The ‘tough’ woman who thinks a slap or a put down will sort sexual harassment out

Edwina Currie is far from being a good egg when it comes to understanding sexual harassment

There is a certain type of woman popping up on the media all gung ho style and jolly hockey stick japes to tout a version of female machismo which, apparently, all women ought to have adopted or should adopt to fend off male harassment. The flick of the female hand followed by a witty put-down in a voice that is serious enough to convey her rebuttal would have been sufficient, supposedly, to stop the tidal wave of allegations being made by women around the world of sexual harassment.

It started a few weeks ago with Elizabeth Hurley being interviewed on Sky News about how Harvey Weinstein had never made any advances towards her. The reason for this, according to Hurley, was because Weinstein knew that she would have thwacked him.

It is an extremely puerile and self-obsessed view which considers oneself as being above the ugliness of harassment based on one’s belief in one’s own supposed strength of character.

Did it occur to Elizabeth Hurley that the women who fell victim to Weinstein’s predatory nature were the brave and strong ones who used their voices to speak up rather than peddle forth some nonsense about how treating men as if they were children would immediately rid them of their predatory nature? Probably not.

That was the first hint of the daft dumbed down thinking espoused by self proclaimed ‘strong women’ that was to be inflicted on us.

Since then, we have had Julia Hartley-Brewer give us her opinion on the gradations of sexual harassment with a hand on the knee hardly registering on the scale. This, ironically, is the woman who informed the public about the time Michael Fallon put his hand on her knee. She has downplayed the incident even though she brought it up herself. In all this muddly mix one struggles to find a nugget of wisdom on how to deal with sexual harassment.

Edwina Currie who appeared on the ‘BBC This Week’ programme came across as someone who is extremely out of touch with the modern female world of work and play when she defended to the death, as I saw it, a man’s right to be a man. Edwina Currie is the archetypal older woman who went through the political system some decades ago and thinks that the world has not and, more to the point, should not change to alter the yesteryear when it pandered to men’s whims.

Adopting a macho attitude to male perpetrated sexual harassment is akin to being an apologist for it. These type of women will bend over backwards to accommodate men because it makes them feel equal to the so-called ‘superior sex’. They are desperate to show that they have made it in a man’s world by playing by the rules set by men. It makes these women feel macho and macho is good. Margaret Thatcher was the high priestess of this school of thought.  

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