If you haven’t seen it, here is the video of those stupid guys who make Youtube videos on how to pick up chicks “motorboating” (i.e., smushing your face between a woman’s breasts and making a motorboat noise with your lips as you shake your head back and forth) more than 100 women in the name of breast cancer research fundraising:
In general, women are appalled by the video and men think it’s awesome. Personally, I find it profoundly irritating and patronizing that these guys expect to be applauded for using breast cancer as an excuse to run around grabbing boobies and filming many women who look uncomfortable while strangers rub their faces in their chests. Yet of course, the first thing people who don’t see anything wrong with this say in response to any outrage is, “but they raised $7,000, you humorless, fun-hating lesbian feminists! Isn’t that all that matters? If all involved were consenting adults, what’s the problem?”
The problem is that it’s insulting to women who actually have breast cancer — the women they are supposedly trying to help – to put a fun, frat-party spin on their devastating disease. And if a woman with breast cancer has already lost her breasts, this video supports the assumption that a woman without motorboatable breasts is now useless to society. Way to rub her face in it. (Or your faces in it?)
And I think it’s offensive that they put the women they approached in the position of having to say, essentially, “No, I don’t want someone’s face in my tits for 5 seconds to raise money for breast cancer research, sorry.” Well, thanks for helping womenkind, bitch! It’s like when those annoying clipboard people accost you outside Trader Joe’s asking, “Do you have a minute to help save the environment?” Of course they’re lying and plan to take up not just one but many, many minutes of your time if you stop and give them money, but if you refuse, it still puts you in the position of having to say, “No. I have nary a minute to spare to save the environment because I am a selfish, nature-hating troll.”
Some of the commenters on Jezebel’s item about this explained why the stunt is insulting better (and funnier) than I have:
..Please remember that the focus should be on saving the woman who’s, ahem, attached to the boobies. And sometimes, saving her means getting rid of the boobies. But that would make boners sad, so we don’t bring that up.
You know what? Fuck this. Fuck anyone who ties their donation to an arbitrary requirement like ‘let me motorboat you’ or linked to ‘number of shares’. [It’s] the same as donating 1 percent of sales of your shitty pink product. Charity isn’t fucking charity if you’re tying it in with your own self-interest, it’s just a nasty and cynical way of buying PR or sales. Donate the money or don’t, just don’t be cunts about it.
Because yeah, if these guys were really just interested in raising money for breast cancer research (Don’t get me started on “awareness”), why didn’t they just make one of their regular stupid pickup videos and say, hey, we’ll donate $20 per 100 viewers of this in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month? Then they could’ve raised money — gasp — without exploiting women. But they wanted publicity and they wanted to make softcore porn for free, using Breast Cancer Awareness Month as an excuse. To deny the self-serving aspect of this stunt is disingenuous, condescending assholery.
In an editorial last year for the Harvard Crimson, Reed E. McConnell wrote in response to the insistence that anyone offended by cutesy “save the boobies!” rhetoric regarding breast cancer research and awareness (ugh) fundraising should “lighten up”:
This upbeat banter takes the place of the real, serious conversations that people could be having about this disease, and that are the norm around other diseases that have similar mortality rates and health effects. No one would suggest having upbeat, silly banter about lung cancer, or about AIDS. But once breasts are involved, the conversation changes.
When the ol’ “Is this sexist?” question comes up, I find it’s always helpful/horrifying to reverse the gender in the given example. Like, what if some ladies made a video gushing, “We’re going to save some dick today!” and ran around a park or beach asking men if they could grab their cocks through their board shorts and wag them around like sock puppets for $20 a penis, all while an upbeat pop song played and the self-congratulatory dollar amount raised in the corner of the video grew. Can’t really picture it, can you? That’s because it would never happen, ever. In the eyes of too many people, men’s bodies are sacred temples; women’s, amusement park rides.