BALTIMORE — If you know comic Amy Schumer, you know she like to stir it up! When asked who she was wearing Sunday night at the Emmys, she said Vivienne Westwood, Tom Ford shoes and an O.B. Tampon!
This week, it only took Schumer one word on Instagram to get people buzzing. She re-posted a photo of side-by-side issues of Girl’s Life and Boys’ Life magazines.
She pointed out the Boys’ Life Magazine cover encourages young men to “Explore Your Future” and “Be what you want to be” while Girls’ Life offers “Fall Fashion You’ll Love,” Dream Hair,” and “Wake up pretty!”
Schumer’s reaction? “No.” With those two letters, she got more than 87,000 likes.
Houstonian Jordan Harris agrees with the comedian’s assessment, “Obviously, there’s a huge gender bias between what girls are supposed to do and what boys are supposed to do.”
While others also support Schumer, saying the magazine is enforcing traditional gender roles.
“I feel like it’s steering the boys on the right path, but for girls, it’s kinda teaching them to be a girl — just be domestic,” says 20-something Vernette Lewis. “While the man is being a professional.”
J.T. Trauver says he thinks the message Girls’ Life is sending is outdated, “Most girls nowadays, as we continue to progress in society, are more goal-oriented and want to know how they can become doctors and lawyers.”
Kim Tolias is a an associate professor at Baylor College of Medicine. She said she worries for her daughter and other girls growing up today.
“I think this is pervasive all throughout our society, so I think it’s a problem that this is the majority of the messages that girls are receiving,” Kim Tolias said.
On the other hand, Stacey Moreno disagrees.
“I don’t make a big deal about it because girls who are secure with who they are, they don’t pay attention to this stuff,” Moreno said.
This is nothing new for girls’ magazines, Harris said.
“They’ve always been like that,” Harris said. “Always just full of quizzes and ways to make yourself look pretty. And that’s pretty much it.”
Girls’ Life publisher Karen Bokram told The Stir folks should not judge topics such as hair, makeup and fashion as silly.
“They’re real at the moment,” she said, for her readers.
Bokram also threw a little shade on parents, saying 85 percent of the magazine’s circulation is subscriptions. If you want your girls exposed to something else, she said buy them another magazine.
“I’m of the same thought,” Moreno said. “There’s all kinds of magazines. There’s all kinds of literature out there. Choose what you want.”
Tolias offers this advice for raising healthy-minded daughters: “I think we concentrate on telling them that you can do anything that boys can do. You have the whole world of opportunity in your future. You can be tough. You can say your opinion. You can think about math and science. We push math and science in our house.”
Bokram promises Girls’ Life offers more empowering stories inside the cover of the publication. What’s that they say about judging a book by its cover? Guess it goes for magazines, too.