19 November 2014

Rosetta landing

ESA landed the Rosetta satellite on a comet!! I need to start with that fabulous statement.

The Internet community is in uproar over this. No, not the fact that a collection of people from different countries worked together for years to launch the satellite. Nope, not that they got the thing launched into space despite the huge amounts of debris surrounding the Earth. Ummm, no, not even the intricacies of figuring out how to get up to speed, catch up to the comet, land on it, and anchor itself down. No, the Internet is upset because of a shirt.

Yes, a shirt. Dr. Matt Taylor, who was in the public eye during the event, was wearing a bowling shirt with a bunch of cartoon women in black corsets printed all over it. And this is what some people are deciding is the important fact. So let's address this, shall we?

Women complain about being judged by their clothes all the time. From a woman news anchor wearing the same blouse more than once, to a larger bodied woman wearing a mini skirt or bikini, to a woman participating in the Slut Walk in skimpy clothes. Women are judged solely on their appearance in these cases....and it's exactly what people are doing to this man about his shirt. (Equality, right? Is this really the best equality we can have?) He is not being judged for his accomplishments, but for the shirt he wanted to wear because he felt good in it. If it's ok to wear a bikini when you have extra rolls as a woman then it is ok to wear a shirt with women all over it if you are a man. Seriously. And the complaint of 'I don't want that in my face, I feel assaulted by that' can be used to describe the man in the bowling shirt...or the fat woman in a bikini. Either way you are shaming a person based solely on clothing.

People are judgmental. I'm sure most of the Internet is aware of this by now. What the Internet seems to have conveniently forgotten is that those who judge others are also subject to judgment. If you get to decide what this man should have worn then someone else gets to decide what you wear. Would feminists stand for that? No? Then why should Dr. Taylor.

Nobody is forcing you to look at the shirt. If you don't like it, look away. You can read about the landing without looking at pictures of the shirt. You can listen to audio without watching video. As for the people that he works with not liking the shirt, well there are Human Resource Departments for that kind of thing. Would I stand for it at my workplace? No, nor would I stand for a woman wearing a skin tight dress so short it flashes her thong. I would complain in a mature manner to my HR department. But wear whatever you damn well please in your own time. Shame either case on the Internet? That's just infantile behaviour, IMHO.

Or maybe...maybe it was planned. Maybe the fact that this landing was done mostly by the European countries and the USA only played a small part was a problem. Maybe the ESA knew it wouldn't be big news on the Internet unless there was some kind of controversy. So maybe Dr. Taylor's bosses looked the other way possibly knowing what would happen. Do you think you would have known about the landing if you are not a science buff? How else would you have heard about it? Any publicity is good publicity, right?


Anonymous said...

So many words of support for your point I can't get them all out. So instead.


Anonymous said...

So, many of the people who read the internet are just idiots!! It took a lot of work to get that probe up and I was amazed that they were able to land it on an asteroid so far away. I just ignore those opinions, put my corset on and wash the floor!
Aunt Margaret