So Men Want Advertising Equality?

Vanessa Torre

You asked when there would be a commercial shaming women…

It seems there is a very clear message that men of the world want to have heard and it is this:

“We don’t want a major corporation telling us how to think and how to act.”

I am paraphrasing about 8,237 comments that I have seen all over the internet and social media.

Men have stepped up to the podium. They are mad as hell and they are not going to take it. Do NOT tell them how to act. Do NOT tell them what to say. They DON’T need it.’s bad mood? Wife’s fault!


What I also hear is that some men think turnabout should be fair play. Remember the highly "offensive" Gillette commercial imploring that men be better. Why doesn’t Gillette make a version of the ad telling women what to do? Where is all the woman shaming? There should be woman shaming!


Guys, I hate to say it, but you’re late to the party. So late, in fact, that we’ve been breaking that party down and cleaning up the streamers for quite some time. It’s a big party and there is a lot to clean up! I mean, full on rager.

Showing up demanding for a “toxic femininity” version of the Gillette ad is ignoring the complete history of advertising.

It also demonstrates exactly how blind men are to how women have been brainwashed for decades.

Women have been told in commercials and in print ads how to behave, look, think and dress for decades. Some women never questioned it. Even if a woman did, she had no way to have her say about it.

Ads that have told us to behave in a manner that does not align with who we want to be have existed since television and magazines were invented.

Further, men have commented that it’s an attack on them. That it flies in the face of the good things that masculinity carry with it by focusing only on the bad.

Well, I’m sorry you feel that way. Get in line.

You’ll find the end of the line wrapped around the building by the JC Penney over near the entrance with the Maidenforms.

Post WWII advertising served a major purpose in regard to women. Women, who had taken on male roles and jobs while men were away at war needed to be reprogrammed into domestic life.

Betty Friedan, in The Feminine Mystique, went through scores of womens’ magazines studying ads spanning well over a decade. Gone were ads showing women in business. The were replaced by images designed to make women feel undesirable or inadequate for not being the perfect wife, mother and homemaker.

Women were striped of identity and forced into a corner to vacuum it with their new Hoover. Stay put and smile, sweetie.

It’s hard to take seriously the cries of men complaining about being told how to act by a major corporation when corporations, largely run by men with marketing teams run by men, have been doing the same thing to women.

The irony is not lost on me and it shouldn’t be lost on you either. Men, I understand you being offended if you think the Gillette ad shamed ALL masculinity. It didn’t. I don’t agree with that perspective but I see how you may think that.

We understand you’re mad as hell. Women have been mad as hell for decades. Now, you know how it feels. Can we stand together on that now?

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Flaming pinball, nerd, music lover, wine snob, horrible violin player. No, she won’t stop taking pictures of her drinks. IG: vanessaltorre Twitter: @vanessaltorre

Phoenix, AZ

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