Ladies, I want to hear from you on this. MSN reports:
[Allyn Rose,] [t]he 24-year-old Miss DC[,] plans to undergo a double mastectomy after she struts in a bikini and flaunts her roller skating talent. She is removing both breasts as a preventative measure to reduce her chances of developing the disease that killed her mother, grandmother and great aunt.
As a man, I don’t really have a way to understand what goes in to making this decision because I don’t have breasts and I’m not a woman. I don’t even have a valid comparison. Initially, I tried to compare this to a man with a family history of testicular cancer having his testicles removed as a preventative measure. However, that is not really a fair comparison.
Ms. Rose is a beauty queen and one result of her competing in beauty pagents is she is objectified and sexualized. Breasts are hyper-sexualized in American culture and can be an important part of a woman’s identity, whether as an object of desire of their partner or as a mother and everywhere in between.
I do not want to get into a discussion about the rights/wrongs of Americans’ social views about breasts. I want to hear your reaction to a piece of news like this. Is your reaction to this news similar to the reaction that you had when Christina Applegate had her double mastectomy? Why or why not? Do you have a family member or close friend who has had a similar experience? How was your reaction to that news different or similar to these other stories?