Woman Behind #ShirtlessShamers2016 Highlights Ridiculous Double Standard

January 25th 2016

Ingrid Holmquist

Double standards for the way women dress are no new news. From the #FreeTheNipple movement to the #IAmMoreThanADistraction hashtag, women have been vocal about these unfair contradictions, especially on social media platforms. Particularly frustrating is the fact that when women dress in a way that exposes more skin or is "provocative," it is often viewed as a reflection of promiscuous sexual behavior. 

Last week, the hashtag #shirtlessshamers2016 began trending on Twitter, revealing yet another glaring double standard. It was started by Lindsey, the creator of Cards Against Harassment, who took to Twitter to point out men calling out women for being too scantily clad online. She pulled tweets from men shaming women for showing too much skin and juxtaposed them right next to photos they posted of themselves half-naked online. Imagine tweets of men describing their disdain for women who post sexy selfies right next to photos of the same men flexing their abs or showing off their tight-fitting boxer briefs. Whether it's ignorance of this contradiction or differing standards, Lindsey (@CardsAgstHrmsmt) set out on the mission to expose this hypocritical behavior.

In an interview with Cosmopolitan.com, Lindsey said, "any time women, especially young women of color, do something for their own enjoyment, it becomes a target for mockery or disdain," she said. "Most of the guys I feature on #shirtlessshamers2016 have a 'likes' list FULL of porn GIFs, so their issue doesn't seem to be with women naked or half-naked, but women doing those things for themselves." She added that, “the point is to critique a broader cultural double standard” saying that she doesn’t wish for this to create online harassment for the men in the tweets. She plans on posting a new #shirtlesshamers2016 collage tweet every day for 365 days in hopes that she runs out of tweet opportunities before the end of the year.

Related: Celebrity Women Who Have Fought Back Against Slut-Shaming 

This is, by far, not the first time social media has aided in critiquing the culture of slut shaming. A group of teens banded together last year online to criticize sexist school rules by using the hashtag #IAmMoreThanADistraction for pictures of themselves violating school dress codes showing visible bra straps, bare arms, wearing crop tops, miniskirts or short shorts. Such codes are said to make dressing for school stressful and can feel degrading when young women get escorted out of class for the way they dress while their male peers sport with ripped jeans and sagging pants that expose their behind, without consequence. 

The new #shirtlesshamers2016 hashtag proves once again that women are tired of being censored and publicly shamed for something that the opposite sex gets away with.