Thursday, March 15, 2012

Ladies & Race

Tia Norfleet
March is Women's History Month and since we're coming off of Black History Month, I've decided to combine the two. Now "Ladies & Race" kind of has a double meaning in this post. I'm not only referring to the race of a woman, I'm also referring to the race within a woman.

Tia Norfleet is a 24 year old black woman who's looking to make her way onto the NASCAR circuit. Now, many ladies have already paved the way for women in racing, most recently, Danica Patrick. However, Tia has another trailblazer to follow who just happens to be her dad. Bobby Norfleet was a racer who thrived back in the 90's and helped NASCAR gain some awareness in the black community.

However, there is something that I hope Tia avoids: being sexualized. Danica Patrick has already fallen into that pit by doing Maxim and the Go Daddy commercials. Because men, who represent a majority of racing fans, have turned her into a visual fantasy, she has to be better than just "good" in order to be taken seriously in racing.

When women get involved in predominantly male-viewed sports, I think that it's a bad thing for them to succumb to the pressures of getting rich and subjecting themselves to being sexualized. I'm a huge fan of mixed-martial arts fighter, Meisha Tate (although she was beaten pretty badly the other day by Ronda Rousey). Meisha is a great fighter and has done some pretty exciting things in her MMA matches. She has also posed for magazines and websites in less-than-revealing clothing. She has a ton of male fans, but are they flocking towards her because of her fighting skills or the fact that she's hotter than fish grease on a Mississippi farm? Or both?

Meisha Tate
So, there's a thin line between 'famous for what you do' to 'famous for how you look.' I know it's wrong for men to sexualize women as we do. Face it, we're Neanderthals. However, despite the fact that it's wrong, it's reality. And as long as there are women who will take booty shots on camera, there will always be men who will be in the market for it. There's a time and place for everything and I get that to some people, their bodies are all the talents that they have. But, if you possess a talent to compete in a sport or even an everyday place of business, then why belittle those talents by taking it all off? I'm just hoping that Tia Norfleet has more photos like the below and makes her mark in NASCAR for how she 'drives cars' rather than how she 'drives men crazy.'

Do you approve of women taking it off to get awareness in male-viewed events?


  1. I think sexuality is an advantage women have over men, and they have the ability to use that to their advantage.

    All is fair in love, war, and business. If she can use her slammin bod to her benefit, let her.

    (to the chagrin of feminists everywhere)

    1. LOL! Yeah, I'm sure Gloria Allred will be after you soon.

    2. This feminist says she should do whatever she wants, especially if it's making her good money and she's doing it because she wants to.

      I don't know how I would feel if I were the only woman doing something in an all-male arena, but I don't think taking my clothes off would help me feel like I'm being taken seriously. But, different strokes...

    3. Well, if she chooses to go the sexy route, I won't hate on her. It's totally her decision to do what pays the bills. However, I think I'd take her career more seriously if she just raced.

  2. *Bitch-smacks Brandon*

    Ugh. I hate hate hate women who resort to using their appearance and/or sexuality to promote something they WANT to be taken seriously just seems counter-intuitive.

    I disagree vehemently with what Idahomie says about "if she can use her slammin bod to her benefit, let her." (although - no loss of love for mah homie, B-Money!) Why? Because you may have another woman who possesses more skill, more qualifications, or more WHATEVER than the smokin' hot chick...but because the smokin' hot chick flashes some cleavage - she will always get more attention, likely get the job (or whatever accomplishment is sought), and ultimately undermine the credibility of women who legitimately work hard, thus making that glass ceiling even higher. As far as women using their sexuality to get over on men - well, the sad fact is - B-Money is absolutely correct - men are powerless. I'm not excusing it - I'm just saying that men will take your "nekkid ankle" and turn it into something sexual, automatically rendering them a full 20 points lower on the IQ-scale. You can imagine what happens if some purposeful nekkidness takes place...

    I hope that Tia doesn't fall prey to exploiting her sexuality in the racing circuit. She is a beautiful woman and could totally take advantage of it - but she'd lose a lot of credibility, imho. By the way - are there more women race car drivers? And are any of them ugly? Do only pretty chicks get the green light to roll with the boys???

    1. Good question there at the end, Reck. I only know of four female racers off the top of my head and I don't think either is ugly. They might not be Halle Berry, but they're not ugly.

      Your analogy about the better-looking women getting the jobs over the more qualified, but average-looking women is true. I see it everyday on ESPN and FOX News.


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