Photos offensive

2015-04-30 17:03

TSHEDISO MOTOBATSI, Welkom:

I AM an African male in his 30’s and I uphold cultural values, especially Southern Sotho values.

My opinion will not be based on culture and not on human rights because I will have to search and read further in order to be precise. However, I believe those upholding positive morality will agree with me to respect the human body.

I am referring to photos published in Express Goldfields andamp; Northern Free State (18 March), captioned as “flexibility and strength” of Gaelebale Molehe. What was depicted in those pictures, is disrespectful to the women concerned.

To be clear, the first and second pictures show the underwear of the said daughter, sister and cousin of someone. I do not know if permission was granted by herself or anyone to have those pictures published in the newspaper.

I feel it is not correct. Young males about to become fathers and grandfathers “of thought” read this newspaper. Pictures like these can only serve to undermine the values they hold regarding the female body.

I believe the great daughters, women and mothers “of thought” also uttered the “sies” expression my wife did when she saw these pictures.

I also know that players in a netball match go through certain motions, but is it really necessary to publish pictures showing them in unflattering positions? Surely you could have used other pictures taken during the same match. If that particular picture had to be used, why did you as the editor, not recommend that a black dot be put on that part displaying the underwear?

I am not a judge, but I have observed that the temple of Father God is being dishonoured by (intentionally or unintentionally) displaying nakedness by individuals where it is not required. Some of us, myself included, are not interested in this fashion. Therefore, if this is the new direction X even if this is a free newspaper providing valuable information about our surroundings X one will think twice before taking it and reading it again.

Dear reader,

We understand the cultural differences, however, action sport photos often show the underwear athletes are wearing, which they feel comfortable in. The same applies to

boxers and football players.

Publishing the action sports photos in question was not to disrespect or undermine women by any stretch of the imagination and this applies to the woman or player in question.

It was not published to expose her “private assets” as some people may perceive.

The action of sports participation makes it virtually impossible not to show the underwear sports people are wearing at times.

An example: In women’s tennis the likes of Serena Williams, Martina Hingis, Maria Sharapova and many others are often depicted serving with their underwear clearly showing. That is the reality of the sport and part of a news photographer’s job is to show it as it is.

Action sports photos display the prowess, agility and abilities of the participants.

As to whether or not consent was obtained to publish the photos, the player singled out, and other participants, have knowledge of the photographs being taken, hence they were all identified by their names and surnames.

Visit www.express-news.co.za to view the sports photos in question and share your views. X Ed

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