I thought we’d come a long way. I thought it was no longer acceptable, at least publicly, to demean women as mere sex objects. I was wrong. Apparently it’s okay to objectify women in 2013 if you’re an advocacy group exploiting sex to sell Obamacare to young people.
Advertisements by the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative and ProgressNow Colorado Education previously gained notoriety by producing pro-Obamacare ads with college students doing keg stands. Their newest ad features an enthusiastic young woman “Ali” holding a box of birth control pills standing next to a cardboard cut-out of actor Ryan Gosling. “Hey Girl,” it reads, “you’re excited about easy access to birth control and I’m excited about getting to know you. She got insurance. Thanks Obamacare.”
Another ad features a young woman and man with the line, “OMG, he’s hot! Let’s hope he’s as easy to get as this birth control. My health insurance covers the pill, which means all I have to worry about is getting him between the covers. I got insurance. Thanks Obamacare.”
Executive director of ProgressNow Colorado Amy Runyon-Harms told the Denver Post that the ads’ purpose was “to raise awareness, and that’s what we're doing. It’s great that more and more people are talking about it.”
Great for whom exactly? The young women portrayed as frivolous sex objects? The young women stuck on their parents’ insurance policy because they can’t find fulltime work? The young women among the 250,000 Coloradans who recently lost their health insurance because of Obamacare? How about the young women with insurance whose rates are likely to double next year under Obamacare? No thanks Obamacare.
This isn’t the first time President Obama and his allies have objectified women for their own purposes. Who can forget the Obama Campaign ad that that likened voting to losing one’s virginity? “My first time voting was amazing…Before I was a girl and now I was woman…I voted for Barak Obama.” Looking back, 2012 seems like one giant campaign below the belt to get my vote. Meanwhile advertisements targeted to men treated them as thinking individuals concerned about domestic and foreign affairs issues.
Here I thought women had finally achieved equality. Not so much.