The United Nations has ended its campaign with Wonder Woman to promote gender equality after less than two months, bringing to a close a venture that was loudly protested from the beginning.
The UN said the character’s role at the 193-member-state organisation would end on Friday, despite earlier plans for the empowerment campaign for women and girls to run into 2017, reported NBC News on Monday. Wonder Woman is a fictional superhero appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics.
DC Entertainment, which publishes DC Comics, said it was pleased with the exposure the character brought to the UN’s global goals to achieve gender equality and empower women and girls by 2030. “Wonder Woman stands for peace, justice and equality, and for 75 years she has been a motivating force for many and will continue to be long after the conclusion of her UN honorary ambassadorship,” DC Entertainment spokesperson Courtney Simmons said.
The appointment of Wonder Woman was met with a lot of criticism. Almost 45,000 people objected to having a bustier-wearing superhero represent gender equality, and they feared she would be sending a wrong message about empowerment. They urged UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon to reconsider the decision.
“It is alarming that the United Nations would consider using a character with an overtly sexualised image at a time when the headline news in United States and the world is the objectification of women and girls,” according to the petition. “Having strong (living, breathing) female role models is a critical aspect of the goal of empowerment of women and girls,” it said.
The UN did not provide further details as to why the campaign was ending, but a spokesman, Jeffrey Brez, said campaigns using fictional characters often lasted no longer than a few months.