What is this slogan for?

Suzanne Moore in The Telegraph:

I was a bit worried, I must admit, that I was doing this womanhood thing all wrong. For my whole life I haven’t really got the hang of it. There are many things that women are meant to be interested in: shopping, baking programmes, thrillers in which other women get tortured that leave me cold. Ditto: weddings, dating, baby showers, celebrity gossip about torsos with pouts.

And that’s just to start with.

But I shouldn’t have worried because the United Nations has come up with a new slogan and tweeted “There is no wrong way to be a woman. There is no wrong way to be a woman.” They actually said it seven times, but I don’t want you to pass out with boredom. Maybe if you chant it you reach nirvana or maybe women are just so thick they need telling over and over.

It’s because repetition makes it convincing.

It’s probably a page taken from religion’s book: repetition is a valued tool in that particular way of making humans believe stuff that is just made up. Recite this prayer every day, or better yet, recite it ten times every day. If you say it that often it must be true.

The right way to react to this ridiculous mantra is surely to feel murderous. What is this slogan for? Who is it for? These endless attempts at inclusivity mean that being a woman can now even be a feeling in a man’s head. Eddie Izzard, I saw the other day, had been voted the best female comedian. Sorry, but I am not laughing.

There is no wrong way to be a woman. Are they serious? Let me list the ways. I and many women live with them every single day.One of them is to live in fear. One woman is killed every three days in this country – a figure which has become much higher in lockdown. Being old is also seen by many as the wrong way to be a woman. Another is wanting sex. Or not wanting it at all. Both of these things can be regarded as “problematic”.

Having an opinion; not having an opinion. Talking; not talking. Laughing; not laughing. Having a job; not having a job.

You see, in recent years, it has been mostly wrong to be a woman in public life who stands up for the sex-based rights of other woman. Standing up for trans people is decent and right, but standing up for the rights of women apparently makes one a transphobe. If you start talking about the female experience and think it’s not just different to men’s but different for women of different ethnicities and classes, you will be called a bigot. Your job as a woman, unlike a man’s, is to include everyone, all the time.

And that goes double triple a hundred for men who say they are women. If you don’t include them in the Women Club you might as well carve up puppies and make tacos out of them.

One thing is clear though – if you are a woman the message you receive from birth is that you are pretty much always doing it wrong. That you will never be good enough.

Of course we can unite around all kinds of differences, and let them flourish. But these are differences that need to be acknowledged and talked about. Not brushed away in a simple ‘inclusive’ virtue signalling slogan. Otherwise we are left with a regurgitation of patent nonsense and the denial of women’s embodied experience. Womanhood becomes reduced to just an individual choice.

And if it’s just an individual choice, what the hell are we complaining about?

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