I had lunch with a devout Christian last week. She fervently supports the Anti-Cosmo Mission…which isn’t surprising. But what may surprise you is the name of the woman who is just as enraged about this magazine as I am.
Her name is Victoria Hearst. And she happens to be the granddaughter of the very man who created Cosmo, William Randolph Hearst. By joining our cause, Ms. Hearst is saying – very publicly – that the Hearst publishing empire is doing the world a disservice by continuing to publish this trash and freely allow young people to purchase it. She is bravely standing up to those in her own family who choose dollar signs over the damage this magazine is causing young women worldwide. This is a story she told me:
I was at the grocery store with one of my dance students. I decided to test my theory that even a child could buy Cosmo, no problem. I handed her some cash, a Cosmopolitan magazine, and sent her to a completely empty checkout line. There were no adults. There was no way this girl could have been mistaken for someone who was purchasing the magazine with someone older. Now, this was your typical Cosmo with headlines like “75 Sex Tips!” and “Hot Ways to Please Your Man!” But the checkout girl took this child’s money, gave her the change, and handed her the magazine without blinking an eye.
Over soup and sandwiches, Ms. Hearst and I made a pledge to team up in our fight to get Cosmo sold to adults only. We brainstormed how we can shield innocent children from the headlines that scream out sexy tips, month after month. We are both shocked and saddened by the fact that underage children can freely buy a pornographic magazine with articles that encourage girls to act like prostitutes with one-night stands.
Ms. Hearst told me that her grandfather didn’t originally conceive Cosmo to be a pornographic magazine. She described how during the 60s, as the magazine struggled, the owners looked to the new feminism movement as the editorial answer. But the publishers made a decision that breaks my heart – they equated feminism with degradation. They decided that being an independent woman means throwing away the notion that your body is holy. That your relationships are holy. Cosmo magazine became the magazine that tells you to lose all of your self respect in your quest to “get a guy.”
I don’t have a problem with adults making the choice to read Cosmo. If they want to put garbage in their heads, that is their right. But Ms. Hearst and I BOTH have a problem with the magazine being easily available to impressionable, vulnerable children under 18.
Ms. Hearst revealed many fascinating stories about how she has worked through the years to get the publishers of Cosmo to do the right thing. I wish I could recount all of them. But suffice it to say, even someone with the last name Hearst can’t get the magazine sold to adults only without your help.
We need at get at least 100,000 signatures if we want to truly get the attention this issue deserves. Let’s get the government to turn their minds to what is REALLY important. I want a Senate hearing. If our government is so interested in prosecuting a few baseball players accused of taking steroids, why don’t they pay attention to the pornography that is on display to thousands upon thousands of children in supermarket checkout lines?
Please! Tell all your friends to come to our Change.org petition and join the cause. Come to the anticosmomission.com website and add your name to the mailing list. Ask your local supermarket to pull Cosmo out of the checkout line.
Together we can do this. We have God … and now we have Victoria Hearst … on our side.