We saw this one coming from a mile away! The Fall/Winter issue of Vogue Hommes International starring Stephanie Seymour and Marlon Teixeir is causing quite the controversy. Not one but four advocacy groups are speaking out about the cover, which was shot by photog. Terry Richardson, alleging that it glamorizes domestic abuse. Remember the controversy that ensued from Ukraine's 12 Magazine and its Victim of Beauty spread? Well, this isn't as bad as that but nevertheless, the National Organization for Women in NY, Sanctuary for Families, Safe Horizon, and Equality Now spoke their minds in a letter to Condé Nast’s chairman, Si Newhouse and editorial director, Thomas Wallace. Read the letter below ...
Dear Mr. Wallace and Mr. Newhouse:
We write to express our profound opposition to your decision to feature a photo of Stephanie Seymour with Marlon Teixeira’s hand wrapped around her neck on the cover of Vogue Hommes International. This truly disturbing image of a woman being choked sends a dangerous message to anyone who sees this magazine – that choking is a sign of passion rather than of violence.
Choking is a huge predictor of future lethality. A 2008 Journal of Emergency Medicinestudy of murders of women in 11 cities found that 43% of women who were killed by intimate partners had experienced at least one previous episode of choking before being killed. That is why, in 2010, New York State made choking a violent felony, and advocates, prosecutors, police officers and survivors throughout the State have embraced the law as a way to save women’s lives.
In New York, your magazine appears on numerous newsstands and has enormous reach with young men and women. While this cover was perhaps intended to shock and thrill potential readers, the truly shocking fact is that it glorifies violence against women as an act of love. Choking is not a fashion statement, and certainly not something that should be used to sell magazines. We are calling on Condé Nast, as a responsible company based in New York, to pull the magazine from the newsstands immediately, and to pledge not to use violent images like this in the future.