So Twitter and Facebook are having a complete meltdown over this article from Sunrise’s Natalie Barr (there you go Daily Telegraph – another few clicks for you).
And you know what? Three or four years ago I could have and would have written the exact same piece.
Like Nat, I can’t think of a single time I’ve ever experienced discrimination because of my gender. Certainly never in the workplace. And for many, many years I found the whole debate boring. Like Nat, I thought women just needed to get on with things.
‘Stop hating on men!’
‘See, this is why I get on better with guys than girls’ I thought.
I’ve since changed my tune.
I now know that just because I’ve never experienced discrimination or felt marginalised, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen.
I now know that without the casual sexism so ubiquitous in our society, the more overt types of sexism would struggle to exist.
I now know that when I am being ‘one of the boys’ – laughing at sexist jokes and telling people to get a sense of humour – I’m part of a pretty big problem.
I now know that feminism is nothing to do with hating men and everything to do with wanting equality.
I also know that men are not the enemy but whether we realise it or not, we live in a highly patriarchal society and this needs to change.
I know all of this because people I respect have listened to my thoughts, respected my thoughts … and then presented their alternate views. These people have educated me about feminism, sexism and discrimination.
Nat Barr started a conversation yesterday.
There are a huge amount of people out there who vehemently disagree with her. And they are delivering their disagreement in typical fashion – biting, sarcastic and patronising.
Good for retweets and shares on Facebook? Sure.
Adding anything useful to the conversation?
And are they doing anything to change the thinking of those who DO agree with Nat and are applauding her for writing the piece.
The answer to that is ‘no’ too.