Iesha Marie, a popular eye point on Instagram, tweets: "Bad bitches get the best view..." She's gorgeous. Her body is full-grown, and aside from what I assume are breast implants her beauty is relatively natural and casual.
If she has any level of intellect, any knowledge of herself being more than a "bad bitch" -- it is not exemplified on her several hundred posts on the internet. Men and women drape her with dozens of "compliments" for any image she puts up.
Iesha and a plethora of women like her have created personas -- sex personified, a dream. Either the dream of men who want to sleep with her or have her as their monument of conquest arm candy, or the dream of all the girls and women aspiring for this version of beauty and the attention it yields.
I've known and even dated women like Iesha. Personally, the mystery and wonder for me is when does it start? When does the girl with the name and the family and the birth record cross over into Bad Bitchdom?
The age of selfie photos and nude-in-the-bathroom-mirror poses brings forth a new layer to the epidermis of the objectification of women. Mainly because new leaps in technology, access and social media enable women -- particularly young women -- to instantly self enroll in the objectified woman brigade.
In just under six months, Instagram mobile app usage went up 25 percent from December 2013 to May of this year, and is reportedly used by 200 million people a month -- according to statistics published recently.
An even more whopping figure is that 37 percent of all the Americans between the ages of 18-29 have an Instagram account!
Five to 10 years prior to now, a girl had to get selected in a music video casting call, succeed at being a groupie or be cattle called through an agency to get the honor and privilege of showing her ass to a million people. But now, thanks to Instagram and the like -- a woman can bypass all the bureaucracy of yesteryear to getting your ass shown in public! Now she can walk in the bathroom, take off her clothes and SHAZAAM: Bonafide Bad Bitchdom has commenced...
And the attention is not the only incentive. "Bad Bitches" can build a whole career around Instagram fame. Crossing over 100,000 followers on Instagram warrants regional fame no different from a rapper with the same type of following. And for a club promoter, girls famous for nothing more than having their picture taken (or taking it themselves) become an asset worth hiring to attract patrons to a party or event. Her pictures go from the internet to gracing flyers. That can award her a sizable income from promoters and liquor sponsors, especially considering the (lack of) amount of labor that goes into her "job."
The wildest thing to me is the fact that women with the attention of 100-300,000 people at any given moment have nothing more to say or offer than, "Hey, look at my ass, and by the way, I'm a Bad Bitch." It is simply wasted power...
I've identified and defined three categories that facilitate this phenomenon:
Pretty, uneventful, with a narcissistic persona. Glam girls are self-obsessed with online profiles consisting almost 100 percent of pictures they take of themselves, their clothing, nearly nude bodies, money and material items. Additionally they have elaborate photo shoots dedicated to them that aren't for any type of print advertisement, billboard or fashion outlet -- rather for their Instagram pages and websites. Often referred to as Baddies, Bad Bitches and Super Bad.
Bodacious Body Girls:
These girls have entire online profiles charged by the size of their butts and or breast. Thick, juicy, bangin', phat, ass, stallion and twerk are terms associated with them in tags and hashtags. Explicit and suggestive photos of their breast and behinds cover their timelines. BBG's also post hundreds of videos of themselves bouncing their behinds.
Fake Cause Girls:
An interesting study for sure, Fake Cause Girls use fitness or other healthy lifestyles as a premise to post hundreds of pictures of their bodies in the bathroom and at the gym... They are not dietitians or licensed fitness trainers. Nonetheless, in 148 characters or less (never an article) they post about fitness and ab work partnered with pictures in swimsuits, tight workout clothing and sports bras. In some really shameless occurrences, pictures of healthy food choices on a plate are posted by Fake Cause Girls, which seems innocent -- but their cleavage always seems to make the photo.
I interviewed one popular Houston based "event host" who asked to remain nameless. She sent me paystubs to authenticate making over 10k in the month of January alone for club walk thru's and appearances. She was open and candid about her choice:
"It's easy and I feel safe. I'm good and feeding myself. A lotta these girls get caught up cause they meet these athletes and entertainers and get all twisted. Please. I get my money and go home. Take my sexy (obscenity) off, put on my sweats and go to bed."
Her frankness and casual attitude about her life being dedicated to putting on her sexy ( ) and then walking into clubs for a few hours speaks to my concern though. Is there a larger negative affect of so many young women aspiring and putting energy into building these types of relatively purposeless profiles? Sure bad bitches get a better view, but do they own the penthouses, planes, and VIP sections their peering from? Nah...
And more importantly, what is their view of themselves? Does beauty in a young woman, or more so peoples reaction to it, distract her from exploring herself internally? Do any of these women have an opinion about politics, their communities, education, or business? And not "These hating ass bitches need to stay out of my business..." No, I mean business. Which compels another question: Is our society interested in hearing anything from women that fit into typical standards of beauty?
When a teenage girl in high school is beautiful does her family and community encourage her to join science clubs and learn to play an instrument? Or is she more likely to be reminded of how pretty her face is (something that she had nothing to do with: her mother + her father = her) everyday and be encouraged to put on a skirt and pom poms and learn a cheer, or be a model/actress? Yeah...
When her intellect and character not being fed or challenged is partnered with illustrious attention she can garner at the click of a smartphone, what is created? And by the time she's 27 years old which is ancient in this environment, what is left for her to build on? Will "Bad Bitch @Instagram 2014-2020" fit on a resume?
I'm not saying there's anything wrong with feeling beautiful and wanting to flaunt it. I also believe that women should be free to express their sexuality however they choose. To me the issue is the wackness of the one dimensional pretty girl. Or the pretty girl that has intelligence and depth, but is taught or chooses to hide it and just be another pretty girl.
Our society should validate the whole woman of all renditions of beauty, to lead with her mind and let her outer beauty follow suit.