This week a firestorm was generated over tutus.
SELF Magazine published a photo of San Diego runner, Monika Allen, and her friend wearing tutus while running the Los Angeles Marathon in their April issue. While this in and of itself isn't firestorm-worthy, the text accompanying the photo is. Published as part of a section called the "BS Meter," where various topics that are seemingly annoying are discussed and made fun of. Underneath the photo, which is the photo used for this column, the caption read, "A racing tutu epidemic has struck NYC’S Central Park, and it’s all because people think these froufrou skirts make you run faster. Now, if you told us they made people run away from you faster, maybe we would believe it."
Monika Allen just so happens to be a brain cancer survivor and she and her friend were running the LA Marathon while Allen was receiving chemotherapy treatment for her cancer. She makes and sells the tutus to raise money for local charity Girls on the Run of San Diego, of which Allen is a coach and serves on the Board of Directors. According an interview with NBC News, Monika was contacted by the magazine asking permission to use the photo in an upcoming issue. However, she was not informed of how the photo would be used.
Since the photo has been published, there has been an outpouring of support for Monika and an equal amount of outrage for SELF Magazine. As a response, the editor of the magazine, Lucy Danziger tweeted the apology: "@glamrunner apologies from me and @selfmagazine. We applaud you for supporting girls & wish Monika speedy recovery: http://t.co/2iq4SAzWA9."
In addition, Danziger also emailed a personal apology to Monika. She tells NBC that the apology "doesn’t really address the core issue here, which is that she was misled into allowing the magazine to use her photo. She said she wouldn't have said yes to the request if she had known how it would have been represented. She said it shouldn’t matter whether or not she’s a cancer survivor. What matters is that the magazine blurb was negative and hurtful, no matter who was on the other end." Source: NBC News San Diego
Monika Allen started Glam Runner in 2011. The company hand-makes tutus to be worn in running events. The proceeds are donated to Girls on the Run of San Diego. In response to this issue, Girls on the Run is organizing a tutu run tomorrow, March 29 at Torrey Pines State Park at 8:00am to show just how tutus rock! Join the run if you're local or have your own tutu run wherever you may be. Post pictures of you in a tutu with the hashtag #tutusrock on your social media accounts.