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On December 13th, Wonder Woman was removed from her position as Honorary Ambassador for the United Nations. Over 45,000 people signed an online petition to have her stripped of her position. The petition said that “Although the original creators may have intended Wonder Woman to represent a strong and independent ‘warrior’ woman with a feminist message, the reality is that the character’s current iteration is that of a large breasted, white woman of impossible proportions, scantily clad in a shimmery, thigh-baring bodysuit.”
I don't think these petitioners know what they're talking about. How is feminism hurt when a woman wears what she WANTS to wear? Wonder Woman's traditional outfit isn't more revealing than a simple one piece bathing suit. And yes, Wonder Woman is six feet tall. She has large breasts. She's a power fantasy, in the same way every superhero out there is a power fantasy. But she is also a role model.
When I first encountered comic books, in my early teens, I heard about DC's “Big Three.” There was Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman. I remember thinking how unlucky women were to have only this one character in the “Big Three” when men got two. All I really wanted was to see female characters kick butt — and Wonder Woman gave that to me. But what she also gave me was wisdom. Wonder Woman excels at war, but values peace above all else. She's the ambassador of Themyscira, home of the Amazons — an ambassador of peace to the world of man.
Recently, something was clarified about Wonder Woman that makes me even prouder to be her fan. Wonder Woman comic writer Greg Rucka recently confirmed that this protagonist is bisexual. It makes perfect sense — a woman living on an island of nothing but Amazons is going to end up having a romance with one eventually. It is said that Themyscira is a paradise. A paradise without love is a poor one. Being a queer woman myself, it was amazing to be able to look at this cultural icon and say — she's like me. I know that there are thousands of other women who this brought happiness to as well.
Wonder Woman is a cultural icon. She's a role model, and she is my hero. She stands for the goodness of humanity. From her invention by William Marston to her historic appearance on the front of the first issue of “Ms. Magazine” in 1972, to her 1975 television series with Lynda Carter, and hopefully to the new film, Wonder Woman has always been a feminist, a role model and a source of good.
I wonder if we could use her lasso of truth on these protestors:
What their truth would be?
Would it be that they truly don't think her worthy of the Ambassadorship?
Or would it be that they, like so many of those she's faced, are intimidated by a strong woman who wears what she wants and is not afraid to fight for what she believes in?