Local Radio Station, Dave FM Needs to Understand “Offensive”

I couldn’t help but comment on a photo that Dave FM posted (Click on the link to go to the Facebook page where you’ll see the pictures I reference in this post). Dave FM is a local radio station in Ontario, Canada.

The photo in question is this picture on which Dave FM commented, “this is so offensive”. My first reaction is, yep sometimes the truth is offensive to some; when you teach your children that they are born into sin and if they don’t obey a god, they will forever burn in hell, that is offensive and I’m glad the photo points this out.

Picture labelled, "offensive" by Dave FM

Picture labelled, “offensive” by Dave FM

However, I also think the reaction to this photo is ironic. It seems Dave FM finds a photo like this offensive, but they find it’s okay to objectify women – note the following photos: a woman with her hand down her bikini bottom (don’t miss the poster’s remarks), another photo of a woman eating a rather large hot dog and finally the one that gets the big laughs – the one of the dark haired, overweight woman. Yeah, it’s not offensive at all that Dave FM sees women as bimbos and anyone who isn’t a buxom blonde as unworthy.

Dave FM needs to really learn about their fan base and recognize what is and is not truly offensive.

A photo Dave FM doesn't find offensive

A photo Dave FM doesn’t find offensive

 

 

More non offensive photos from Dave FM

More non offensive photos from Dave FM

The kind of woman Dave FM finds is worthy of mockery

The kind of woman Dave FM finds is worthy of mockery

14 thoughts on “Local Radio Station, Dave FM Needs to Understand “Offensive”

  1. Yuck. Now Dave FM has received more promotion than it deserves. 5662 cretins “like” the Dave FM Facebook page. I’m sure the intelligent and discerning Canadian Atheist readers are appalled by Dave and his page.

  2. …Dave FM sees women as bimbos and anyone who isn’t a buxom blonde as unworthy.

    I think you’re reading a lot into a few whimsical images. As for the science/religion card, does “science” really proclaim that girl to be smart, a great learner, and beautiful? In my opinion the card distorts the meaning of science and tars religion with an unreasonably broad brush. It’s hardly offensive, but I’d call it – like the majority of what Dave FM seems to post – a touch silly and vacuous.

    • I’m so glad you said this on International Women’s Day. 🙂 I imagine looking at those images as a young girl. The girls posed like the above got the attention from Dave FM. Others that looked unattractive got equally negative attention. In other words, the value these women have is solely based on appearances. As a young girl, I’d learn pretty quickly that if you want to get the attention of men, you have a limited time in your youth to look pretty and you’d better not gain a few pounds.

      Now, normally I’d just roll my eyes at these images and right off Dave FM as an anachronism but when the poster called that particular image with the little girl holding the sign, “offensive” it was just too ironic not to comment on.

      • As an addendum that illustrates where I’m coming from vis à vis female beauty and her value to society based on her beauty, here is a father who expresses what I said above in a way better way, in a letter to his daughter

      • To the extent that the attractive women on Dave FM are getting positive attention, though, it’s coming more from the commenters (a fair number of whom seem to be female) than from the original posts. The images seem to be posted primarily for lowbrow comedic value and only secondarily, if at all, as eye-candy. The woman with her hand in her bikini bottoms is funny because she might be pulling out a “foreign object”, the one with the hotdog is funny because we’re all (apparently) supposed to giggle at the suggestion of fellatio, and the woman with the fridge is funny because she’s in a state of denial about the cause of her obesity. I don’t consider this sort of thing clever enough to be terribly funny, let alone edifying, but I just don’t see any clear suggestion in the posts themselves that the attractive women are more valuable than the unattractive ones. They’re all being chortled at, as are most of the men, animals, church signs and tinfoil robots that are also part of the mix.

        I can see how the comments might kind of, sort of affect a young girl in the way you’re describing, but there’s enough straightforward joshing mixed in with the expressions of lust for Ms Hand-In-Bottoms (which are themselves pretty tongue-in-cheek) to add up to a big neon Do Not Take This Seriously sign for anyone with a bit of judgement and perspective. I don’t think young girls are necessarily, or even usually, devoid of those qualities. But if you agree that the commenters are the main “problem”, I’d be curious (quite genuinely) to hear what you think Dave FM should do about it.

        As for Dr Kelly Flanagan, my initial reaction was that his friend who thought a makeup aisle in bloody Target felt like “one of the most oppressive places in the world” badly needs an all-expenses-paid trip to a North Korean gulag. That little flash of annoyance aside, I do think he has a point, but it’s mostly part of a larger point about advertisers and the way they play on people’s hopes, desires and insecurities (about aging, for instance). We all need to cultivate cynicism about those ploys in order to be properly resistant to them. And equating what packaging in the makeup aisle says to women with what society says to women is just sloppy thinking. They’re not unrelated, of course, and I agree that women often don’t receive sufficient appreciation for their talents and accomplishments as opposed to their physiques, but Flanagan is moving far too glibly from the makeup aisle to “most people” and “the world”.

        • I’m sorry you don’t get it. I’m glad you’re not a female.

          • Maybe if Corwin was a black lesbian bound to a wheelchair clarity would pay him/her a visit.

          • That might be too much clarity. 😉

          • You don’t get it because you have a penis… is not an argument.

          • Didn’t say that. Don’t straw man. That is truly not an argument.

            I don’t want to go through this all again but
            1) the “most oppressive place in the world” in that article was hyperbole. I don’t think the person literally meant it really was the most oppressive place in the world. 2) Images matter. When you are bombarded with such imagery it influences how you value yourself. This is not up for debate. This is science. 3) No one has to explain the “funny” of these jokes. The funny is in sexualizing these women – ha ha funny looks like she’s giving a blow job. Ha ha funny looks like she’s masterbating. Ha ha funny she isn’t sexy. Now, if we instead replaced the women with a minority group – say Jews and instead of sexualizing them, we demeaned them in another way would that be okay – ha ha look at the Jew with money. Ha ha look at the Jew with the big schnauz. Somehow it’s okay to laugh at women and sexualize them?

          • 1. Agreed about the hyperbole, but hyperbole can be irritating (at least to me) when it’s too over the top and unleavened by any obvious flippancy.

            2. Sure, but that’s a pretty general “you”. Different people are always going to perceive and interpret images in different ways, and not everyone is equally susceptible to the power of suggestion. It’s also worth noting that anyone not wishing to be “bombarded” by the visual content of Dave FM has the perfectly good option of going elsewhere on the web.

            3. I think you’re wrong, actually, about the fat woman with the fridge. The caption makes it clear that the joke absolutely is about the fact that she attributes her obesity to genetics even though she drinks pop in copious amounts. It would work just as well with a fat man. The humour may be a bit mean-spirited, but it makes a valid point about the way some overweight people explain their condition (I have no such illusions about my own more-than-ample belly – there may or may not be a genetic component, but I definitely eat too much fast food and don’t exercise enough). The unsexiness of the woman in the picture, which in my view is debatable anyway, is secondary at best. Similarly, the hand in the bikini bottoms doesn’t look all that masturbatory to me, at least when coupled with the woman’s less-than-ecstatic expression. I agree that masturbation is a perfectly reasonable interpretation of that image, but I don’t think it’s the only possible one – perhaps she’s admiring herself in a fit of genitally-focussed narcissism, or perhaps she’s checking herself because she felt something odd going on down there. I do agree with you about the blow job, although I think it’s more a jokey allusion than a blatant case of “looks like” (if she gives blow jobs without actually putting anything in her mouth, she’s doing it wrong).

            More importantly, though, the idea that “sexualizing” people amounts to demeaning them strikes me as grossly puritanical. Almost all adults are in fact sexual, in one way or another, and I just don’t see the harm in drawing attention to that fact and having a little fun with it. Can’t we leave “sex is icky” to the religious?

            As for my black lesbian paraplegic self (and I know that was Peter’s idea, not yours, but I’ll address it here anyway), perhaps she’d roll through Target on a shopping trip, chuckle good-naturedly at the transparent commercial nonsense in the makeup aisle, join in the banter on Dave FM for a bit, and then doze off to pleasant daydreams of sharing a hotdog with a buxom blonde. There’s undoubtedly a statistical correlation between one’s attitudes and one’s membership in particular demographic groups, but in my experience the latter is far from an infallible predictor of the former.

          • The reason I see those images as I do is the context – one type of woman appears over and over on the page juxtaposed with another extreme physique. Further the poster found the picture with the, albeit inaccurate, atheistic statements offensive. I found this rich within this larger context.

            As for how people interpret images, it’s not so much looking at them and thinking about them. It has a much wider influence that I’m sure you’re not ignorant of – thin models pushing an impossible ideal of beauty to women leading to all kinds of disorders, including anorexia. I’m not really here to argue all this but to point out merely – these images are offensive to some as well and not labelling any of those as offensive while labelling the atheist one so – that’s just ironic.

            Lastly, I’m not being puritanical about these women demeaned using sex. They are images that we laugh at – isn’t that demeaning?

            Clearly we aren’t going to agree but do the thought exercise I mentioned are replace those women with a minority then see how you feel about it.

  3. Science tells us none of those things.
    This is nonsense.

  4. @Diana

    The reason I see those images as I do is the context – one type of woman appears over and over on the page juxtaposed with another extreme physique.

    I’m not so sure about “over and over” – there’s a lot of variety in the imagery on that page.

    I’m not really here to argue all this but to point out merely – these images are offensive to some as well and not labelling any of those as offensive while labelling the atheist one so – that’s just ironic.

    The picture of the giant bacon sandwich on that page is probably “offensive to some” on the more intolerant fringes of Islam, Judaism and vegetarianism. If Dave FM had highlighted the supposed offensiveness of the pictures of women, but not tarred the bacon sandwich with the same brush, would that have been ironic? My point here is that buying into the irony you’re talking about is a lot easier if one agrees that the pictures of women are offensive.

    Lastly, I’m not being puritanical about these women demeaned using sex. They are images that we laugh at – isn’t that demeaning?

    Laughing at the images is different from laughing at the women, their bodies, or their sexuality. I think only the woman with the fridge is being portrayed in a demeaning way, and the image is demeaning (at least primarily) not because she’s fat but because she’s represented as being in denial.

    Clearly we aren’t going to agree but do the thought exercise I mentioned are replace those women with a minority then see how you feel about it.

    I’m not sure how the “thought exercise” is supposed to work. Above you mentioned stereotypes about Jews having big noses and lots of money. What equivalent stereotype about women are the images on Dave FM tapping into? That women are sexually attractive? From the perspective of heterosexual men, and lesbians, of course they are!

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