Women’s Affairs Spokesperson
14 February 2012
The beauty myth needs busting again
New Zealand women should be encouraged to feel comfortable in their own skin, rather than made to feel they must conform to some photo-shopped, Hollywood stereotype, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson, Sue Moroney.
“A new Next magazine survey shows an alarming degree of anxiety among New Zealand women about body image.
“Eighty-six per cent of the 1500 women who took part said they think about their weight daily, while three quarters believe good-looking people get more opportunities in life than ‘ordinary’ ones,” Sue Moroney said.
“Unfortunately it’s hardly surprising given the messages we are bombarded with every day. How often, for instance, do we see a middle-aged or older female television presenter on our screens? When was the last time we saw a size 14 – the standard New Zealand dress size - model, an advertisement for make-up that shows laugh lines?
“Let’s encourage magazines like Next to regularly feature and celebrate every-day New Zealand women – we’re hard-working, down-to-earth, adventurous, inspiring, smart, loving and we are mostly size 14 and above. I have seen them feature such women before and they are great role models.
Now Ms Moroney might indeed be focusing on women, but we agree with her comments, given that we are somewhat ample of proportions (albeit 10kg less ample than we were at the start of the year), and no oil painting.
But we couldn't help but reflect on the irony of her closing paragraphs; read on:
“Women should be confident in their abilities and of their bodies.“Why aim to be an air-brushed illusion used as a marketing ploy, when we could celebrate our very real achievements in education, business, the arts and literature – all achieved while often raising the next awesome generation as well,”
Do we take that to mean that Sue Moroney is announcing that the Helen Clark era is over? Or did Ms Moroney forget the 2008 election campaign?
Whoops. We guess that's what's called an unintended consequence.