The topic of “slut shaming” has been everywhere recently. With young girls looking up to the likes of Miley Cyrus, Lady Gaga and the girls of “Teen Mom,” our sisters/daughters/Wal-Mart checkout attendants are inundated with images of women gratuitously sexualizing themselves for attention.

And while it’s not wrong to teach young women that sex is a natural part of life and that they should feel confident in their sexuality, it might be wrong to teach them that they can only get ahead by baring it all.

That is the point behind a new blog post by Rashida Jones for Glamour magazine. The “Parks and Recreation” star, a well-spoken, educated feminist celebrity if there ever was one, took some flack for using the word “whore” in a tweet. The responses were mostly chastising:

“Stop policing how women dress #slutshaming”

“I used to look up to you for being a highly educated actress but now I think you’re a bit of a misogynist.”

“RU a whore?”

This led the “Celeste and Jesse Forever” star to write a response explaining her stance on the pervasiveness of whorishness and the critique of it in pop culture. “There is a difference, a key one,” Jones writes, “between ‘shaming’ and holding someone accountable.”

The real problem, according to Jones, is just how much there is for us to look at and analyze:

I understand that owning and expressing our sexuality is a huge step forward for women. But, in my opinion, we are at a point of oversaturation. It’s like when TV network censors evaluate a show’s content. Instead of doing a detailed report of dirty jokes or offensive words, they will simply say, “It’s a tonnage issue.” One or two swear words might be fine; 10 is too many. Three sexual innuendos is OK; eight is overkill. When it comes to porn imagery and pop culture, we have a tonnage issue.

Jones goes on to give some advice to the people she thinks need it the most: record execs (asking them to apply their own moral parameters to the artists they oversee), women (“Let’s at least try to discuss the larger implications of female sexuality on pop culture without shaming each other.”), men (“WHERE ARE YOU??? Please talk to us about how all this makes you feel.”) and pop stars (telling them that although they may not want to be role models, they are and need to act like it…at least sometimes).

Slut shaming will never cease as long as the internet exists, but maybe we can start/change/encourage a better dialogue and create better ways to respond to it, like Rashida Jones has done.

J-Connection: Rashida Jones’ mother is Ashkenazi Jewish, and Jones was raised in Reform Judaism.

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