Monica Lennon is a Labour Councillor for Hamilton North and East who’s currently hitting the campaign trail in Scotland. She recently received a seemingly normal email from one of her constituents which also contained some #everydaysexism.
When it comes to perceptions of sexism and offence, EYE believe it is reasonable (and important) to consider the impact of the offence experienced by the ‘victim’ over and above any consideration regarding wether or not the ‘perpetrator’ genuinely intended to cause offence with their choice of language.
So whilst EYE respect Councillor Lennon’s opinion that she considers this to be a valid example of casual #everydaysexism, EYE do think it is at the lower end of the #offence spectrum, particularly when compared to some examples of sexism that Laura Bate’s project consistently ignores.
To be honest, I’m not convinced the Labour party are particularly in touch with their constituents (#illegalwars) and Councillor Lennon’s intervention did remind me a little of Gordon Brown’s regrettable #bigotgate moment at the height of the last general election, so EYE decided to dig a little deeper.
EYE asked Councillor @MonicaLennon7 about what sort of response she got from the perpetrator of her #everydaysexism moment when she informed them that their words were offensive.
Initially EYE didn’t get a response so EYE fired off an email based on my understanding that public officials have to provide a reply to written queries. EYE then noticed she was still chatting about it online so decided to chip in and this time EYE got an answer to my question (sort of).
And after ten minutes of silence…
I’m not sure if it’s cause EYEisBloke but when EYE attempt to engage self identifying feminists in a discussion about sexism they will very often (and quite rudely) simply blank me. On this occasion 5 hours after asking my question I was still waiting for a response and Councillor Lennon had moved on to tweeting about #GE2015.
In fairness her tweets indicated that she had been out and about talking to (and about) more of her constituents so perhaps she just hadn’t found the time to answer my question.
Anywho… after sending the first draft of this post I did finally get an answer (sort of)…
Which reading around the glass bind spots I assume to means that while Councillor Lennon is happy to brand one of her own constituents as a sexist, she’d prefer to conveniently skirt around the possibility of sharing this opinion with the prospective Labour voter who’s behaviour she has very publicly called out.
(I think) the whole point of the #everydaysexismproject is to educate people about the types of sexist behaviour that should be challenged and called out in a civilised modern world. In my humble subjective opinion, you can hardly expect a person to change their behaviour someone doesn’t explain to them what the problem is.
Be seeing you.