January 03, 2012
I come bearing great tidings to the women of the world: You no longer have any problems.
Genital mutilation has been wiped out, rape is a thing of the past, and the price of chocolate has dropped to record lows.
That’s the only conclusion I can reach when confronted with the feminist crisis de la semaine:
The inclusion of a panda in the BBC’s annual list of female “Faces of the Year.”
That panda would be “Sweetie,” on loan to the Edinburgh Zoo along with her would-be mate. “Zoo bosses,” we’re told, “are hoping that they will reproduce.”
Labour MP Stella Creasy came dangerously close to making a decent point when she declared, presumably while stamping her tiny foot:
Whilst we all love a good panda story, in a year when Christine Lagarde became head of the IMF, or Helle Thorning-Schmidt became prime minister of Denmark or even the sad death of Amy Winehouse, its [sic] frustrating the BBC couldn’t think of 12 human female faces who have made the news this year.
If only she’d stopped at “Denmark.”
Last I checked Google, there were over 350 news stories about this “controversy,” although some of these stories purport to analyze how such stories become stories in the first place.
One easy answer is Twitter. Furious females (and an alarming number of males) using the hashtag “#pandagate” targeted journalist Bob Chaundy for punishment, since his byline appeared on the BBC’s “Faces” webpage.
Chaundy Tweeted back:
I didn’t choose the BBC women faces of the year subjects, just wrote them. Two black eyes from the wife though. Pandamonium!
He added that the BBC’s annual list is supposed to be lighthearted, but appealing to feminists’ senses of humor is as productive as asking an unknown number of them to screw in a lightbulb. The BBC itself gently reminded the outraged that previous lists included a carp and a pig. Confronted with that inconvenient fact, the complainers hurriedly invented a new problem. The real trouble with the list was that the human women on it were an embarrassment, too. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords made it for being shot in the head; hotel maid Nafissatou Diallo, for allegedly being sexually assaulted by Dominique Strauss-Kahn; and Iman al-Obeidi after claiming she’d been gang-raped by Gaddafi’s soldiers in Libya.
Rounding out the Faces of the Year: a chubby singer who turned getting dumped by her boyfriend into a lucrative career; a bride (who became a princess); Michele Bachmann; another bride (who also became a princess); the president of Brazil; yet another bride (who was already a duchess); and the Marine who invited Justin Timberlake to the ball. Oh, and some Chinese tennis player. In other words, a coven of romcom or political-thriller characters in the flesh. Life imitating middlebrow trash. Couldn’t the BBC come up with even a dozen names without including any victims or consorts? And why, come to think of it, did the BBC’s “Sports Personality of the Year” list not include a single woman? Hmmmm??
Predictably—these are women we’re talking about—all this bitchery circled the real issue instead of confronting it. That’s because women don’t complain because they’re looking for an answer. They complain for the sake of complaining, and receiving a sensible, solution-based response takes all the fun out of that.
The sensible and therefore unpopular response to “#pandagate” is that most women long to be princess brides, a minuscule number of them get their wish, and the rest don’t do anything to deserve a spot on “Faces of the Year” lists. That’s because women tend to be lazy or stupid or both.
(Actually, the first sensible response to “#pandagate” would be to shoot the tiresome “-gate” suffix in the head and leave it to rot in a culvert, then replace it with the infinitely superior “-quiddick.”)
As one of my fellow females puts it, “If women ran the world, mankind would still be living in caves, albeit with really, really fancy curtains.”
Women don’t cure diseases, they just design new colored ribbons.
Anyone who’s worked in a modern office knows that the feminization of the workplace has decreased productivity and rendered men bitterly resentful and/or borderline gay. Women whose “careers” amount to pushing little pieces of paper from one cubicle to the next wearily sigh ad nauseam about their need for “a break,” usually in the form of yet another office birthday or engagement party or baby shower. At every “real” job I’ve held, the women around me—be they Sex and the City clones or Roman Catholic nuns—have talked for hours every day about what they’d had (or hadn’t) for breakfast, what they planned to have for lunch, what they wound up having for lunch instead, and what they were having for dinner. I would have preferred one of those “hostile work environments” in which, legend has it, obnoxious male employees crack innuendos nonstop. Alas, there was no procedure in place for me to file complaints against “culinary harassment.”
So ladies, don’t blame the BBC for your inability to knock a zoo animal out of last spot on some year-end list. “Sweetie” eats nothing but grass yet gets fatter and fatter, thinks sex is a chore, and does nothing to earn its own keep, unless “looking adorable” counts. I can’t think of a better addition to any tally of notable modern females.
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