This U.S. Election wasn’t about gender

‘The Project’ has received a backlash after this heated exchange between Mamamia’s Jamila Rizvi, 2GB’s Steve Price and Carrie Bickmore. This occurred in the aftermath of the U.S Election. Jamila, Carrie and former Big Brother host, Gretel Kileen were lamenting how Hillary Clinton didn’t become the first female President.

A part from agreeing with the anger of how both Rizvi and Bickmore pounced on Price, in my opinion, the U.S election WASN’T about gender! I agree with other commentators who have said that it was a backlash against the pokitical class and corruption.

That aside, this reminds me of the big hoo haa when Julia Gillard became the first female Prime Minister in Australia back in 2012. Rather than it being seen as a ‘victory’ for women, it only exposed the severe fracture in the Labor Party – a fracture that has negatively affected the party ever since.

Unfortnately, Hillary Clinton’s reputation went down the gutter. Questions over e – mails, corruption in her ‘Clinton Foundation’ and her handling of allegations of sexual assaukt aginst her husband and former President, gave her absolutely no credibility.   Like Gillard, Clinton wasa symbol of corruption and lack of integrity. Her claims of standing for women, African Americans, Latinos, Hispanics and the gay community ended up falling on deaf ears after all the allegations, including giving funds to Saudi Arabia, a kingdom well – known for publicly executing gays and also being condemned for human rights abuses against women.

 

This election was a revolt against corruptionand what wasn’t working. It was a revolt against people who felt like they were being cornered. It was about people who were sick of not being heard when they raised concerns. This was a backlash against the overt – PC culture that has flooded the U.S. (and has come here to a lesser extent). People want to be heard! They want their voices back! This is, I believe the reason why Trump won. I can understand why it might make people uncomfortable. People have expressed fears about what might happen. I’ve expressed my own fears, especially on the issue of LGBT rights and anti – discrimination legislation. I sincerely hope that Americans don’t face a back pedal from the steps torward that have been taken. It still doesn’t change my view that Clinton didn’t lose because she is a woman. She lost because people found the voice to oppose the political narrative that the voters thought had gone on for too long.

 

 

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Sexual Harassment Made Simple

Just a quick post about a discussion that just won’t die – sexual harassment in the workplace. How about we make it really simple.

If someone (ofvany gender), is working, let them do their job

If it’s an appropriate context and you wantvto flirt, if the other person is comfortable and even flirting back_ hey go nuts! If the other person is uncomfortable and/ or embarrassed STOP!

If the person tells you verbally that they don’t like what you’re doing STOP!

If you are in a person’s personal soace  making the other person uncomfortable BACK OFF!

If you ask someone out and they decline, take them at their word and respect their wishes.

It all bpils down to respect. Is that soooo hard?

Sex Workers

It’s been 25 years since the movie “Pretty Woman” came out, starring Julia Roberts. The anniversary has sparked conversation and debate among feminists on how the movie portrays sex work.

Women’s site, Mamamia has portrayed both sides of the debate; one decrying the victim status often given to sex workers and one telling of the brutality of it (sorry, can’t post either at the moment… really hate that!).

Last night, “The Project” did a story also portraying contrasting experiences by women who are, or had been in the sex industry. So, what should people make of it?

I think there is validity in the argument that we should separate sex trafficking and forced prostitution to women who make a choice to get involved in sex work. I don’t think doing things like outlawing prostitution will really work. I think there’ll always be loopholes that could always be passed through. From a completely legal point of view (not moral), I think it’ll be somewhat better to have it legal and regulated.

Will that make the situation 100% safe? No. Prostitution has been legal in Holland since the early 2000’s (2001, i think) and they still have an issue with trafficking, particularly from Russia and Eastern Europe.

There is one more thing I think needs to happen. I think some young women get into prostitution to get some “quick” money, usually for study or tuition fees. I think this is something that needs to be looked at by the Government. Why do young women feel like they need to turn to sex work for money? Does there need to be more help for fees? Does there need to be more work for young people to choose? Let’s be clear: I’m not talking about women who actively choose to be sex workers. I’m talking about women who feel compelled to do sex work because of a lack of a cashflow. For some reason, it doesn’t seem right.

 

How should women, particularly self – claimed “feminist” view sex work? If it’s a genuine choice, then it’s their choice. However, I think there is something to be said about it when young women feel like they need to get into prostitution as a last resort to make money, whether to fund their current lifestyles or, more seriously, a drug addiction. It’s these women, I believe, should be guided to another path and get the help that they need.

Mia Freedman

638406-mia-freedmanMia Freedman is probably one of the most outspoken and divisive media personalities in Australlia. Born in 1971 to South African migrant parents, Freedman pursued a journalism career at Australian Cosmopolitan aged 19. In 1996, she became one of the youngest editors to ever work at the magazine at only 24. After a short stint at Channel Nine, Freedman launched her site Mamamia in 2007. which receives about 2 million views weekly.

She hasn’t been free from controversy and public backlash. Last year, she caused outrage on “The Project” for saying:

We accept that gay people can’t change who they love and who they’re sexually attracted to, so why do we think that people who are sexually attracted to children can be rehabilitated?

This comment, whilst the panel on ‘The Project” (and Steve Price from 2GB by polycom) was discussing whether sex offenders registers should be made public knowledge. This comment caused a huge outcry, especially on Twitter. Anyone who looks at her website for more than ten seconds would know that the comment was a clumsy statement and that she is NOT homophobic.

Earlier that year, Freedman was sent death threats on Twitter after she slammed “Sunrise’s” David Koch for saying that co – host Samantha Armytage had “stripper shoes”. Freedman took that as a sexist comment, however, had both Armytage and Koch slamming her alarmism.

On her website, where she discusses women’s issues, politics, pop culture and other topics, there is plenty of fierce debate and criticism in the comments (although not all the posts are by her). She (and the other bloggers on the site), are strongly to the Left poltically and as such, some of the posts they make are sometimes deemed unfair or that the reporting is too biased. Frankly, in some cases, I can see where some of her critics come from, sometimes, However, one’s got to admire her passion and that she’s willing to stand for what she believes in and doesn’t buckle under pressure.

In many aspects, I think Freedman is a very admirable role model, for writers and non – writers alike. She stands up for what she believes in, she seems to have bounced back from all the criticism and her site, nearly eight years on, still gets much traffic (so many of her posts have an unbelievable amount of comments!). She also causes discussion and, i think, makes people at least think of where they stand on a number of issues, whether they agree with her and her staff or not. For that, I for one, commend her.

Did you read Cosmo when she was Editor? Do you read her blog? What do you think about her? (please keep comments civil and polite).