In a bid to keep the 55 year old magazine relevant on Monday, Sports Illustrated announced their woke plans to go full SJW with Halima Aden’s upcoming inclusion into the magazine’s best selling issue. The real question will be if this strategy can sell issues to their key demographic.
On their website Sports Illustrated stated, “We are absolutely thrilled to announce that Halima Aden is the newest member of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit family, making history as the first Muslim model to wear a hijab and burkini in the magazine.”
As you may already know, the hijab (along with the niqab and burka) is a garment forced upon Islamic women by both law, and cultural norms which isolates them from the world. It secures them firmly as second class citizens within the Muslim world. As a rule, women are seen as property.
They don’t enjoy the unalienable right to liberty the way women in the United States do. The hijab is merely one manifestation of this oppressively dehumanizing legal and socio-religious construct.
At 19 years old, Halima gained notoriety in the Miss Minnesota USA pageant for being the first woman to wear a hijab throughout the competition. Aden — a Kenyan born former refugee camp inhabitant turned Muslim-American model — will be traveling back to her country of birth for the controversial photo session with photographer Yu Tsai.
Her inclusion wearing the hijab and burkini into Sports Illustrated’s May 8th issue is no doubt a move to placate ardent intersectional feminists who have long castigated the magazine’s swimsuit issues for allegedly promoting the dehumanization and harmful commercialization of women.
Naturally, Sports Illustrated and Liberty Belles share a common foe in intersectional feminism — a foe that routinely proves it will devour itself like a snake eating its own tail if the moment suits it. However, the curiosity in this move is that Sports Illustrated appears to seek making intersectional feminism an ally. It won’t work.
Unsurprisingly, men in their thirties subscribe to Sports Illustrated at the rate of four times more often than women. Even more curious is that Sports Illustrated seems poised to throw this core demographic under the bus to satiate the intersectional feminist crowd.
Because we share the same audience, I would like to assure you right now that Particle9 Productions has absolutely no plans on ever producing a “Liberty Belles Calendar: Hijab/Burka edition.” I personally see it as antithetical to freedom. And we all know that the entire carefully crafted visage of the Liberty Belles is all about that Liberty life.
Still, it goes to show that when you’re Time Inc — and you own a $1 billion dollar brand — you can pretty much do whatever you want regardless of what your fan base expects of you. But, if visceral betrayal is your long term strategy, I wouldn’t expect it to remain a billion dollar enterprise for too long. Far be it from me to interrupt a competitor when they’re making a mistake though.