• Fri, Jan 13 2012

Poll: Does The Word ‘Tramp’ Offend You?

Last week during a post about potential new girlfriends for Johnny Depp, I happened to refer to Blake Lively as a tramp. Some people did not care for this one bit.

Although the comments on the post weren’t anything to cry over, I did however get some nasty Tweets in which I was called sexist, a cunt (which really deflates their argument of me being sexist) and my most favorite of all: “Blake Lively is a tramp? u should be erased frm the world. Disgusting. That’s the word to describe u.” You gotta love someone who tries to “school” you while using “u” in place of “you.”

According to Merriam-Webster, a tramp is– a: vagrant; b: a foot traveler; c: a woman of loose morals; specifically: prostitute.

Of course, I was in no way suggesting that Blake Lively is a prostitute, because I do not know if she makes money in exchange for sex. Nor would I shame her for it, if she was. But I do think she comes off as a woman who, to quote Merriam-Webster, appears to have loose morals. I do not think this is a bad thing. Again, I’m not shaming her for this, because I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it.

By definition, I’m a tramp. If you wanted to take it a step further, I could probably be considered a slut in some circles. Personally, I do not find either one of these terms degrading or rude or even sexist because I truly embrace my sexuality. I own and take responsibility for my behavior, and more to the point, I love sex and will do it whenever and with whomever I please.

While I would never say I’d take the comment “tramp” as a compliment, it’s simply because I wouldn’t take “short” or “brunette” as compliments either. These are just adjectives that are factual and describe me. I’m a short, trampy brunette–end of story.

Sorry! This poll is now closed.

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  • christoffer delsinger

    the word tramp titillates me. I also find blake lively to be the most exquisite of hussies.

    • Hanna Brooks Olsen

      Like.

    • Amanda Chatel

      Yeah, this one has a way with words… #tramps4eva

  • Cee

    I don’t know. I think its kind of odd how women hang onto one word with so much pride and get offended by another. Like when they call each other bitches or sluts (ZOMG, Im a slutty ballerina for Halloween..partay bitches!) amongst themselves but then when someone else uses it god forbid. It cant go both ways.

    I use all the words, including cunt…when you are one, you are one.

    • Cee

      Also, when you mean to insult, you mean to insult..it doesn’t matter what word you use. You don’t have to use curse words to convey that you think, in this case, that Blake Lively is easy, gets around, sleeps with a lot of men…so on. Same goes when you call someone is a bitch…they are hideously unpleasant, must be on their period all the time so on an so forth.

      I think women give that woman more power to the word than anything. My friend called me a cunt once when he felt me unpleasant. I laughed at him (cunt like behavior?). He never used it when he realized that I just found it amusing instead of hurtful.

  • Jenn

    Would you have called her a slut? If not, then don’t call her a tramp. It’s basically the same thing. If you decide that “slut” is too inflammatory a word to use, regardless of whether or not you personally consider it an insult, then “tramp” should be treated the same. The problem isn’t really what tramp means, but what it means to you and that you didn’t intend it as an insult (right?). It is, however, commonly used as an insult, and it’s not unreasonable that people interpreted it in that way and were offended. If you never want to offend people, don’t describe someone by your perception of their morals or sexuality.

  • Goldie

    I’m not one of the outraged at your first post (didn’t see it until just now), but I think your explanation is problematic. I mean, you’ve clarified your intent. Okay. I get that a lot of women are trying to reappropriate words like bitch, slut, tramp, etc. by using them in a positive or unashamed way. And I do think these words are okay in certain contexts. However…

    “Of course, I was in no way suggesting that Blake Lively is a prostitute…” You say this as if it’s a given, but I don’t think anyone could draw from that one sentence that you actually think that a tramp is not equal to a prostitute (as if it has to be THAT literal to offend) and you don’t think sleeping around is a big deal.

    Also, the very definition of the word slut shames. You’ve actually spelled out the definition here and ignored that the very problem with it is that it conflates loose morals with sex. If you say– “it’s okay with me that she’s got loose morals” you’re implicitly buying into the idea that having more than one sex partner is wrong.

    Also, “Personally, I do not find either one of these terms degrading or rude or even sexist because I truly embrace my sexuality” is a little condescending. Just because somebody does find those terms rude doesn’t mean they haven’t fully embraced their sexuality. And just because you don’t find them offensive doesn’t mean you should be surprised when someone else does.

    I read this site regularly enough to give any Gloss blogger the benefit of the doubt on slut-shaming. But I don’t think there was enough in that article to make it clear how you felt about any of this and I can see how somebody stumbling on the article would take offense.

    • Kj

      This this this!!

      Especially, I don’t find it offensive, so you shouldn’t either!

    • Jamie

      like.
      i see how goldie could give the gloss the benefit of the doubt re: slut-shaming. however, while i see her point and do think the intent of the use of “tramp” was meant to be funny and lighthearded, i still think it is contradictory that the word “tramp” was given a greenlight on this site. tramp is essentially a synonym for “slut” but i somehow don’t think you would have called Blake Lively a slut and then defended that word choice.

  • Somma

    Actually this offends because from what you have written you have just called a girl a name, said she might have loose morals without any proof whatsover, nor have I seen anything in the papers to indicate. That this hordes of men that she sleeps with that justify the Tramp tag. She actually from what I see is in relationships, linked to men far less than her peers in Hollywood, but you call her a derogatory name. Why? It’s a sad move from you. I prefer facts not “appears” so I will be silly and call someone I don’t know every name under the sun.

    Quite frankly why women degrade themselves and act this way towards other women is a mystery to me. I don’t call anyother woman names, especially someone I don’t know and I know enough not to assume from appearances, so yeah I’m with those who took exception to you refering to her a tramp for no reason, other than she “appears”. Jeez.

  • MR

    How about we turn the word upside-down. The definition is definately sexist. Loose morals should be applied universally to both female and male. I was definately a tramp in my mid teens, early twenties and late twenties, again and only did relationship based sex in between, and then after. Seems like you shouldn’t use the word to describe someone’s nature, since it might only be a transitional state.

  • Meghan

    The word tramp is sexist because it’s only specific to a “woman of loose morals”. To try and simplify it as much as possible, the same term doesn’t apply to men. Saying being a “tramp” or “slut” is a part of someone’s identity is incredibly misogynistic. How do you define what good morals are? For most of our patriarchal society, any single woman that isn’t a pure, virginal flower is of loose morals. We don’t put the same expectations on men. This word will always be offensive, because a woman’s sex life shouldn’t matter. And I feel bad for someone who claims being a tramp as part of their sexual identity. That shows a lack of confidence and comfort in your sexuality, to me.