There is yet another Justin Trudeau controversy about these days that involve women and sexism. The first one, if you recall, was whether or not Justin's "striptease" event for a charity constituted a sexist practice on his part - or at least that is how several female Conservative MPs tried to spin it after their party's ad featuring the event started to backfire, despite one such MP being in attendance.
The new controversy doesn't even originate from something Justin did, but rather what he was the star of. An invitation for an event billed as Justin "unplugged" for a "ladies' night" event didn't go over so well, with its Warhol-esque pattern of JT's face and fancy curvy writing, and some fairly fluffy questions that didn't necessarily speak to the more intellectual side of people.
Its been called sexist and demeaning, showing that JT and the Liberals are treating female supporters as nothing more than people to be "talked down to." Other noteworthy people, such as NDP MP Megan Leslie, went on a weird rants about pants and driving cars and such, and how all issues are "women's issues," as if the ad just cams out of a 1890's printing press.
I don't necessarily see it, but I'm also an uncouth white male and fully admit to my ignorance of this kind of stuff. Does the ad or the event have sexist undertones? I dunno, personally I think it might just be in the eye of the beholder. The event was a great success, after all.
I do think that much of the backlash is purely political though. The event is fairly obvious a focus on allowing women - still an underrepresented demographic in this country - to air their concerns to the most popular federal political leader. As Leslie's rant correctly noted, women are concerned about a whole range of issues, and this event allowed them to show that. Its evident in the fact that we now have this new controversy about JT's China remarks. Anyone that gets hung up on the optics of the invitation is missing the point entirely at best, attempting to misdirect at worst.
Correct me if I'm wrong as well, but isn't feminism really more concerned about making real progress for women's rights and concerns in the modern world? Or did the movement really become bogged down over frivolities like this?
Maybe it depends on your political positions. Let's take Michelle Rempel's, for instance. She has focused much on the event invitation, and the Twitter backlash against her is unbelievably wretched, allowing her to push her point more. But when did Rempel stand up and say that the Harper government's position on providing safe abortions for female victims of war rape was wrong? Where is Rempel on the Conservative's lack of action on equal pay for equal work? Why hasn't she made a comment on the lack of gender parity on the Supreme Court?
Where is Michelle Rempel when women in Canada, and in the world, demand real progress be made, as Harper and co. drag their feet? She's spending her time nitpicking over a meaningless flyer with pastel colours and cursive writing. Some priorities there.
I don't buy it, neither from Rempel nor from Leslie, or any of these other politicos for that matter. It reeks of political opportunism, a chance to smear Trudeau - not real concern over the status of women in politics or the country as a whole. Its like when Palin or Bachmann say they face attacks because they're female, when you know neither of them will stand up and support women's rights in any significant way. Its just politics to them.
But maybe I'm wrong - maybe this one ad from one event that will likely not be repeated is what really matters to women. Pft.