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Singing Without Hope on the Boundary

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If you don't like Harriet you're sexist
Harriet Harman did PMQs today if you didn't know. I did and listened with interest to the exchanges at lunchtime and it was as I listened to the empty rhetoric that spewed from her mouth, the same empty rhetoric we've been hearing for what seems like forever from this government that I realised that I probably didn't like her. Her answers were predictable, her tone dismissive and shrill, her scripted barbs delivered poorly, and her gaffes laughable, but I'm a fair guy and certainly not the type of person to dismiss someone after just thirty minutes. No indeed, I prefer to look at the rank hypocrisy that is displayed by her voting records. There it is all laid out for you: for ID cards; for the anti-terrorism legislation; for the Iraq war. The best wheeze is where she is for a transparent parliament but against an investigation into the Iraq war. The rub is that she is a party girl and not the type of party girl who turns up bladdered with a box of wine at the slightest hint of a gathering of people. She is New Labour through and through and hardly ever votes against her party. Reason enough to dislike her I guess. Well apparently that's not the reason. The reason: I'm sexist.

As I listened on after PMQs to the incisive "analysis" by Radio 5's political guru Simon Mayo and the three representatives of the main parties I was told in no uncertain terms that if I didn't like Harriet Harman I was sexist. That's right, I can try and hide behind all my arguments about her politics and her attitude but the real reason, the deep down subconscious reason I don't like Harriet is because she is a woman and worse still a successful woman. I, as a man, cannot deal with it and therefore seek to belittle her and mock her performance today.


This is insulting on so many levels it is difficult to know where to begin, but begin I will so hold on to your hats.

Firstly this is a clear tactic that has been used many times before. If you can tar someone with a horrible label like sexist, racist, homophobic etc it puts you in a very powerful position. It's helpful for those who use it because no-one wants to be seen as one of those things so will immediately start to argue the point that they are not sexist/racist/homophobic. It is also helpful because you're arguments are then reduced to the value of Icelandic currency. "Yeah he may have a point about Harriet but he doesn't like her because he's sexist so..."

Secondly, they are saying that anyone who doesn't share a good opinion of dear Harri is fundamentally flawed. How dare they imply that because I don't like a woman that my character is fundamentally flawed and I should be ignored along with those who attacked her and ridiculed her at PMQs today. How dare they suggest that because I have formed my own opinion about a woman in a position of power I must have had that opinion informed by misogyny. It's okay though because I'm a bloke so it's got to be expected after all it's all about tits and arse and cars and beer innit? I'm stupid and backward and fink women are only good for a shag. All men are. Apparently.

Thirdly it is insulting to every woman who can't stand her. Obviously, due to all haters of Harriet being sexist, all women who dislike her for the many reasons they could and should are suddenly betrayers of the sisterhood and idiots for going along with the normal patriarchal attitudes that pervade parliament. Add to this the fact that an MP on the show actually invoked the sisterhood by saying that women liked her and had to like her because she's down to earth, she had a baby, she applied for a job when pregnant and blah blah blah. It's amazing. That's right women, you can't think for yourselves and dislike Harriet because she's a woman and you are too. Those dangerous opinions you have could endanger the women's movement so you better leave the thinking to us women at the top. How insulting, how fucking insulting to men, to women, to everyone.

Now it doesn't surprise me that somebody has said this shit, there is always somebody there somewhere who is going to label someone something when they don't agree with them. The fact that this was said on a national broadcaster, wasn't even challenged by the host and was supported by idiot members of the public is what really takes the biscuit. These attacks on people with different opinions to the accepted line have become so normalised that no-one even bats an eyelid anymore.

So I'm taking a stand here and now. I dislike Harriet Harman because she is useless, two-faced, manipulative, and a cheerleader and member for a malignant political party which is slowly eroding this country, not because I'm sexist and I will not allow those of you who would label me and others as such to belittle and denigrate our arguments. I know it's all you have left but we're growing in number, we're getting pissed off and sooner or later you will have to answer to the charges that are leveled against you and no amount of calling people sexist or anything else is going to prevent that.

Also she's a twat.