"Self" Magazine Mocks a Cancer Survivor:
When a cancer survivor was contacted by Self magazine asking to use her photo, she never expected to be mocked.
Monika Allen was wearing a tutu when she ran last year’s LA Marathon — she was dressed as Wonder Woman — for her first marathon running with brain cancer. The race fell in the middle of chemotherapy and she says the outfit gave her motivation.
Allen makes these tutus for her company, Glam Runners, which donates money to charity. So when Self contacted her about the photo she was thrilled about the publicity opportunity.
But then she saw how they used the photo — in their “BS Meter” to make fun of women in tutus — she was shocked and appalled.
The article puts the photo on the lame side of the “BS meter” and says “people think these froufrou skirts make you run faster. Now, if you told us they made people run away from you faster, maybe we would believe it.”
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Honestly, the editor’s response to this problem is one of the worst parts of the article: "I am personally mortified," Self Editor in Chief Lucy Danziger told USA TODAY. “I had no idea that Monika had been through cancer. It was an error. It was a stupid mistake. We shouldn’t have run the item.”
Yes, it’s in (horrifically) bad taste to mock a cancer survivor’s appearance. But it should already have been in bad taste to insult runners for wearing whatever makes them happiest. Tutus aren’t hurting anyone, they don’t impact anyone but the runner wearing it. What does it matter? Why would Self care? It’s a fun trend that pumps up runners and allows many women to feel girly, whimsical and fun on their big race day. What could be wrong about that? Could the problem really be that, oh I don’t know, women athletes aren’t catering to the male gaze for once?
Don’t forget that women’s magazines are still here to sell you the ideal image of beauty and health. Just because a magazine is about fitness doesn’t mean that they have your best interest in mind - It’s in their best interest to keep you feeling insecure, unsure, and ugly. Otherwise, why would you ever need their advice?