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How to reply to this?

(21 Posts)
CaptainWarbeck Sat 02-Apr-16 23:43:05

This post (picture below) is being shared in my Facebook feed and receiving lots of likes. It makes me feel uncomfortable although I can't put my finger on why or explain what exactly I find wrong with it. Thoughts anyone?

Trills Sat 02-Apr-16 23:51:29

Those who are the victims of larger crimes of misogyny do not benefit by you declining to draw attention to the smaller aggressions that happen every day.

OnlyTheStones Sat 02-Apr-16 23:51:31

I think the problem with this is it seems to suggest that anything less severe than being murdered or subjected to acid attacks is not worth discussing. We must not complain about the sexism we experience because at least we are allowed to go to school.

Trills Sat 02-Apr-16 23:55:14

If the person posting this is an author with some pull with the editors, she could say
"I will write the article you want, if you also publish this article on other problems in the world"

If she does not, then the world may benefit from her writing the best article she can on this issue (perhaps also referencing the other problems) rather than having the article written by someone who is less skilled.

The only situation in which the world is a better place by her declining to write the article, is if
a - it's not a topic worth writing about at all (I disagree)
b - she's a rubbish writer and feminism would be better served by a better writer writing the article instead (I have no opinion on this, not knowing the author)

CaptainWarbeck Sun 03-Apr-16 00:48:15

Thanks that helps to clarify it in my mind. I think stones has hit the nail on the head for me.

houseeveryweekend Sun 03-Apr-16 01:20:47

Yeah it makes me feel uncomfortable too... its one of those 'well you don't have it as bad as someone else so you should shut up' posts... I class it in the same group as 'you have enough rights now surely?' or 'overempowered'....... you see that's come up on spell check BECAUSE ITS NOT ACTUALLY A REAL WORD sadly some people think it is a real word. I mean really if someone robbed your house would you just go 'oh well at least I have a house some people are homeless' or would you go to the police and try and get something done about it? I seriously don't believe all the people who post all this nonsense about the 'whining' of western women would actually fail to complain about any aspect of their lives because someone else somewhere else has it worse... its just that they expect you not to complain if its anything to do with gender.. because women should shut up basically.

PalmerViolet Sun 03-Apr-16 07:40:32

Reads like the kind of man who enjoys derailing feminist's discussions with whataboutery. Or the kind of woman who's had such a little, safe life that unless they've personally experienced something, contends it's never happened to anyone else, and feels honour bound to make themselves look like an arse by suggesting that feminists must be lying about it. There's a lot of it about.

I agree, the article she posits would be interesting, but probably not best written by her.

sausageeggbacon111 Sun 03-Apr-16 07:41:00

I am going to put a view here. It depends who the piece is intended for? Yes there are problems in the 1st world but so long as we can ignore what is going on in the third world and still claim to be a card carrying feminist it makes our life easier. How many people here are involved in groups that are campaigning or raising real awareness about these problems? Most are going "woe is me my barrista dared to tell me to smile". Or someone at Uni is using scary words and I want a safe space against words. I was brought up in a generation where we were told sticks and stones regularly which may be why I can be a heartless person.

Seriously though if people were involved in groups campaigning about these bigger things I would be more sympathetic. But the excuse I gave £3 is so simple but how much or that money could be used more directly for schools say if charities didn't have to pay so many people because volunteers are doing things. When people stop making excuses that mean they are only interested in the problems that affect them I will view them with a more understanding point of view.

Theydontknowweknowtheyknow Sun 03-Apr-16 09:42:48

I think the small things show how woven such ideas are into the fabric of our world.

And it's all coming from the same place. The sheikh thinking that women can't cook and be intellectual at the same time may be more benign but it ultimately comes from the same mode of thinking that restricts girls' lives into purely domestic roles and shoots them in the head when they seek to break out of those roles.

They're just less severe manifestations of the same attitude and when you challenge the attitude you go to the very heart of the matter.

Besides the journalist is actually complaining about those small things. She's just couching them in a "I'm not complaining about the small stuff because the bigger stuff exists" argument which cleverly bypasses the whatabouttery response.

Anniegetyourgun Sun 03-Apr-16 09:51:03

Why couldn't she have written the article with a paragraph in there about "I know I am lucky not to suffer x, y, z but ..." That would have fulfilled the remit and got a bit of attention for the wider issues as well. As it is, she's effectively displaying solidarity with all the women and girls who suffer in the world by not doing anything hmm

Anniegetyourgun Sun 03-Apr-16 09:53:23

... oh, I see what you mean, Theydontknow, but she didn't actually write the article, did she? She did get some publicity for the issue through FB, though, to be fair.

oliviaclottedcream Sun 03-Apr-16 10:44:50

Women are violently oppressed in some parts of the world, In parts of Africa, Egypt, Iran, Saudi, parts of Asia. These are the issues that need urgent attention. The more the better...

tribpot Sun 03-Apr-16 10:50:50

It implies that sexism doesn't happen here, particularly religion-based sexism. This isn't true. You don't have to look as far as Asia and Africa to find women dying as a result of laws made by men.

However, that aside, the fact that we are (mostly) not dying doesn't mean our experiences shouldn't be written about - if anything the main problem we face here is complacency and denial. Because we are 'allowed' to have our own bank accounts and drive our own cars (and be Prime Minister) the war on sexism is won and everything is fine. Any measurable inequality that remains (e.g. the gender pay gap) is entirely down to women's free choices in our equal society.

Siolence Sun 03-Apr-16 10:55:26

Violent oppression is supported by endless cultural behaviours that women are less.

We don't condone racist speech while attacking racial violence because we understand that there is a link.

How is systematic sexist behaviour any different? It has to be called out and stopped.

OnlyTheStones Sun 03-Apr-16 12:27:30

The post in the OP reminds me of something I saw a few days ago but can't find it now to link to it, so will summarise it instead.

A woman in a city in India was complaining about some of the discrimination she faced - being harassed, not feeling safe when out alone etc. She was told "at least you don't live in the countryside, if you did you would have been married off at 12, compared to them you are lucky". But the girls who are made to marry at 12 are also told they are lucky if they complain because "at least he doesn't beat you".

The message is that as a woman you may only complain about the way you are treated if you can prove that nobody on the world has it worse than you do.

oliviaclottedcream Mon 04-Apr-16 09:08:05

Of course some sexism and chauvinism happens here in the Uk!!!.... But the situation in some 3rd world countries where women are subjected to imprisonment, stoning, lashing, sexual assault, FGM, being ostracised, and shot through the head for lobbying for girls education, ought to prioritise our attention far more than, threads such as - "my boss married a 17 year old many years ago, this makes me uncomfortable, please come and stroke my hair for me and tell me it'll be alright!" . As well as dissecting conspiracy theories about "The Patriarchy on the molecular level.

buckingfrolicks Mon 04-Apr-16 18:36:45

I was enjoying this thread before I got to Olivia. What a rancid view of feminism you have.

FreshwaterSelkie Mon 04-Apr-16 18:49:39

That excerpt in the OP could describe pretty much any thread on the feminism board at the moment! a thread hasn't arrived until someone who patently has no interest in feminist thought comes in and decrees that either a) the topic at hand is irrelevant, because there's actual real oppression out there, and why don't we care about that? or b) we are overthinking it and c) if only feminists weren't obsessed with moaning about women being victims, we'd get SO much further hmm

PalmerViolet Mon 04-Apr-16 19:04:30

As amply demonstrated on this thread, Fresh.

tribpot Mon 04-Apr-16 19:14:21

I assume there is a desire to characterise sexism solely in forms of behaviour that sexists in this country don't typically exhibit, e.g. shooting people in the head for wanting to go to school, stoning, FGM. Much as I'm sure racists in this country during the apartheid era would say 'what more do they want, they can vote, can't they?'.

VestalVirgin Wed 06-Apr-16 22:40:06

I assume there is a desire to characterise sexism solely in forms of behaviour that sexists in this country don't typically exhibit,

So true.
I once knew a man who tried to use the sexist behaviour of other men to convince me he was not a sexist asshole. Thereby proving that he was, indeed, a very sexist asshole.

Took me some time to realize that his acknowledgement that women in, say, Afghanistan had it bad was not proof that he was an okay dude, but that he was just using it to justify his own sexism.

One very important point about "But the women in India ..." is that we cannot change what happens in other countries (other than by starting a war, which is considered rather rude nowadays, and I don't think a feminist party could get the majority of votes by promising to wage war on misogynist countries).

We can, however, change what happens in our own countries.

Sexists know that, and they don't want anything to change, so they like to draw attention to the sexism that happens somewhere else.

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