LOCAL > Columnist says he defended ‘motherhood’ in piece on ‘man-like’ Olympians


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Yüksel Aytuğ, 2010. Hürriyet photo

Yüksel Aytuğ, 2010. Hürriyet photo

Turkish columnist Yüksel Aytuğ has responded to worldwide criticism over his recent opinion piece that accused the Olympic Games of "killing womanhood" due to the physical impact it has on women athletes' bodies, saying he "had never been more misunderstood" in his life.
Aytuğ said his recent piece was "taken in the exact opposite" of the meaning he was going for, while stating that despite the online backlash, the article was now "the most liked article on the newspaper's Facebook page" he had ever written.
"I will say it upfront, my intention is not to watch beautiful female bodies at the Olympic Games," Aytuğ wrote today. "I wrote that piece thinking that it should be first women who would criticize the female body being forced to look like a man's body. I think this is a new method of insulting and putting pressure on women. I repeat: The Olympic success of female athletes should not be based on looking like men."
Continuing his defense, he said, "I tried to defend the female spirit, the female grace, and motherhood; that's all."
Aytuğ said that despite the popularity of the piece, he still wished to apologize to "anyone who may have been offended, even through misunderstanding,” including "all women, female athletes and everyone else like [Aytuğ] who cares about womanhood."
Aytuğ's piece, titled "Womanhood is dying at the Olympics," was published in daily Sabah and on 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.  
The piece caused international backlash when several foreign media outlets reported on Aytuğ's views, even prompting American YouTube personality Jenna Marbles to film a video response that went viral overnight.

YouTube personality enlightens Turkish columnist on sports bra

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News

YouTube personality Jenna Marbles has uploaded a video on her channel to explain to conservative Turkish columnist Yüksel Aytuğ how sports bras work after the latter wrote.... (Full report)


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Roxy R

8/15/2012 7:56:16 AM

I'm really suprised at how people still didn't get the autor's point!! didn't you understand? he already stated he is not interested in seeing the beauty of the participants. I agree with him, why on earth a woman has to ''look'' muscular to be considered strong enough, good enough to participate, or at least to have a chance to win some medal? That was what he meant!!


8/11/2012 12:34:33 PM

This man has proven he knows nothing about Biology! A woman is just as capable of producing a muscular physic as a man. Why should muscles be deemed 'manly'? Is it because of sexist attitudes based on women who sit at home and do little physical work or exercise and whose bodies are flabby? If it can be achieved by a man, it can be achieved by a woman and therefore shouldn't be deemed as either 'feminine or masculine'. He grew his hair after all - should we think of him as feminine?

Engin Atik

8/10/2012 2:50:22 PM

We are not commenting because next time we will be accused of not being manly enough. Just being cautious.

dogan kemal ileri

8/9/2012 8:28:29 PM

Not a single Turk commenting here....hmmm I am not sure who Red Tail is as he has to hide under a pseudonym so that just leaves me to comment from a reliable Turkish perspective.The writer of the article is justified in having his personal opinions and expressing them publicly through his media.He is clearly not attacking breastless women but stating the obvious fact that he missess the fememinity women use to have in abundance.Well so do I.Give me an intelligent sophisticated feminine woman....

Ryan James

8/9/2012 6:45:05 PM

Typical fare from Erdogan's favorite newspaper

Red Tail

8/9/2012 5:58:32 PM

Shah. Let women decide for themselves. They have not asked for your opinion and have no duty to listen to your stone age views of.what they should do, look like etc.

Red Tail

8/9/2012 4:49:21 PM

If this man is so concerned about beauty, I would suggest that first look at himself. He does not have the face of George Cloney nor the body of Brad Pitt. And his outfit does not exactly look like an elegant Italian either. It seems like he thinks that it is the duty of all women in the world to look attractive to him, but not that he himself has to do much about his looks. I guess he thinks he should be judged as journalist at work, but that women should be judged on beauty in their profession

Agnes Smith

8/9/2012 4:07:02 PM

Some women just don't have boobs. Quite normal. If you are a female athletes they are muscle and strapped up in a sports bra. I have been overwhelmed by the good lookers in these games. Men and women alike - truly compellingly beautiful humans which make the human race proud. Is this whole thing a patriotic response to why TK have not created great world leading athletes out of a population of 75 mil - more astouding than this pathetic attempt at jouralism.Sad, the readers who's eye are closed.

Jeff Howison

8/9/2012 3:58:03 PM

Mr. Aytug, you are digging yourself a hole that gets deeper with every new explanation. Do yourself -- and the rest of us -- a favor by not saying -- or writing -- anything more on this subject. People around the world should realize that this guy is typical of much of the crackpot journalism in today's Turkey.

mara mcglothin

8/9/2012 3:57:37 PM

Why are Turkish men so threatened with a strong healthy body of an athletic woman? hmmmm This guy clearly wrote this piece to get a rise out of us. Im not biting. Backward mentality, if genuine, should not be rewarded.
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