Slutbucks!

I was using the treadmill at our local gym listening to my iPod and occasionally glancing at several TV monitors in front me when my eyes caught the tickertape running at the bottom of one of the monitors. It said something like, “Offended by the naked mermaid, Christians are boycotting Starbucks.” I later found out that the whole fuss was about Starbucks changing its logo from the mermaid with a bikini-top to a bare-breasted one. OH MY GOD…

Let’s be honest! How many of you have ever looked at the logo on a Starbucks’ cup? I thought we went to Starbucks for its overpriced cup of coffee, which has to be ordered in Italian—it took me a long time learning how to say “tall” instead of “small”, “latte” instead of “with some freaking cream” and recently, watching my favorite game show, the Cash Cab, I found out that “Venti” in Italian means twenty. For all the years of drinking Starbucks, I had never noticed that the logo on the cup in my hand was of a mermaid with a bikini-top, but thanks to boycotters, now we all will. This brings me to the following question: why in God’s name, are so many Christians so preoccupied with sex???

An overweight friend of mine who worked for a Christian organization went on a diet and lost a lot of weight. Like so many overweight people, she had given up trying to look feminine, so for years she had worn over-sized blouses, skirts, pants and muumuus to hide her weight. After losing all that weight, she bought herself a whole new wardrobe, which fit her slim body. Her husband wanted her to look her best.

Seeing her for the first time after she had lost the weight, I was amazed at how gorgeous she looked. At first, I did not even recognize her. No, she did not look sexy or immodest, just feminine. I never asked her this, but I know she felt great about herself. I am willing to bet that because of the way she felt about herself, her productivity at work or in life in general must have improved. The feeling did not last very long. Within couple of weeks, she was pulled into the HR office and was given a thrashing about her clothes and how a Christian woman should not be a stumbling block to her male co-workers. Apparently some of the men had reported her to the HR. Combined with the death of her mother, the rebuke pushed her over the edge and she gained all the weight back. However, the HR never bothered to pull her into the office and give her a talking on how being overweight is not good for HER health. I guess being a stumbling block to MALE co-workers is much greater offense than dropping dead of a heart attack due to one’s weight.

Have you read the book, “Persepolis”? It is written by the Iranian writer and artist, Marjane Sartrapi who writes about her life in today’s Iran. They also made a movie out of the two book series. It is in French with English subtitles and has won several awards. In a part of the book she talks about the day she misses her bus by just a few seconds. Hoping to catch it she begins to chase after it when she hears, “Hey—blue coat! Stop running!” She stops to turn around and face two bearded revolutionary guards armed with their machine guns. This is how their conversation goes:

“Madam, why were you running?”

“I’m very late! I was running to catch my bus.”

“Yes… But… when you run, your behind makes movements that are… How do you say…Obscene!”

Here is a woman who is covered from head to toe. All any man can barely see is her face and still she is told that when she runs her behind moves in an obscene way. I love her response to those morality policemen, “WELL THEN DON’T LOOK AT MY ASS!”

“Yes!” you might say, “But the Bible talks about women being modest.” I agree. Women should dress modestly. However, my problem is defining the term, “modest”. In Iran, for a woman, modesty means to be wrapped in a black shroud from head to toe, and still she can be accused of being immodest by some men.

No, the problem is more with the men who are so preoccupied with sex, i.e. a male-driven Christian organization that changes the acronym, RAC to ARC because according to its new leaders, the RAC could be understood as RAC, which refers to women’s breasts, although the acronym had been used in prior years without any complaints. Another example is a Christian leader who demands a couple of abstract painting, which had been hanging on the office walls for months, be removed because if one were to stare at them long enough one could see women’s breasts.

If I am not mistaken, our Lord’s mandate on not looking at women with impure eyes was given to MEN. Do you know why? Because He knew that we men are visual, that we get excited just by putting the quarter in the vending machine’s slot. It doesn’t matter how many layers of clothing a woman puts on, her behind can still move in what we men might consider obscene. If this is the case, don’t blame the woman. Do what Jesus commanded you, “Quit looking at her ass.”

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18 thoughts on “Slutbucks!

  1. I have held this idea (it’s not my responsibility as much as it is the male’s) since I was ten when boys began to notice me and talk to me about my breasts, regardless of what I wore. So I began wearing XXL shirts and eventually started to hide under a few extra pounds. I believe there are so many overweight Christian women because if we are fat then certainly no man would lust after us. (HA!!) We dress in frumpy clothes for the same reason. Somehow, we have forgotten that I Peter 3.3 says, “do not let your adornment be merely outward…” We teach and think it says, “do not let your adornment be outward, let it be a quiet and gentle spirit which is pleasing to the Lord.” (I’m typing from memory.) We do console ourselves with this thought, “At least the men who love us love us for who we really are not just because we look cute.” (Meanwhile the husbands are longing for the hottie down the street, in their minds, or on the Starbuck’s cup. Different, but related topic, I know….Song of Solomon is all about Christ and the Church, right?)

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  2. What a very entertaining post! People can be so ridiculous. I want to live somewhere where I, and every woman can be free to be feminine, and embrace their sexuality in a healthy way. I agree that there’s a problem with these men who are having such a problem with women’s bodies. In some lands, the normal dress for women is no shirt, and a long skirt. In some cultures women show a lot more skin, and everybody seems to be ok with it. Every culture has a different definition of modesty. Men should accept that the way a woman’s body is, is simply just they way it is. And it’s good, and not just seductive.

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  3. Well said, Shah. Nice to hear a Christian male who gives females a break. I want to look for that movie ‘Persepolis.’ Sounds intriguing.-Joy

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  4. I couldn’t agree more. Being a woman who is over weight but still curvaceous has its struggles. It is very hard to find tops that are not turtle necks that don’t show a little chest skin. Not saying my boobs are hanging out or anything, but I would rather feel great about what I am wearing than be overly concerned about what other’s think I am trying to portray. Shah, you say it the best way, stop looking!!! It is so important for women to feel feminine and unique and in my experience the Christian community has put too many limitations on women and focused all the attention on what we wear. There are more important things. Honestly, do you think that its really gonna make a difference if I go to heaven or hell if I wear a tank top when its 95 degrees out. Well better make sure and wear a turtle neck and die of heat exhaustion instead, at least you go out knowing that you were modest. (can you feel the scarcasm?_

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  5. Persepolis is a movie everyone who does not understand us should go to. The part about sex well one thing is sex another is being so screwed up as these gringos, if they were out fishing for men instead of being in offices building “strategies” maybe they would be more real! As always Shah you are great!

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  6. Truly laughing out loud. Your last remark reminds me of the old comedic line, “I’m so horny the crack of dawn is not safe!” Some would have you believe that Satan invented breasts – but I know who I think every time I get to play with my wife’s – and it ain’t Satan!

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  7. I like your blog.How do you think it will go over? Men having to be accountable themselves for their own thoughts? Should be interesting!As you pointed out, it is not always about what women wear or don’t wear….it is the track a man’s thoughts go down, but it is nice to know he can alter the track, if only he would be willing.Anyway, take care of yourself.

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  8. At the end of the day, I’ll still put bombs on target and blow shit up to make sure tight-ass Christians have the freedom to boycott a fictional mermaid with a gigantic rack. Pass the collection plate, folks, because combating my caffeinated libido is a much better use of your money than sending care packages to deployed troops. Amen.

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  9. Hey shah I was actually able to sit down and read this fully. Dude you have an amazing point I only wish more christians thought like you do on this topic…I get into more and more arguments with people about stuff like this. these hardcore Christian activist who are activist who are so wrapped up in their own rights.

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  10. Hi! An new reader here sent over by Lydia and grateful for it.As a former Christian pastor, and as a woman, I have more stories on this topic than the page can hold. I agree with you about men taking responsiblity for their own thought-lives. It basically boils down to “deal with your own shit.” Doesn’t it?I don’t think we realize how damaging these types of behaviors are to women. May healing come! Rachelle @ magpie-girl.com

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  11. Hi Rachelle, thanks so much for taking the time to read my blog. I would love to hear your stories. Yes, I believe in any issue, as you said, we ultimately have to deal with our own shit. Unfortunately, this being a man’s world, we have made the decision that if women don’t shake their asses, we, men, will not be tempted to cheat on our wives.Shah

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  12. Shah: I am so glad you wrote about the starbucks logo. I was disgusted when I heard that “Christians” were boycotting because of that. How totally stupid and irrelevant! By the way, is that really true what you said about the quarter and the vending machine? I never knew stuff like that. Great blog! What are you doing for a living now?

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