Explaining the basics to protesters

On Christmas Eve, a member of pro-abortion group FEMEN strode into the Cologne Cathedral in Germany, jumped up onto the alter, and removed her shirt. (Story here.) Twenty-year-old Josephine Witt thought that removing her shirt and flashing her lithe, supple body at men was a really good form of anti-patriarchy protest.

It was an incredibly crass, callous way to protest: those who are there to worship Jesus on Christmas Eve aren’t there to be harassed. It was also an incredibly stupid protest.

Many of the men in the pews must have felt profound pity for her; other men must have mentally recorded the look of her mostly-naked body, pert breasts, and shining hair to replay in their X-rated late night (or early morning) activities. Let’s be honest here: men really, really like seeing young, attractive women without their clothes on.  There are entire industries devoted to this – strip clubs, pornography, the movie Titanic – multi-billion dollar industries of various legalities, aimed at satisfying this particular male desire.

Josephine Witt’s only two accomplishments were to get herself arrested and to save men the cover charge at the strip club.  She violated the sanctity of the Christmas Eve service and her own body, but removing her top is not something that men inherently dislike.  Their better angels often ask them to avert their eyes, pray for her as if she were their daughter or sister, and see her as a human being in need of mercy, but that does not change the fact that her form of protest is about as effective as giving out free chocolate.

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