On July 27, Spain’s Ministry of Equality, whose Orwellian name deserves an analysis all its own, launched a body positivity campaign along with its Institute for Women. A Tweet from Irene Montero, the Minister of Equality, encouraged women of all body types to go to the beach, telling them:
“all bodies are valid and we all have the right to enjoy life the way we are without guilt or shame.”
It was filed under the hashtag #ElVeranoEsNuestro, “the summer is ours.”
Considering that Spain is widely known for being a country where most people seem comfortable with their bodies, people of all shapes, sizes, genders, and ages sunbathe nude on the many spectacular beaches, and men suffer from body dysmorphia at rates equal to women, many wondered why the Ministry of Equality needed such a campaign in the first place.
The answer was made clear when London-based model Nyome Nicholas-Williams filed an official complaint with the Spanish government for using her image in the campaign without her consent. This was followed by another London-based model Sian Green-Lord who accused the Ministry of Equality of not only using her photo without her permission but editing out her prosthetic leg.
Contradictory Value Signaling
Although they claimed to be supporting body positivity, the Spanish ministry seemingly had no problem blatantly implying that these women are normally judged for their bodies at the beach when they otherwise might not have had any self-consciousness whatsoever. Moreover, they had no problem using their bodies for their own goals without their consent.
This makes it clear that Spain’s Ministry of Equality doesn’t care about equality or body positivity, which explains the contradictions above. They only care about being politically expedient and creating the social division that gives them power and keeps bureaucrats like Irene Montero feeling important.