Amanda Marcotte compares Mike Huckabee’s inane comments about Jay-Z and Beyonce, which he continues to defend, to his constant support for the Duggars. She eloquently points out that it is the Duggars, not Jay-Z and Beyonce, who turn women into sex objects alone.
If you want to talk about someone who objectifies his wife, it sure as shit isn’t Jay-Z, who treats his wife as a professional and a colleague and his equal. It’s Jim Bob Dugger, who treats his wife like an object put on earth to make babies for him. That is what “objectification” means: Reducing someone to an object and denying them agency or having value outside of how you can use them. I realize people use it to mean “thinks someone is sexy”, but those people are wrong. Sex is a good thing and thinking your spouse is sexy is key to a healthy marriage.
No, objectification is about reducing someone to an object. And thus, few celebrities are more objectified than Michelle Duggar, who belongs to a religious cult that teaches that women should have no agency whatsoever when it comes to how their body is used, because they are objects to be owned and controlled by their husbands. They are not allowed to decide when to have sex or when to have children. Only the man who currently controls them is allowed to make that decision. Their father owns them until marriage, denying them the autonomy to decide to have sex if they want. After marriage, their husbands own them, and the decision of when to have sex is solely the husband’s. They don’t hide this, openly explaining that a woman is obliged to have sex whenever the husband wants it, regardless of how she feels, because—being an object—her feelings don’t matter. Since they are not allowed to use birth control, this also means they get pregnant not when they want to, but strictly according to what the husband wants. Their bodies do not belong to them. They are objects to be used by men. Sort of sex-and-breeding appliances, if you will.
That’s what objectification looks like.