It seems there are advertisements for pretty much anything these days, and treatments for erectile dysfunction are no different.
Virecta, a medicine that helps men maintain an erection long enough to have sex, is produced by an Egyptian pharmaceutical company and acts in the same way as Viagra. There's no doubt marketing such a product has the power to destigmatize the issue among men ... except when it's at the cost of women. The objectification of women's bodies is manifested in a number of Virecta posts on Facebook.
One Twitter user recently came across the disturbing ads and posted them in a thread on the micro-blogging platform.
"I've discovered Egyptian ads for Virecta ... and I'm never gonna be OK again"
Other than the fact that some of the advertisements focus on men's pleasure on the backdrop of women's bodies, some posts somehow conflate penis enlargement with erectile dysfunction.
Some of the adverts also seek to suggest men with "large penises" are kings, which in and of itself is problematic. It not only encourages men to believe that their penis size is a sign of power, but also diminishes a man's worth to size.
Now, the sexualization of women's bodies
To be fair, Virecta has posted a few witty adverts in the past, but their objectification of women's bodies was slowly integrated into their strategy, and honestly, they should consider sparing us the awful sighting.
In one of the adverts (see above), a spark can be seen ignited over a pack of matches that features a woman in a squatting position. The text overlay reads: "Heat her up and pamper her."
That post is considered to be one of Virecta's "less disturbing" posts. Get your cringe face on ... and scroll down.
"Fill her up"
In a caption accompanying the Facebook post, Virecta writes:
"As long as the clutch is filled up, you won't hear complaints," suggesting women will stop nagging if they are sexually satisfied. Well, sexual satisfaction is just one of many things we have the RIGHT to complain about.
But, why is a clutch being used to represent our genitals?
"Rub it well so you can turn her on"
We see what you did there ... and we're not huge fans.
"Make her a mom this coming Eid"
Ah, yes. Bring on the baby-makers since women are just that.
In case it's never been clear, if a woman does want kids, it should be a serious two-way discussion between both partners.
A phrase like "get her pregnant" completely negates the seriousness of the topic, and automatically assumes all women want to create a tiny human inside their bodies.
"Like a knife inside a cake"
Listen up, we are #NotYourAshta and #NotYourCake and not similar to anything edible. We're just human beings.
"Catch her while she's turned on"
"Find it in your hands"
A woman's hands are portrayed in this advertisement as they're touching the genie-like light oil pot, a representation of a man's genitals.
The advert suggests that with the intake of Virecta, a man's junk will magically find itself in between a woman's hands. Ummm, that's not how it works. You have to ask for consent first ... oops.
Are we [women] milk cartons now?
"So you won't have to say you have a problem"
If Virecta's aim is to empower men, then great. But, they could easily do so without sexualizing women's bodies in their adverts.
At the end of the day, our bodies don't exist to empower men and their sexuality. Just like men don't exist to empower us, women, and our sexuality. Satisfying your partner's needs sexually is one thing, but feeling empowered because of it is something else.
Why is it that such ads for men do not "incite debauchery," but if women breathe they're "indecent"?
Egypt has been hunting women down like they're witches trying to inject all of humanity with sin.
You wear a dress that is slightly revealing? Punish her.
You make a music video that is slightly sexual? Jail her. [FYI, that same video was used for one of Virecta's ads; but since it was used for men, it's OK.]
You dance wearing the same outfit all bellydancers wear? Drag her to court.
Put aside gender equality for a millisecond ... why the hypocrisy?