by David McElroy
I don’t wear shirts with sexually suggestive drawings of women. (Or men, either, for that matter.) Call me a prude or a conservative, but I think it’s inappropriate and tasteless. Besides that, it’s disrespectful to the people you’re going to be around, especially women.
I don’t like the shirt that English scientist Matt Taylor wore Wednesday at an ESA briefing about the Rosetta mission. It’s ugly and the stylized artwork of scantily clad women is boorish and tasteless. Nobody working for me would be allowed to wear it for work. It’s unprofessional.
But the media firestorm attacking him is just as distasteful. Some people are calling it “misogyny” and saying this is why women allegedly feel unwelcome in science. Others are saying it creates a hostile environment for women. And on and on and on. (Do a Twitter search for #ThatShirt or #ShirtStorm.)
I object to the shirt on the grounds of taste and good judgment, but the hysterical objections I’m reading seem really overblown. The thing that bothers me most about the firestorm, though, is the obvious double standard.