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The Devaluing of Women

February 27, 1993

On Feb. 16, The Times printed two articles that dealt with the devaluing of women. The "serious" article in the Business section ("Throwing in a Towel") covered Hyundai's decision to boycott the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. The "fun" article in Calendar ("Undressed With Someplace to Go") showed Marky Mark at a book-signing party autographing a female fan's chest.

Apparently there's something insidious and violence-provoking about men looking at attractive women in swimsuits. But it's "entertainment" when a "teen-something" allows her breasts to be autographed. And it's OK to print a picture showing it in The Times.

Women posing in swimsuits is not degrading, and I don't believe the swimsuit issue promotes violence. I do believe that the young woman pictured in Calendar devalued herself.

I point an accusatory finger at parents who believe values and self-respect are the responsibility of schools. My second " j'accuse " is leveled at The Times, for printing a photograph that debases all women. JANE JOHNSON

Venice

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