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To think that the ITV headline 'unemployment - women suffer more than most' is outrageous

(40 Posts)
zipzap Wed 17-Aug-11 14:01:41

Was listening to the headlines being read out on ITV this lunchtime and Alistair Stewart (?) just said that in this time of increasing unemployment 'women suffer more than most'.

If he had said women who were young/old/black/blue/in the north/did badly at school/etc were more affected than most I wouldn't have minded.

Or if he said they were more affected than men I wouldn't have minded.

But to just dismiss half the population by excluding them from being included in 'most' seemed to be an indication of how many people think of men as being normal and women as being an annoying little minority.

I'm not expressing this very well sorry. I'm not usually a strident feminist but this just got my goat. Even dh needed me to explain a couple of times why I thought it was bad.

But somehow it was the very casual usage that made me despair about the entrenched views and lack of realisation as to what was wrong with what they were saying.

Or am I just overthinking this?

MadamDeathstare Wed 17-Aug-11 14:04:26

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

squeakytoy Wed 17-Aug-11 14:05:13

You are over thinking it.

The report was factual that the poor economic climate is affecting women more than it is affecting men in the job market.

InfestationofLannisters Wed 17-Aug-11 14:05:41

YANBU. Women traditionally suffer more, and the Fawcett Society have pointed out many inequalities recently, but the "most" implies that most people are men. They aren't.

AyeRobot Wed 17-Aug-11 14:07:02

Well spotted.

It's insidious, isn't it?

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 17-Aug-11 14:07:23

But squeaky, why are men 'most' then?

Unless what he meant was that more men apply for jobs than women (which is likely, given SAHMs, and carers are more likely to be female) so only say 30% of jobseekers are female and are affected more than the majority of jobseekers?

EdithWeston Wed 17-Aug-11 14:08:31

I think I agree with you.

It is irritating when the male situation is treated as the norm, and the female is excluded. They could have made the same point by saying simply that this month's rise has affected more women than men.

And it's a worrying set of figures. One month does not make a trend, it may prove to be a blip, and it is still a little early to draw firm conclusions.

But if this is replicated in the next couple of sets of figures, it will be very worrying indeed. One to watch?

redskyatnight Wed 17-Aug-11 14:09:15

Well I see what you mean (sounds like he is making women out to be a minority group rather than approx 50% of the population).

It's just sloppy use of language though. Perhaps it would have been better worded as "women suffer the most". Or maybe the report was considering groups of men/women/children/the elderly ... in which case women are a minority. IME news programmes tend to wildly overexaggerate statistical information anyway in a bid to make a point anyway. As in "horrible shock!! Over 10% of people don't know some very well known fact. So that's 90% that do then ...)

squeakytoy Wed 17-Aug-11 14:09:55

It was a simple basic statement.

"Women suffer more than most".

He could have said "women suffer more than men".

It means exactly the same thing.

LineRunner Wed 17-Aug-11 14:10:05

YANBU. It should have been stated than women have suffered 'more'.

You are right to identify ITN having an attack of male-is-normative-itis.

BooyHoo Wed 17-Aug-11 14:12:29

i agree with you.

men aren't in a notable majority (i think there are 51% males to 49% females in the world- not sure of britain though) so by saying women suffer more than most (and men being the only opposite to women) they are stating that men are the most (important).

squeakytoy Wed 17-Aug-11 14:13:59

Some of you see things that are not even there confused...

InfestationofLannisters Wed 17-Aug-11 14:16:23

Women are a majority group which has minority equality status.

I was reading another forum the other day talking about the top ten people alive today who have changed the world / our way of living and it took twenty or so posts before someone (a man) pointed out that the only woman mentioned (in two of them) was Margaret Thatcher and the dearth of women on the lists.

DH reckons that when men think about "people" they default to only considering "male people", wrongly. I thought that was interesting and scary

charitygirl Wed 17-Aug-11 14:16:31

Dont think squeaky knows what 'most' means...although Im feeling charitable so I'll suggest it was just a poor sub-editor dashing off headlines in a hurry.

BooyHoo Wed 17-Aug-11 14:17:26

"Some of you see things that are not even there " = some of you see things that i dont think are important enough to think about and it annoys me that you bring them to my attention.

charitygirl Wed 17-Aug-11 14:17:55

LOL Booyhoo!

squeakytoy Wed 17-Aug-11 14:18:05

No.. you are of course right, I dont know what "most" means hmm

Insomnia11 Wed 17-Aug-11 14:18:33

Sloppy grammar I'd say. The point is that more women than men have recently become unemployed as more women than men were employed in the public sector.

LineRunner Wed 17-Aug-11 14:19:32

It's an old game, keeping women out of the 'people' category.

There's a documentary on Discovery where an ancient historian talks of 'The Romans' and 'The Celts' trading in commodities such as wine, beer, hunting dogs and women. Straight-faced.

LolaRennt Wed 17-Aug-11 14:19:42

I think it was a bad headline because it doesn't make sense. I don't believer was a sexist element to it though. just lazy

LolaRennt Wed 17-Aug-11 14:20:20

believe there

robotlollypopman Wed 17-Aug-11 14:20:21

YABU. You seem to want to be offended. You knew what they meant. And in the workplace, I believe women ARE the minority, based on the fact that there are more men in work than women. That's what minority means.

Vicky2011 Wed 17-Aug-11 14:20:25

I think its the fact that is isn't there that is precisely the point. I'm sure there will be no deliberate anti-women bias in that sentence but it's the casual use of the word "most" to mean "men" that illustrates how people can fall into stereotypical ways of thinking without having negative intentions. It may very well have been written by a woman.

ThePosieParker Wed 17-Aug-11 14:21:26

I had to read the OP a few times before I got it.blush

InfestationofLannisters Wed 17-Aug-11 14:21:32

What a fantastic example of that Linerunner.

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