As we look back on the life of Hugh Hefner, I hear revisionist rumblings of how he was a “crusader” for the sexual revolution. Really? Sex doesn’t need a crusader. In case you haven’t noticed, there’s almost seven billion people in the world. Sex is doing just fine.
Hugh Hefner wasn’t a visionary. He was a creep.
The early days of Playboy had great interviews and interesting cartoons, but that’s not why you bought the magazine. The objectification of women as “things,” whose only value was to be viewed or have meaningless sex with wasn’t invented by Hefner, but he made millions off propagating that message. And had the balls to say it was “for” women.
The Playboy legacy is replete with stories of playmates being pimped out, a newer, yet just as disgusting version of the “casting couch.” Hollywood legends came to Hefner’s parties and left with human souvenirs, all young women under his disgusting tutelage. Before the internet, before cable TV, underage sex, date rape, and other sexual assault was easily brushed away, especially if the woman was dressed provocatively. Does it surprise you that Bill Cosby was a regular at the Playboy mansion?
The idea that Hugh Hefner ushered in the “sexual revolution” is an obscenity that implies women’s roles in America were somehow elevated by the Playboy model. To the contrary. Hefner denigrated an entire culture. Young girls were brainwashed into believing that the ticket to their dreams wasn’t their brains, but their bodies, inside a magazine with a staple in their navel.