the bra?  I'd love to be free of them -- they're uncomfortable as hell and burning them clearly didn't work.

Possibly related news: Friday Open Thread (13 November 2010)
Bras banned in Somalia | LeMatin.ch
In Somalia, under penalty of lashes, Muslim women must keep their breasts bare under the veil, the Al-Shabab ("Youth" in Arabic) movement has decided. The Islamist group, which has nothing to envy from the Taliban in Afghanistan, is controlling several regions in southern and central Somalia, and large parts of Mogadishu.

Convinced that wearing a bra goes against the teachings of Islam, Al-Shabab militants have whipped in public several women who bore the underwear during the last days, . According to them, "the bra misleads about the natural state of the breasts, accentuates the woman's forms and arouses sexual desires". The militiamen hence multiply the check points, asking women to jump and shake the torso to verify if their breasts move naturally ...

En un viejo país ineficiente, algo así como España entre dos guerras civiles, poseer una casa y poca hacienda y memoria ninguna. -- Gil de Biedma
by Carrie (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jan 31st, 2010 at 05:16:08 AM EST

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