The good man paradox

Not all men are wankers but enough of them are, to come out in force and say that they’re not all wankers, whenever you point to the actions of any given wanker, or group of wankers.  As if this is relevant.  As if I’m supposed to care that some bloke in Cardiff raises his three kids because their mother abandoned them.

As if that, somehow, negates the crisis in family courts, where violent men gain access to kids and violent male sexual predators gain custody of kids.  Or the crisis in rape prosecutions, where less than 2% of rapists (men) are convicted for their crimes.  As if that will save the life of either of the women killed by their male partners this week in Britain.

It should be self evident that anecdotal examples of compassion, or even simply  of taking responsibility – I’m talking to you, doting Dad from Cardiff – have no real place in a conversation about the epidemic of male violence that’s never gone away.  And yet, it’s such a common ploy among the defensive, that it has its own acronym – NAMALT.

In the week since the British rape victim returned from Cyprus, the internet has been awash with rapists, rape apologists and rape enthusiasts.  Any rape that makes headlines becomes a catalyst for all that is dark and damaged and depraved and downright dangerous about online mankind to surface.  Keyboard warriors across the globe celebrate her conviction because it makes them feel better about their own, unsanctioned crimes.

‘I was accused of rape once.’  They say.  Only once?

‘THE LYING WHORE SHOULD BE LOCKED UP!’  They shout.

‘It’s women like her that make it harder for real victims to get justice’  They proclaim, but never qualify how.

And as awful as these rants are, they somehow make sense.  In a world where one in five women are sexually assaulted, there’s got to be a lot of rapists, and most of them will be able to type.  A case that highlights the brutality of rape, the corruption of police investigations, the incompetence of legal systems, and the complicity of political systems  is a case with a lot to prove.  Rapists have a lot to defend.

What never makes sense to me is those who do believe her, but still want you to know that not all men are like a group of Israeli rapists.

‘It is important,’ they tweet, ‘that you remember there is good men in the world.’

Why is that important?  In what way does that empower the victim of a savage gang rape and an international miscarriage of justice?  In a world where men do most of the killing and raping and maiming, I can see how it’s comforting to know that your Barry puts the tea on the table four nights a week and always picks the girls up from ballet.  I just don’t see why it’s important.

The existence of good men is not what we question when groups of men conspire to deny a rape victim justice, but the persistence of bad men.  Not all men are gang rapists of teenage tourists, but gang rape is an exclusively male crime.  If we can’t call a spade a spade, for fear of hurting the good man’s ego, or the happy wife’s happy life, then perhaps these people are neither as good nor as content, as they contend.

Not all writers think like me.  If you like this you will also like my debut novel Nailing Jess.

Gaslit

I’m really angry this morning and I don’t want to be, this close to Christmas. I want to ice gingerbread men and mull wine and wrap presents in sustainable wrapping products and I can do none of the above because I’m so fucking angry.

Yesterday Maya Forstater lost her case at an employment tribunal. Her witness statement outlining her beliefs can be read here. In a nutshell, Mia was fired for believing that one’s biological sex is a material reality.  This, a judge held was a not a belief protected by The Equality Act 2010.

I urge you to pause and consider the implications of this judgement. I ask you to get your head around the fact that a belief in a self evident material reality is not protected, that a woman got fired for knowing what everybody knows – Biological reality exists.

Does it make you feel a bit crazy?  ‘Coz it’s sort of driving me nuts.  No-where in my mind can I accommodate an alternative belief.  Sure, I know they exist, but a lot of bat shit crazy ideas about the nature of womanhood exist, and I’m adept at ignoring most of them. Why do I have to capitulate to this one? More importantly, why would I, when it is devastating to women as a sex class, and intellectually lacking any discernible weight?

‘Gender is a spectrum’ is the latest apple they’re shoving down our throats. ‘Course it’s a spectrum, because not all women wear pink all the time, and some men cry at romantic movies marketed to the crying gender. Saying gender is a spectrum is a core message of feminists, forever. We created it to climb out of the home-maker box and the baby maker box and the sex maker box we’d been coarsely shoved into, a few thousand years before.

So far we are all in agreement. At one point do we start to diverge?

‘Gender is a spectrum therefore I am (… insert random made up word) to subdivide the already two distinct sex classes into a mosh pitt of meaningless sub categories that serve one clear aim – To eradicate women as a sex class.

This is the part of the game that separates the women from the girls, literally and metaphysically.

To be clear, I have nothing against metaphysics and have been a willing participant in many a conversation so pretentious and outlandish that it disappeared up its own anus, but co-existing with metaphysics is material reality. I thought all good philosophers knew this. Certainly, all ex mental patients do.

There is what is in our heads.

There is what is before our eyes.

Before my eyes there are two distinct biological sexes. My senses converge to reaffirm that position.  It’s not simply what I see, it’s what I smell, it’s what I taste, it’s what I touch, it’s what I perceive.  It’s coded into my brain and hardwired into my instinct.

I think if you put me in a room that played a twenty four hour loop of the mantra ‘Transwomen are women’, you still couldn’t change my mind.

Folks, you may have to shoot me, or at the very least fire me.  #istandwithmaya

Looking for a last minute Christmas gift, why not radicalise a loved one with a copy of my debut novel Nailing Jess?

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t they know it’s Christmas?

Shout out to the homeless kid outside the entrance to Superdrug on Nicolson Street, even though she ruined my day.  Cracked straight through my prism of fairy lights and scented candles with her holey boots and her dirty shawl.  All I wanted to do was fill my basket with stuff, go the counter and pay for it, take it home,  decant it, wrap it and write on it, and put it back in a different, fancier bag.

There’s nineteen shopping days left ’till ground zero.  Nineteen!  I can’t afford to get distracted by a homeless child sitting on a cardboard box in the pissing rain and the freezing cold that is an Edinburgh winter.

Maybe she’s not a child.  She could be a young looking eighteen, or a really young looking twenty one.

Browsing the hair dye aisle I concede she’s certainly young enough not to need to dye her roots.  In any event, it’s probably not a priority for her.  Where do the homeless dye their hair and wax their eyebrows?  Where do the go to dip their feet in soaking hot water after a long day or night of Edinburgh Winter?  Still, she’s young, this homeless child, so she probably has sturdy feet.

Sizing up the beautiful body, beautiful soul section in search of bath bombs.  I need four. Found them!  But they’re part of a buy two get one free offer.  I feel my head spinning.  Do I buy four, thereby getting one free?  Do I buy six?  And get two for nought.  But then I’ll have two I don’t need.  Can’t stand it when they mess with my mind like this.

What’s her mind like?  This homeless girl.  What does she think as she sits outside a beauty chain in the centre of one of the world’s most affluent cities and begs strangers for change?  Maybe she hasn’t been doing it long?  Maybe it’s a part-time thing?  Maybe it’s a lifestyle choice?  It would help if she had one of those hand-written card-board messages with some basic details explaining that she was not now, nor never had been, addicted to alcohol or drugs, and that she was, perhaps, an army vet, or made homeless because her Mum died.

I glance at my list and see there’s nail varnish in this season’s must have colour.  Puce. Where the hell do they keep their nail varnish?  Where the hell’s her Mother?  Does she even know?  I’d want to know if my son was begging on the streets of the city voted best  city to live in in the U.K., by a royal mail study published in 2018.  I wonder did she fill out that survey?  Is she literate?  Is English a second language?  That might explain the absence of a cardboard box biography.

Fuck this shopping lark! I abandon my basket and head for the nearest exit, which is also the entrance, where she still sits begging.

Damn these homeless children sitting on damp steps outside high street chemists on freezing cold days in the build up to Christmas.  Can the council not do anything about them?  Like they do with the drunks in the Grass-market in the run up to the fringe?

Losing My Religion…

I’m not much of a believer but I do believe in the sanctity of single sex spaces. Based on my own experience, there are times in some women’s lives, and moments in all women’s lives, where they must be with other women, and only women.

I know men find this threatening.

It’s ironic, given that safety is the primary reason why women choose to congregate alone or seek out a provider of single sex services. When we’ve been attacked in our own homes, for example, and we have to flee, we want to flee to a space where there are no other men. Even though there are good men, who have never hurt us, we don’t care. We want a ‘No Man Zone’ to recover from the damage of the last man.

And the law gets it. Or it used to.

There was always those disgruntled about single sex spaces and women meeting without the men. Mostly men. This is understandable when we consider that men have been in charge of everything, forever, and are used to going anywhere they want, anytime they want, unrestricted.

But such men were out of touch with a changing world. Men’s Right’s Activists – MRAS, seeking to repeal rape laws and revoke women’s rights outside the home, never really took off…with women.

Just like you can’t convince a turkey to vote for Christmas, MRAS couldn’t get large numbers of women to campaign for polices that would see them disadvantaged.

What to do?

As the MRAS couldn’t change their demands, the only option available to them was to change their request. And the world’s most successful advertising campaign was born.

Enter stage left – Transgenderism.

Transgenderism is the belief in a gendered soul. It is the whacky, off the wall idea that people can be born in the wrong bodies, and therefore need surgery and life long medication to align with their true selves.

Except when they don’t.

Sometimes the condition is severe and requires medical intervention. This seems to be particularly true of young women, who move from binders to double mastectomy to infertility, before they have time to mature and consider the enormous ramifications of choices they are not old enough to make. Other times, the condition needs no medical intervention and can be alleviated with a marks and spencers bra and a pound shop lip-stick. This seems especially true of middle aged and older men, who seek to be perceived and legally recognised as women, but don’t want to be castrated for the cause.

What has any of this to do with Women’s Rights?

There’s been batshit crazy religions – suggesting women are sub-ordinate to men- in existence, forever. Spare Rib, anyone?

Why has this one, suggesting that the noun ‘woman’ isn’t a materially valid description of a type of human being, namely ‘women’,  gained such mainstream appeal? Other than the fact that it’s profoundly woman hating, and woman hating never went out of style.

It is because there is no separation of church and state on this issue. It is because the left, famous for their atheist approach to politics, has fallen into a black hole called trans ideology where new age buzz words meet biblical belief systems.  They never figured out it was a religion because it was posed as ignorant to even ask.

And here we are, with a kooky set of beliefs being sold as absolute truths to a gullible Western audience, made dim by authoritarian artists and ill informed celebrities, and politicians who will not do their jobs, for fear of criticism from a religion that does not bear scrutiny, which is why the logo ‘No Debate’ is No Accident.

 

 

 

Some Feminist Thoughts on Policing Pronoun Piss Taking

Are you one of those women taking the piss out of Sam Smith’s pronouns?  If you are, you should know that it’s not just Sam Smith’s pro-nouns you’re taking the piss out of, but all the Sam Smiths. Sam Smith, in this context, means all the closeted and non closeted non binaries he represents, not everybody in the universe with the first name Sam and the last name Smith, which would probably cover a lot of non non binary types of both sexes, who are unlikely to take offence at satire and political commentary directed at non binary types and the identity politics their views embody.

If you are one of those women taking the piss out of Sam Smith’s pronouns – Have you asked yourself why? All Sam Smith is asking, very politely, is that you try and remember that he is now a they? How hard is that to do?

Sam Smith perceives himself as neither man nor woman, existing instead in the increasingly blurred lines between those two nouns. All Sam Smith wants is for society to acknowledge the blur, and the new nouns that have emerged from the haze. Before there were men and women. Now there are men and women, and men who think they are women, and women who think they are men, and non binary types who think they are neither men nor women.

All Sam Smith wants you to do is live and let live, and subvert your objective opinion of Sam Smith’s biological reality, in favour of Sam’s Smith’s subjective opinion of said reality. Is that such a big ask? It’s more about kindness than anything else, isn’t it? Why would you risk hurting Sam Smith’s feelings, or the feelings of any non binary type, when all that is required of you is to deny your own reality and undermine the basic framework through which you view the world?

See, Sam Smith is smashing through the gender binary by rigidly adhering to its stereotypes. He is breaking new ground by suggesting that his perceived lack of manliness is actually because he is not fully a man. He may sound like a gay basher from the eighties, but that’s pure coincidence. Where’s the harm in it? All Sam Smith seeks of you is to narrow your version of what a man and woman is, so that the Sam Smiths of this world can live in the chasm, in-between. This abyss that’s been created for the inbetweeners grows ever wider and can only continue to expand, as emotional rhetoric and name calling replaces reasoned debate and sound research.

All Sam Smith wants to do is live a life that best reflects his inner perception of himself. Where’s the cost to you,  in a world that is reshaping itself round perceptions of sex, rather than actual sex, anyway? Why wouldn’t you want to help this party along? All Sam Smith wants from you, is a broadening of your vocabulary to reflect the dissemination of your boundaries and the colonisation of your sex class.

It would be downright unladylike to refuse.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hard Headed Woman

The jihadi bride story has got right under my skin.  In spite of my best attempts to ignore the media’s best attempts to manipulate a human interest story into a level 1 threat to our national security, I have been manipulated.  I care about the fate of this random nineteen year old kid.

In my defense, I’ve always been prone to a hard luck story and losing two babies seems like the hardest of luck.  Speaking of hard, I’ve seen the live Time’s interview and she comes across as harder than Grant Mitchell after someone’s insulted his Mother.  She’s all like ‘severed heads in bins don’t faze me’, which by any measure of normal thinking is deviant in the extreme.

Still, I can’t help thinking that the circumstances she finds herself in are extra-ordinary and difficult to view from a rational lens.  Take her teenage rebellion.  She didn’t drink herself into a near coma and make poor choices about intimate relationships, as is the British rite of passage.  Instead, she headed off to a foreign land and joined this century’s most notorious terrorist organisation.

I have no idea why she would do this when she could have smoked weed at the back of the school sheds.  Maybe all the grass dealers in the optimistically named Bethnal Green were rubbish, or deeply moral and didn’t want to sell to a fifteen year old?  Fifteen.  It’s terribly young, which is why we don’t let children this young drink, vote or have sex. Hell!  We don’t even let them join the army.  In fact, we wouldn’t have let Shamima Begum run away, if we could have stopped her.

That’s her name, by the way – Shamima Begum.  She wasn’t always a jihadi bride.  She was once just a fool hearty kid who bought into a seriously deranged ideology.

But, I’m probably missing the point.  Whatever she was then, she is now unrepentant. She wants to come back and she’s not even sorry.  There could be many reasons for this, the most obvious being – she’s completely f***ing nuts.  In the few years since she left home, she’s had two babies die.  Her third pregnancy is the motivating factor in her desire to return to Britain.  Between all the bairn’s deaths and her husband’s arrest and the bombing of her close friend and travelling companion, maybe she was too mentally and emotionally weak to de-radicalise herself and sound sane?  Maybe the papers who have shamelessly exploited her grief and fear weren’t too hung up on the ethics of their journalism?  Desperate for a sound bite, they were careful not to fill in too many blanks or to paint too much context.  And the woman with a casual indifference to severed heads becomes front page news.

And now, she’s no longer British, and that will teach her not to join the most high profile terrorist organisation of the twenty first century.  And still, I can’t help thinking that losing two babies will have taught her a lot and the chance to love this new born will teach her more.  Perhaps if we could get her home and de-radicalise her, she could even teach us something…

 

 

There ain’t no cis in sisters.

I’m not really sure what a cis woman is, which seems unfortunate given I am one, allegedly. I am sure what allegedly means, it’s an unproven claim. I know that word well because every time a woman is raped or sexually assaulted, the media gets that word in. Because it might not have happened. The woman might be making it up. Women do. Cis women, I mean.

Cis women have no real expectation of justice. This is reflected in the fact that only 15% of rapes are reported to police. So, those crimes you read about every day, that allegedly happen to cis women, are actually the tip of the iceberg.

Well over a million cis women will experience domestic abuse in the England and Wales this year, if last year’s statistics are an indicator.  20% of these women will see their perpetrators face criminal proceedings. That means the vast majority of these women victims will never see a man punished for his crimes against them. By inference, many of these perpetrators will go on to abuse, beat and maim other cis women. Two cis women will be killed this week by their male partner or ex partner. It’s almost as if putting the word cis before the word woman makes her no more lightly to to gain any measure of fair treatment.

Cis hasn’t really taken off in the real world, but is huge in feminist circles. Yeah, you read that right. The average woman on the street will give two fingers to the idea that she has to put a three lettered word before her sex, but self declared feminists are queuing up for a more complex way to describe their sex than plain old woman.

The fact that it is linguistically impossible to be cis and feminist seems to have gone over these women’s heads. Cis, in this context, means to be aligned with the gender that was determined at birth. No feminist ever aligned themselves with their birth gender. Whatever individual event, or series of them, took them to the door of feminism, their core motivation is always the same. An inability to accept the limitations placed on them by gender roles they were assigned, after their sex was determined. The very act of becoming feminist and standing up for women’s rights is a slap in the face to the gender expectation of women to be submissive. See?

Women are a class of people that are oppressed by another class of people (called men) under a system of oppression called the patriarchy. The patriarchy maintains its stronghold through violence and resource control. An obvious example of this is the universal obsession with birth control which leave women’s most basic health in the precarious hands of various religions and ideologies that value the seed she carries over her right to life.

Men don’t fear dying in child birth or being forced to carry a fetus they don’t want because men can’t get pregnant. There! I said it. We all know this, of course, ‘coz anyone old enough to read this started life the same way. We all had to serve our time in a woman’s womb, and whether pushed out of her vagina, or cut from her belly, we all had to sever that umbilical cord, before we took our first breath. So, lets hear it for all women everywhere, who have made the writing and the reading of this blog possible.

The cisters won’t like me now. What with the cis feminist is a paradox and men can’t get periods admissions. The cisters hate it when you talk sense. It confuses them, profoundly. This is evidenced by the censorship their ideology demands. Disagree, and we will call you TERF or SWERF  (These are real acronyms, I’m not making them up). Disagree louder, and we and we will demand your exclusion from our conversations, in the interests of inclusion, obviously. Disagree loud enough and we will get you fired, or at the very least, make sure you are never safe to speak publicly again.

In the past month, Linda Bellos has been no platformed, Julie Bindel has been harrased whilst promoting her new book and Helen Steel was surrounded by a mob at the anarchist book fair. Yeah, you read that right too.

As feminists, and as women, we need to ask ourselves what is progressive in telling women to STFU? As feminists we need to fight for all women to be heard. Even…cis ones.

 

Spoiler Alert – The Dr Foster ending is s***! (also lots of other spoilers!)

I’ve never been a huge fan of the B.B.C. What with the pedophilia, and the sexism, and the bias reporting and the licence. I object to the idea of paying a fee to watch the B.B.C., because the quality of material they produce does not amount to a fair return on investment.

If I wasn’t politically opposed to paying a licence, I would have bought one to watch Dr Foster. I’m a big fan, or I was, until today, when I watched last night’s episode. Now, I’m no longer a fan. I hate it.

If you haven’t seen it, don’t watch it. If you have, you’ll know why this advice is so pertinent. They took a beautiful and very rare thing, an intelligent, vengeful woman, with the ability to carry out a master plan to military precision, and they made her pay.

For loving her child, she paid. For hating her philandering, violent, gold-digging husband, she paid. For protecting herself, she paid. For protecting his new wife, she paid. For protecting her son, she paid. For facing the truth, and refusing to lie, she paid with her’s son life.

Not death, but the fate worse than that, the runaway child, who ain’t ever coming home. Because of her, see? She was a bad Mother, obviously, that’s why her kid is roaming the streets of some British city, alone, and utterly unprepared for what must surely now lie in store for him.

Only I thought she rocked. She could raise me any time. She put food on the table, and clothes on his back, and she was always kissing him, and asking him if he was okay. Sure, she f***ed over his Dad, but only in so far as he drew first. And in this series, she was a ball of re-action. There was nothing she could do from week to week, except respond to his ever increasing megalomania and his inability to take any responsibility for any facet of his existence.

The five week drama took an unexpected up-turn, last week, when the eponymous doctor ran her violent ex down…or so we thought. This week we learn, she swerved. He lived and contemplated suicide, including a few convincing attempts. By then, she’s compelled to talk him out of it, aware the son has internalised every s*** action he’s committed. Whilst saving her violent ex from himself, her self hating son flees.

The moral of the story is a Mother most never exact any level of righteous retribution on her ex.  To do so will so damage her children beyond all repair, they will abandon her and she will be left alone, with a bad hair-cut, to contemplate her moral and maternal failings for all eternity.

My first novel Nailing Jess was published by Cranachan in June this year.

 

 

 

TRIGGER WARNING HAPPY Trigger Warning: This blog contains no trigger warnings

The ‘Trigger Warning’ is having a moment. Much like after the bankers f***ed up the economy and ‘austerity’ went from being a word mostly found in Dickensian era literature to common usage overnight. In fact, it’s only very recently that ‘austerity’ has fallen out of favour as the blanket explanation for all the profit focused policies that have post dated it.

I could be wrong, but I don’t think ‘Trigger Warning’ is even a decade old. It is certainly very new to find it everywhere, all the time. Perhaps, it’s just the circles I frequent. The feminist ones, especially. They are just wall to ceiling ‘Trigger Warning’. Many make you agree to adding a ‘Trigger Warning’ to everything you post. Think about that, for a moment. Feminists sites that ask you to designate your feminist content potentially harmful to other feminists.

Perhaps I sound flippant? Like, I have missed the point. Trigger warnings are there to protect people, who may be experiencing P.T.S.D. (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) from being triggered by other people’s stories or even opinions. So far, so sensitive. But, ultimately, not sensitive enough, because here’s the type of content that might make a traumatised individual feel unsafe. F***ing anything!

Such is the nature of unresolved trauma that a smell, a sound, a taste, or a picture may resonate with some part of our deep sub conscious – where all the bad s*** lurks – and make us feel vulnerable, alone, sad. Such is the real dark stuff that happens to people in a patriarchy, that many spent their entire life’s a bit or a lot broken. Trigger Warnings won’t resolve their conflict. Truth and affirmative action is much more plausible.

When did feminists become so f***ing sensitive to the needs of everyone, all the time, whilst so simultaneously desensitised to the needs of women? Seriously, what is that about?

It’s all part of a wider conspiracy to make feminism so dull that only suburban house-wife’s and aspirational career types need apply. All the thinkers, all the truth seekers, all the herstorians – nope, it’s not a typo – will be either dead, or living in some underground compound in UTAH waiting for a post apocalyptic future with a less bleak outlook.

Can we stop censoring women? Can we stop patronising women? Can we recognise that talking about trauma is not inherently traumatic? It is not even as traumatic as not talking about it. Can we stop boring each other’s pants off with long, convoluted explanations of what feminism is? Can we narrow down the definition of feminism to more realistic aims? Can we make sure the draft includes stuff about women and their oppression under a patriarchy?

So, in summary, feminism is not an ideological version of a health spa. If you want to feel good about yourself, you need to see a life coach, or an emotional freedom therapist, or even a good old fashioned shrink. If you want to fight for the rights of women you need to find yourself some like minded women who call themselves feminists, but are also interested in such matters. And that, in this current climate of schizophrenic women;s rights, is a pretty hard find.

My debut novel Nailing Jess is available now from amazon and all good bookstores.

 

Everyday Feminism – I’ll take mine to go…

So, now that I’ve launched my book, I need to get back to blogging regularly. Blogging’s hard. You have to think up stuff to write about and then write about it. You have to have an opinion and be sure where you stand on something and the older I get, the less certain I become about where I stand on anything. Take feminism, for example. I used to be so sure of what feminism was. Then I discovered twitter. Some time later, I came to realise that my own understanding of what feminism was, which had come largely from the academic writings of the second wave feminists, was no longer relevant. Feminism had morphed into something entirely different. It had been re branded so that it might appeal to a broader section of society. And in theory, that’s a good thing, surely?

Everybody knows you’ve got to de-radicalise to maintain viewing figures. Remember New Labour? But, at what point, do you lose all credibility? At what point are you looking from the misogynist to the feminist, and then from the feminist to the misogynist and scratching your head? ‘Course it could be simply that the movement has evolved too fast for me, and I’m stuck in the rigid thinking of a by-gone era when feminism was all about fighting for women’s rights. Most especially, their right to control of their womb. Their right to live free from male perpetrated sexual and physical violence. Their right to protect their children from male perpetrated sexual and physical violence. Their right to an education. Their right to be self defined autonomous individuals, with control of their own destinies. Their right to live free of oppression and fear. It was a very rights based time.

And these sisters got shit done! Between all the toking and the dancing around naked and hairy in the gardens, coz body hair is a very political thing, they achieved practical, massive stuff. They got us divorce and abortion and contraception and women’s refuges. They got us better pay and working conditions and opportunities. They radically changed our lives. Then, as far as I can tell, they packed up and moved back to suburbia, in time for rush hour at the fertility clinic. There endeth the second wave. Now, we’re in the third wave, I think, it’s hard to keep up. Some even talk of a fourth, so it could be like a tsunami soon. Only, that’s not the feeling I get. This third wave seems very sketchy to me. I’m not even convinced it’s a wave, more of a series of ripples. Okay, enough with the ocean metaphor! But you get my point. Feminism is having a moment.

Everybody’s feminist right now. It’s not just Emma Watson. Teresa May is a feminist, she literally bought the t-shirt and that Canadian prime minister bloke, and of course Obama and also Ryan Gosling, though that could be an irony thing. There’s even talk that Kim Kardashian is a feminist. They are f**king everywhere! So, here’s the thing? How is it that the patriarchy can withstand the force of their numbers? ‘Coz latest update on the patriarchy is, it’s still standing strong, holding its own, making gains in many areas. Globally and locally it continues to win a war many feminists on the ground will tell you no longer exists. So, what’s up with that?

If I was a conspiracy theorist, which I’m not, I’d say that patriarchal thinking had infiltrated the feminist movement to such an effective degree as to render it neutral. The movement is now so lacking in threat that it is allowed to grow, wild and without nurture, in the corners of the most feeble brains.

Feminism is an ever evolving concept, we are told. There is no need to know its history before you sign up. Only, there is, and it’s there in those very words. His Story. And he owned the words. And as long as he didn’t educate her, she might always believe he was smarter than her. ‘Course these days she’s educated, in some countries, and in many she can get her hands on the internet. And how must he play her now?

It calls to mind a recent article published in the Gaurdian about a feminist that attacked a life size statue of Trump during its unveiling ceremony in Madrid.  She was one of that femen crowd, so she was topless. Femen, you may remember, was the topless women’s rights movement, set up by a bloke. And yes, origins matter, as anyone who is familiar with the tale of Adam and Eve, can validate. What I want to know is why?

I know that makes me a philistine, ‘coz art, especially performance protest art speaks for itself. And also, to be fair to her, she was very clear. She wrapped her fist around Trumps plastic, clothed crotch and painted ‘grab patriarchy by the balls’ on her naked back. I still want to know why? To what effect? For what purpose has she stripped and risked arrest? Greater purpose that is, than five minutes of twitter notoriety and a story to bore her dinner guests with in a decades time. And, when you break it down, what was her real, exposed body, groping a plasic effigy actually saying? Her slogan echos very hallow against the stark portrayal of her powerlessness. And, I don’t think that was the look she was going for.

I’d like to compare the lone wolf femen agitator for social change with the more logical, considered and ultimately liberating Irish feminists, who in 1971, took a train from Belfast, carrying contraceptives where they were restricted but legal, to Dublin where they continued to be completely illegal for another eight years. In fact, it wasn’t until 1993 that condoms became freely available. Picture that, folks! A world without johnies! This huge publicity stunt co-existed with the underground provision of contraception, thus the grassroots and the political, working together, created meaningful social change. And he quaked in his boots, ‘coz she created laws to stop him kicking her.

And that takes us the full circle back to what is feminism for? Take this Everyday Feminism, and after a quick scan of their vision, I’d rather leave it. Wtf are they selling? Seriously, it reads like a cross between a brahma kumaris leaflet and an early draft of some HR speech on political correctness for octogenarians still in the workplace. See, I like my feminism a bit more feminist, you know? I mean, its all well and good to save the dolphins and recognize the rights of indigenous people to self identify, but what are you doing about the rapists and perverts and the paedos? What’s your plan to keep the refuges open? When they close, more women have to remain living with violent men, and it’s really hard to find your zen when you’re not sure if you or your kids will make it though the night without a beating. How’s the fight for reproductive control going? ‘Coz if we lose that, on top of the refuges, and the legal aid, well then it’s going to take a lot more than a spot of yoga to redress the balance, don’t you think?

So, to summarise, yoga is great if you want to detox and re energise, but has proved singularly ineffective when used as a weapon of war, as the exiled Tibetan monks would surely testify. Feminism is a movement to agitate for the rights of women. When working properly it can change laws, create new laws, allow women autonomy over their own bodies, generate finances and power, facilitate education, free women’s minds and empower them to self realize beyond the confines of their patriarchal jailers. When defunct, it can’t do much, except spit out mindless art or intellectually warped philosophy and distract. And oh, how he laughs, but these oh so clever people, they don’t get the joke….

My debut novel Nailing Jess, published by Cranachan, is available for download for 99p on Amazon for the month of July.