This Was Sexual Assault

Blogger slams classic 'Life' magazine photo

By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff

Posted Oct 7, 2012 4:01 PM CDT
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(Newser) – The iconic kiss that symbolized America's victory in World War II? It was nothing less than sexual assault, according to a British blogger who notes that Greta Zimmer Friedman—the kissee in the classic Life photo—was grabbed and kissed against her will, reports the Daily Mail. "If there is a better symbol for how messed up our ideas about sex and romance are, I can’t think of one," writes Leopard on Crates and Ribbons.

Indeed, the man who planted that kiss—George Mendonsa—was on a date with his future wife when the war ended, he popped a few drinks, and spontaneously took hold of Friedman. "I wasn’t kissing him," she later said. "He was kissing me." Leopard lays it on the line: "It seems pretty clear, then, that what George had committed was sexual assault. Yet, in an amazing feat of willful blindness, none of the articles comment on this, even as they reproduce Greta’s words for us." Click for Leopard's full blog.

The legendary Life magazine photo. Was it sexual assault?
The legendary Life magazine photo. Was it sexual assault?   (Wikimedia Commons)
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