Maybe people should learn to control themselves
This is gross. Gymnastics isn’t over-sexualized because of leotards. It’s over-sexualized because creepy grown adults sexualize and fetishize young girls. Guess what? They’d still do it if the athletes were allowed to wear shorts. They’d still do it if the athletes wore head to toe one piece footie pajamas. You know why? Because it’s not about the attire. At all. It’s about grown men being disgusting pigs toward young women, which happens every day in every aspect of life, not just in the gym where gymnasts happen to wear leotards.
I think girls in leotards are more liable to sexual comments than girls covered head-to-toe, because more is exposed. I also think this is totally gross and sad.
(More in response to the original poster) However, I think the way to stop sexualization of young female athletes is NOT to encourage girls to wear shorts or more clothing… This only worsens the problem. A girl should be comfortable wearing anything she wants and be free of sexual harassment. She should be able to wear a full-length dress and a leotard, and feel just as good about herself in both, and people should treat her the same.
By making girls cover up, we’re teaching them that they are inherently sexual objects and responsible for their creepy sexualization, when in fact it is the observer’s fault.
If society stopped placing standards on clothing, and creating arbitrary parts of desire, I think we’d have much fewer issues.
In San Francisco last year, a man stabbed a woman in the face and arm after she didn’t respond positively to his sexually harassing her on the street.
In Bradenton, Fla., a man shot a high school senior to death after she and her friends refused to perform oral sex at his request.
In Chicago, a scared 15-year-old was hit by a car and died after she tried escaping from harassers on a bus.
Again, in Chicago, a man grabbed a 19-year-old walking on a public thoroughfare, pulled her onto a gangway and assaulted her.
In Savannah, Georgia, a woman was walking alone at night and three men approached her. She ignored them, but they pushed her to the ground and sexually assaulted her.
In Manhattan, a 29-year-old pregnant woman was killed when men catcalling from a van drove onto the sidewalk and hit her and her friend.
Last week, a runner in California — a woman — was stopped and asked, by a strange man in a car, if she wanted a ride. When she declined he ran her over twice.
FUCK YOU if you think that street harassment is a “compliment” or “no big deal” or that it’s “irrational” of us to be afraid because “what’s actually gonna happen.” Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you some more.
Whoever says street harassment is a compliment has obviously never experienced it.