Monday, September 30, 2013

Prudishness or lifesaving?

The ad above (possibly NSFW) is a breast cancer awareness ad from the Scottish Government. It’s been called “innovative”, but one thing it isn’t is vague. That’s why it’s banned in New Zealand.

Technically, the ad above isn’t banned, but a New Zealand-made version of the ad isn’t allowed to show any actual breasts. That ad is below, and it’s what New Zealand censors would allow on television: No real breasts, and certainly no nipples.

I think the censors are being entirely too precious. They could restrict its airing to adult time, the same as with alcohol advertising, so children who are delicate flowers won’t be confronted with human anatomy.

I saw this on TVNZ’s Seven Sharp, where it was actually asked, if nipples are allowed on TV, where does it stop? Testicles? This sort of thing makes me roll my eyes: Some people are FAR too precious about the human body and want to pretend that women don’t have boobs or men balls. This SHOULD be obvious, but there’s a huge difference between porn and health information, and assuming that all real-life depictions of the human body are automatically obscene hinders needed life-saving information. Plus, it’s just damn stupid.

In that Seven Sharp segment, a woman battling breast cancer says that she didn’t know that the dimple that appeared in her breast was a symptom of breast cancer, and she waited months to go to the doctor. Until tonight, I’d never heard that, either.

So, if we have the opportunity to educate people, to give them information to save their lives, is prudishness permissible? I don’t think so. Someday, maybe we’ll get over ourselves, and in the same way that people are no longer required to wear swimsuits that cover them from knee to neck, maybe we won’t automatically assume that seeing parts of real human bodies is automatically and always obscene.

Someday, maybe, but how many people will die from ignorance while we allow prudishness to rule our lives?

1 comment:

Logan said...

That's really surprising, actually, considering ads in the last which were upheld, and the general lack of censorship of sex etc in TV shows.

Secondly, breasts are not testicles - they serve many purposes, one of the main ones being feeding a baby.