Monday, January 23, 2017

This is what feminism looks like (Jan 21, 2017)

The nearly two million people who protested Trump's inauguration worldwide yesterday were mostly women, 500, 000 of them in the US capital here, the pink 'pussy hats' denoting pussy power and protest. That's quite some protest power alright, but sadly, it's not real power and it's too little, or even too much, too late.

I marched too, here in Auckland, with more than two thousand others, and like all the other protest marches they were organised by women and mostly attended by women to protest Trump's misogyny and the corrupt way in which the first female president of the US was denied her rightful place in history, a place that was well overdue and promised all sorts of flow-on improvements in the lives of girls and women around the world. Sexism, and racism, but mostly sexism, screwed that chance and so we feminists, tired but not defeated, protest. The battle continues.

Unfortunately, all those women (and men) - and I know a fair few personally - who did not realise in time that this was the election to fight against sexism first and for an idealistic (unrealistic) equal and free world second - because gender inequality is the oldest and most damaging inequality in the book - and supported Clinton's opponent instead, were substantially responsible for this disaster. By the time it was Clinton v. Trump, much of the anti-Clinton hate on the left of the political spectrum had already done devastating damage to her reputation and left many who wouldn't vote for Trump deciding not to vote at all, which was effectively voting for Trump. Trump was elected by less than a quarter of the US population; over 40% of Americans didn't vote.

So here we are, wearing pussy-protest caps, marching and shouting into the freezing cold or blazing heat - in all weathers across the globe - while a blatant billionaire misogynist 'predator-in-chief' rides in his warm, bullet-proof car, on his way to take the reigns of power and undo so many of the hard-won gains that feminists before us have worked for and eventually won for women.

It's depressing, deeply. But perhaps a lesson was learned in the only way that it could be learned. Let's not make the same mistake again.

No comments:

Post a Comment