CBS Houston is concerned that a Oklahoma City Thunder cheerleader was “too chunky” to do her job. In the article by Claire Crawford posted earlier this week, she ponders,
“The Rockets looked terrible in Game 1, but some say they weren’t the only bad-looking people on the court–we’re not trying to be ugly. We are just discussing what men like in women, specifically NBA cheerleaders.” It gets better–“This pretty blonde has been criticized by some folks in OKC for having ‘pudginess’ around her waistline. But if she’s comfortable wearing that tiny outfit and dancing for NBA fans, then good for her.”
Oh boy. Where do I begin? First of all, there was no need for this to be an article. It must be a really, really slow news week out west. Second, while the whole piece is rather gross, the last line is unbelievably snotty and juvenile. Also not necessary. Third, I’m shocked that woman would write this. How would Crawford like it if someone published an article asking if she was “too chunky to write?” Fourth, I think it’s rather said that pornography and the popular media have warped our ideas as to what a cheerleader should look like.
I remember watching some VH-1 special years ago where Toni Basil was talking about the video for her hit “Mickey,” which featured real college cheerleaders. She said people were shocked to see that these girls were solid, not the popular image of thin and big breasted with pigtails that Hollywood and the porn industry had been throwing around for years. (Crawford had in her post “Either way, I wish she had a little more up on top, if you know what I mean…” but it has since been removed) It makes perfect sense when you think about it–they’re dancing, they’re supporting the weight of several other people, so yeah, most cheerleaders need to be solid, they’re not all going to be lithe.
Now I know I’ve said this over and over again–body snarking doesn’t accomplish anything. By the looks of things, it seems that perhaps Crawford has a personal issue with Kelsey (the “fat” cheerleader in question) or maybe is throwing her own body issues out on her. Like I’ve said before, it’s easy. Physical appearance is the first thing we see, so why not call it out. “ooh, you don’t look the way cheerleaders are expected to, so I’m going to call you out on it. How dare you get success by dancing around in hot pants and a halter top and smiling while I’ve had to do something else to achieve my success, like talk shit in order to get page hits.” Crawford tried to defend herself on her Twitter account (which has been deleted) by saying that she wasn’t trying to be mean, she was just doing her job by reporting the story. What story? Again, there was absolutely no need for this article. It must be a really slow news day in Texas, or else Crawford really, really has it in for the “chunky” cheerleader–there was even a poll on the post that asked readers for their opinion on her body. A poll that asked readers for their opinion on her body.
I can’t be the only one sick of this foolishness, LivLunatics. Why must we judge so harshly, especially when it comes to women? I know I’ve asked this before, but I’m really curious. Do you have any insight?