Keep your clothes on, Dannii

The Daily Telegraph

By Melinda Tankard Reist

September 20, 2008 12:00am

So Dannii Minogue wants to bare her body to the world again in the name of freedom and self-realisation. The singer and talent show presenter is considering posing nude again for Playboy.

She first took her clothes off for the porn magazine 13 years ago, aged 23, and by doing so she shocked herself, apparently.

“But it was liberating at the time. I would do it again. If the money was right, then sure,” she said this week.

Minogue, who got her start on Young Talent Time, went to Playboy after her short-lived marriage to actor Julian McMahon.

“I had just had a marriage break-up. Most women go to the hairdressers – I did Playboy,” Minogue said.

Well she might think “freedom” but I’d call it “titillating men”.

What are young women to take from this?

Relationship with the man you loved and wanted to spend your life with has broken down? Hell then, just put yourself out there as a sex aid for every other man in the world. That’ll do the trick: you’ll feel empowered and liberated!

Of course, you’ll also be liberating and empowering the bank accounts of the worldwide sex industry.

Perhaps Dannii doesn’t know much about Hugh Hefner’s knack for trivialising female sexuality worldwide. Or that tweens are his latest market. The Playboy bunny now adorns pencil cases and doona covers. A Playboy make-up line includes “Tie me to the bedpost blush” and “Hef’s favourite lip gloss”.

They should be re-labelled “disgusting old man in pjamas” lip gloss.

Girls are wearing the brand of the global sex industry. And they think “cute rabbit”. How disturbing. With Dannni’s porn-star poses and her false breasts, Minogue only entrenches this dehumanising industry.

Doctors are reporting more young girls are seeking breast enhancement. One in four 12-year-old girls wants cosmetic surgery.

A recent British survey found the majority of young girls aspired to be celebrities, lap dancers and strippers.

And perhaps the most disturbing of all, a 22-year-old American plans to auction off her virginity via the biggest US brothel. “We live in a capitalist society . . . why shouldn’t I be allowed to capitalise on my virginity?” women’s studies graduate Natalie Dylan said.

“I understand some people will condemn me . . . but I think this is empowering.”

There’s that word again.

Empowerment is now apparently pimping your virginity, wrapping your legs around a pole, flashing your breasts in public or giving sex jobs on demand.

And the pornification of society is affecting children. Try this for a worry: Six-year-old boys were running a “sex club” at a Queensland school. They bullied girls for sexual favours.

Studies have shown that after men are exposed to sexualised content, they treat women like sexual objects.

That’s what has become of the movement for women’s equality.

As a 15-year-old lamented in the book Sex Lives of Australian Teenagers: “We’ve come nowhere from the sexual revolution.”

Minogue could help girls like this by sticking to her charity work – clothes on.

Helping girls see that they can change the world, now that’s liberating.

* Melinda Tankard Reist is a director of Women’s Forum Australia



Author: Leslie Carol Botha

Author, publisher, radio talk show host and internationally recognized expert on women's hormone cycles. Social/political activist on Gardasil the HPV vaccine for adolescent girls. Co-author of "Understanding Your Mood, Mind and Hormone Cycle." Honorary advisory board member for the Foundation for the Study of Cycles and member of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research.