I am no longer able to conceal my contempt for feminism, I feel it has become a brittle facade and an excuse for women to avoid the real issues. As my proof I present two current events that underscore my point. The first is the Jian Ghomeshi trial currently underway in Canada and the second is feminist icon Gloria Steinem’s idiotic insult to young women (part 2). Ironically, both of these examples are brandished as reasons why we should cling to the wreckage of feminism; which it appears has devolved into polarizing complex social issues and in doing so fails to recognize any meaningful resolution. To compound the danger is the disdain for critical or independent thinking, and the expectation that as a forward thinking woman you must adopt certain opinions and must adopt feminism as your dogmatic duty. This trend robs women of the ability to form their own opinions and denies diversity, innovation and critical thinking a chance to thrive.
Jian Ghomeshi is the Canadian celebrity and former CBC host being charged with three counts of sexual assault. His defence is that he is the victim of a smear campaign and the sex was consensual; the three complainants all say that they were choked against their will and that no consent was given. In the initial police interviews all of the women pressing charges said they had not had any further contact with Ghomeshi after the assaults. However, during the court proceedings every one of them was provided with evidence they had contacted him, and all had wanted to continue their relationships with him and invited additional sex. The trial in addition to being sensationalized in the media has created an avalanche of Facebook postings politicizing this as a feminist issue. The key points being that women are being treated unfairly by both the media and the court, and raising the rather murky idea of consent.
‘Heinen (Ghomeshi’s lawyer) produced an email in court Friday that DeCoutere sent Ghomeshi on July 5, 2003, a day after the alleged assault. It read: “You kicked my ass last night and that makes me want to f— your brain out. Tonight.”’
- If the complainants had been transparent about their contact with Ghomeshi from the beginning, cross-examination in this direction wouldn’t have been necessary and their character would not have been called into question.
- If Decoutere and the 3rd complainant hadn’t exchanged over 5000 emails and text messages directly discussing the trial, Ghomeshi and the assault charges then the idea of collusion wouldn’t have had any legs.
Justice is not and shouldn’t be influenced by feminist ideology, it needs to be impartial to gender, sexuality and sexual expression. If Ghomeshi had been a woman I have no doubt that these same people would be decrying her treatment in court (if in fact it ever made it to court), accusing the male victims as having a problem with women and lauding her sexual preferences as liberated.
“Having control over who touches one’s body — and how — is at the core of [human] dignity,” the prosecution says. “And, Your Honour, that’s what this case is all about.” (CBC)
I wholeheartedly agree with the crown, this trial is about consent. Short of signing a written contract upon first meeting someone outlining what is mutual and what is not then surely an indication of consent would be returning for more. So if that is what is called into question, don’t the emails, messages and pictures indicate consent?
It appears to me that the women in this trial realized that Ghomeshi’s treatment of them was at best demeaning, at worst violent. I believe that the majority of the complainants came to this realization after the story broke in the press and after Ghomeshi’s widely distributed Facebook posting. Does this mean that Ghomeshi wasn’t or isn’t abusive? Of course not, it doesn’t mean that he is though either. I have heard numerous arguments that in continuing a relationship with Ghomeshi the women weren’t giving consent, or that it does not justify Ghomeshi’s abuse. I will counter that if Ghomeshi is an abusive jerk, it shouldn’t absolve the self-proclaimed victims of their personal accountability.
I think the real feminist issue here is why women return to abusive situations; and this will not be addressed whether Ghomeshi is found guilty or innocent. That is the dirty little secret of feminism, they don’t actually want to be responsible….
Picture used without permission: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2011/may/09/slutwalking-phenomenon-comes-to-uk