The Pussy Purse Ploy, and the Capitalization of Man Shaming

As I’ve written about in the past. I am a huge supporter for equality. These days though it appears like any simple slight is motivated by oppression of the opposite gender. The latest of these trends are the infamous Pussy Purses which feature nothing more than lips on the purse for a simple price of $165-$895. (I did a Google search to find out if these purses’ profits were being donated to any sort of charity and found out, they aren’t).

Image taken from Huffington post website.
Image taken from Huffington post website. I honestly thought that the purse was a mouth sideways too! Also will somebody have to explain this to children? If a man was walking around with a penis bag (is this a thing that will happen?) wouldn’t children exposed be victims of child abuse?

The designed stated that her motivations for designing this purse were equality and said:

“We [women] have been instructed to not be as carefree as men”,

“We don’t have that luxury, and I don’t understand why.

“Are women’s body parts more offensive? Even more so than a penis? This doesn’t make sense to me.”

She added that the thought process behind the DAMNsel purses was that they would allow women to: “still sit with their legs crossed, and still remain conservative and ‘classy’ if they chose, yet if a DAMNsel purse is held on their lap, it reminds the world that we are still advocating for social change, and women should have the opportunity to be as open as men.”

But, this doesn’t make any sense to me. Nobody is obligating women to sit in the way they do. It has always perplexed me at how concerned women are as to the opinion of others who have no particular say or do in their lives. Yet, men are publicly shamed in websites for sitting in a way that is physiologically more comfortable for their gender.

As one Reddit user who has been since been deleted wrote in the site:

“There’ve (sic) been a few posts lately concerning men sitting with their legs apart, and I got to wondering if there was more to it than simply having something between them (though, I feel that alone is valid); here’s what I’ve put together:

  • Testicles are uncomfortable to squish, but it’s also unhealthy for them to be kept at body temperature, thus the issue is discomfort and health.
  • Ischium bones in men, the bones you sit on, are closer together, meaning men have a smaller point of contact.
  • The inferior pubic rami, used to balance when you sit, is 20-30 degrees narrower in men, resulting in less stability; additionally, it makes sitting with one’s legs opposed unnatural.
  • Men have cylindrical thighs, as opposed to conical thighs, further compounding the issue of sitting with one’s thighs opposed.
  • Men have narrower acetabulum, meaning their thighs are closer together, resulting in less space between them, further compounding the above, the issue of external genitalia, and reducing the amount of balancing leverage available when sitting with one’s thighs opposed.
  • Men have more lateral facing acetabulum, meaning their legs swing forward, backward, and out; women have more anterior facing acetabulum, meaning their legs not only have a greater ability to swing inward, but do so naturally when moving forward, like when sitting or walking (thus the swaying hips).
  • Men have wider, heavier upper bodies, thus require more stability.

So, it appears to me that, for men, sitting with one’s legs apart is not only biologically natural, it’s biologically necessary to attain the same level of stability that women enjoy; plus, the inverse of these things makes sitting with one’s thighs opposed biologically natural for women… but I wouldn’t tell them that, science is misogyny¡


EDIT: Crossing your legs is bad for your spine, it might be comfortable, but so is slouching for many people, and you’ll both be paying for it later in life.”

But, this reasoning is apparently not good enough for writers over at independent.co, who proceeded to mock the reasoning with flimsy arguments such as:

Reason: “Women put their handbags on seats all the time”

Answer “…but if you asked them to move it, they probably wouldn’t reply with “I need it to be there because of my vagina”. In my experience, they’re also unlikely to invade your personal space with a bag if you’re already sitting next to them.

People do annoying stuff on public transport all the time, but men with spread legs can be found in pretty much any train carriage. But unlike the perpetrators of most transport faux pas, it’s awkward to ask them to stop — you’re risking a lengthy debate on the state of a stranger’s genitalia, and how comfortable it may or may not be.”

Listen, equality means that you can ask your fellow-man to allow more space for you to sit next to him and he will take you into consideration. I’ve had this happen to me before, and I’ve never had a problem or given anyone any flak for it. The people who complain about having to be quiet or meek, and then proceed to act in this manner truly are a perplexing lot.

What’s worse is that as a fellow writer Cathy Young once wrote about this same reason in her article. Women do take space with other items such as purses or even they way they sit. In a survey conducted on subway train passenger etiquette violations, the top three issues that were on people’s mind were nail clippings, religion, noise pollution (physical contact, and seating priority were also an issue, but unrelated to males or females).  The writer proceeds to write about how this trend of feminist or as she calls them pseudo-feminist are too preoccupied with trivial male behaviors instead of actually important issues. Issues such as the ones I wrote about in my first article regarding feminism and equality (it actually got me banned from r/feminism :D, so I guess it razzled some jimmies seriously go take a look). As males we are constantly being shamed for simply being different, or acting with different behaviors than women. We are different yes, but nobody is mandating anyone to act a certain way, much less sit in a specific manner. Ladies if you want to sit with your legs wide open, please be our guest. We will not complain ( as long as there is seating for everyone who is there).

However, I do understand that society has taught women that this is the “correct” way to sit. I also understand that the fashion typically associated with females, such as dresses almost requires them to sit in a certain way. But, as I’ve written about in the past “with change comes sacrifice”. If you want to sit like men, then wear less revealing clothing, if you still want to use that type of fashion then feel free to do so. You must remember though, that just as you were judging others so shall you be judged. You are entitled to be offended, but so is everybody else.  We are living in a blaming society, where everyone is quick to point fingers at each other for the simplest things. Why is the issue of how people sit something that hit mainstream media? In a different time period this would have barely made a small corner of a newspaper, now it gains major coverage thanks to websites like Tumblr.

It's your fault people!
It’s your fault people!

The worst part about all of this is that people aren’t really paying attention to the secondary effects that these actions are taking. Apparently there has been a rise in larger people receding into overeating thanks to the shame they felt at being photographed and made fun of online. A little girl who developed anorexia and bulimia thanks to being shamed on a school bus ride. This type of shaming culture that we have created is extremely destructive to those that suffer from anxiety disorders, and we’re propagating terms such as “equality” without any concern for those who have these issues. If we are to treat everyone as equals, we must leave behind the chains of repression and move on to the real issues at hand.  Like for example: how the Damnsel purses do absolutely nothing, but fatten the wallets of a greedy designer bent on capitalizing on misguided feminism.

Pussy Purses as they are referred to by the media are nothing more than a way for rich people (to be exploited) in order to display how carefree they are with their money. Just like tech experts have explained how the Beats by Dre are simply made heavier in order to give the appearance of luxury, these purses are  nothing more than a marketing scheme in order to gain money by capitalizing on feminist whose idea of feminism happens to be bashing men repeatedly in the head with a hammer labelled with that name. They aren’t helping any causes, the profits aren’t being donated to any cause (this is almost as bad as the NFL selling pink jerseys to raise cancer awareness and then proceed to not donate a single dollar towards the research). Why would anyone spend up to 895 dollars on a small piece of leather(?) in order to have men stop sitting in a way that is comfortable to them? I’m afraid I simply can’t answer that.

Stop the WomanSpreading. It hurts and makes me sad.
Stop the WomanSpreading. It hurts and makes me sad.
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