LOCAL > Columnist blasted online after piece on 'chestless, man-like' female Olympians

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News

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Olympians (L to R) Sanya Richards-Ross of the United States, Yarisley Silva of Cuba and Federica Pellegrini of Italy. Yüksel Aytuğ wrote female Olympians looked like men. AP, AFP, REUTERS photos

Olympians (L to R) Sanya Richards-Ross of the United States, Yarisley Silva of Cuba and Federica Pellegrini of Italy. Yüksel Aytuğ wrote female Olympians looked like men. AP, AFP, REUTERS photos

Turkish columnist Yüksel Aytuğ caused an online firestorm on Aug. 8 after penning an article that criticized the Olympic Games for "killing womanhood."
Aytuğ's piece, titled "Womanhood is dying at the Olympics," was published in daily Sabah and the paper's website but quickly spread after angering readers by saying the Olympic Games were destroying the female figure by distorting women's bodies and that points should be added to female Olympians based on how feminine they looked. 
Aytuğ said women's associations should protest the Games and added that it was enough for him to "take a look at female swimmers" to reach that opinion. 
"Broad-shouldered, flat-chested women with small hips; [they are] totally indistinguishable from men. Their breasts – the symbol of womanhood, motherhood – flattened into stubs as they were seen as mere hindrances to speed," Aytuğ said. 
"I am not even talking about female javelin throwers, shot-put athletes, weightlifters, wrestlers and boxers," Aytuğ said. “Their appearance is just pathetic.”
Aytuğ said the Olympics forced women to "look more like men" in order to be successful and wrote about an ongoing "sporting violence against women," while criticizing what he called an understanding of "the manlier you look the more successful you are."
The columnist concluded by saying that female Olympians should be rewarded with additional bonus points based on how "feminine" they looked. "Otherwise we will destroy the grace and naïveté of women through the Olympics," he concluded.
Aytuğ was harshly criticized both by Twitter users and his female colleagues, who accused him of sexism and reducing the female identity to mere appearances. 
Melis Alphan of daily Hürriyet called Aytuğ's approach to women "sad," saying the writer "apparently had no idea of what the women's associations did" when suggesting that they protest the Olympics. 
Columnist Banu Tuna rhetorically asked Aytuğ if he deemed the term "woman" as a collection of breasts, legs and hips and suggested Aytuğ watch lingerie fashion shows instead of the Olympics. "Altuğ's column suggests the 'grace and naïveté' of women will be saved by Victoria's Secret angels," Tuna said.
The words "Yüksel Aytuğ" remained a worldwide trending topic on Twitter for several hours as users went on to slam the columnist. The tweets ranged from honest to tongue-in-cheek criticisms to straight-out insults. 
Some few users, however, said Aytuğ's views that women were subjected to forms of training that made their bodies lose their feminine appearance could have been acceptable if he had not become "lost" in his column by "delving too deeply into breasts and buttocks."


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Notice on comments

Caroline Carry

12/10/2013 2:48:02 PM

You are a disgrace to womankind. TWO WORDS- SPORTS BRAS. SO WHY DON'T YOU GO AHEAD AND PIPE DOWN. Why are you judging women by appearances if you can't even tell that they aren't wearing a normal bra? Plus like 1% of women are even IN the Olympics. So before you say ANYTHING AT ALL make sure your "information" is RIGHT.

Bob L'eponge

4/2/2013 1:46:03 PM

On top of the article it says: 199 people like this. Be the first of your friends. I'm just happy to see that none of my friends have liked that ridiculous article.

Lilly Davis

12/27/2012 4:02:34 AM

Well, like Jenna Marbles said, You can't tell what the women really look like, These women don't want their boobals hitting them in the face while they're swimming. And besides, you can tell apart the women from the men because women don't swim shirtless.

Kelly Liu

12/24/2012 5:17:03 AM

Hey Yüksel! It's called a SPORTS BRA!!!! Ever heard of it? It flattens your chest so your boobs won't fly all over the place!!!! How are you gonna do sports, when your boobs are hitting your face every second of the time?!?!

Adam Polk

11/13/2012 11:49:00 PM

HDN does not publish comments that contain hyperlinks to websites.

Valaki I

9/2/2012 12:04:23 PM

I could tell some experiences about having a breast at all when doing sports... Can you imagine a sportswoman or even a ballet dancer lady with huge tits swinging up and down at every jump? It would be not only ridiculous, but quite painful, too... This is the reason, why the active sporting women don't even try to get silicone implants. By the way, sportive ladies also have husbands, so I suppose this is not the only criteria of attractiveness - for a mentally sane man...

Valaki I

9/2/2012 11:46:24 AM

the columinst probably has never met any female actively sports. Look at any of them, even the russian rsg champion. Can anyone tell her masculine?! But she also has got small breasts and I bet she never ever tried to take any steroid, or anything else to increase muscles... Active and regular sport simply burns the body fat everywhere, and fat burning is not in connection with increasing the muscles, it is well known also for a beginner bodybuilder...

s hill

9/1/2012 3:16:42 PM

Well done Aytug for completely embarrassing Turkey with your ridiculous comments. What about male athletes who strap their junk down to compete more comfortably? or male swimmers who shave their entire bodies in order to swim faster? Will they get your 'bonus points' for womanliness?

Linda Paull

9/1/2012 2:25:43 PM

and the gold medal for being a total chauvinist goes to Yucel.

lulu ramala

8/23/2012 6:49:50 AM

Like Jenna marbles said. TWO WORDS. SPORTS BRAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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