Sexual abuse victim against printing ad

Dear Sarah Garrecht:

Regarding the controversy over the Playboy ad, like J.B. ("Reader upset that she's 'bombarded by ad," March 20) I too felt "bombarded" by the ad. And like J.B., I also was sexually abused. As a young girl (along with my little sister) was molested by a couple of boys in my neighborhood who, after becoming aroused by a pile of Playboys and other "common" porno magazines, decided to experiment with my sister and me. This has left me with very little tolerance for the porno garbage that most people in our warped society seem to accept.

I am disappointed that, if the situation presents itself again, you would be "happy to oblige" ("Ad flap misses issue," March 21) in printing another ad for Playboy. You are right, of course, in saying that we see pictures similar to the Playboy ad, such as the swimsuit ads, the tanning booth ads and other ads trying to sell different products. However, the Playboy ad was meant to sell an entire issue (if not a subscription). Scattered subtly throughout these magazines are the more damaging images cartoons and pictorials showing women in demeaning, degrading and dehumanizing depictions. These kinds of magazines sell only one theme, whether subtle or overt, that women are objects of pleasure to be used by men to satisfy themselves, intrinsically disregarding a woman's feelings, thoughts, desires or needs. By accepting and publishing their advertisement, you have directly supported that theme.

One more note, a simple ad is not very harmful to most of the population I suppose. But there are those of us that are aware of and see keenly the uglier, debased, repulsive side of pornography; many are direct victims of this insidious perversion. I may not change your opinion about printing the ad, but I do ask that you please be aware of us the next time you print ads such as these and know that they are not as harmless as you believe.


(Name withheld on request)

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