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Pardons for the suffragettes? What a cheap, patronising cover-up

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by SteveJ, Feb 7, 2018.

  1. Feb 7, 2018
    #1

    SteveJ all-round nice guy, aka Uncle Joe Kardashian Scout

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    'In this po-faced tinkering with the legacy of dead heroines, the endemic male violence women face today is so easily forgotten'
    https://www.theguardian.com/comment...heap-patronising-cover-up-male-violence-women
  2. Feb 7, 2018
    #2

    Smores Full Member

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    Or its just a symbolic gesture of goodwill, that once again puts it into the news.

    Even though its the paper i mostly read, a certain section of the guardian is basically a feminist version of RAWK
  3. Feb 7, 2018
    #3

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    Exactly. I don't remember anyone losing their shit about how "patronising" it was to posthumously issue Alan Turing a royal pardon over his prosecution for homosexuality. Because it was the right thing to do and a nice way to honour his memory. This is no different.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2018
  4. Feb 7, 2018
    #4

    rcoobc Not as crap as eferyone thinks

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    And yet... it was not all homosexual men that were pardoned, but one singular man.

    Would Alan Turing have turned down his pardon had he lived to been offered it? He certainly wasn't against the idea of using his status as a National Asset during his trial in 1952, but Turing had friends and ex lovers who were persecuted in the exact same way, including Arnold Murray.

    [​IMG]

    I'm not sure what the benefit to these pardons are. Maybe we should just say "we weren't good enough, we're sorry, you did nothing wrong."
  5. Feb 7, 2018
    #5

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    Like I said. I think they're done because it's the right thing to do and it's an opportunity to posthumously honour people who did something good for society but ended up being harshly punished by the criminal courts. Fair point about there being a need to pardon everyone ever found guilty of an outdated law but it's not hard to see why the more high profile cases are more likely to come under scrutiny.
  6. Feb 7, 2018
    #6

    Sweet Square Full Member

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    :rolleyes:
  7. Feb 7, 2018
    #7

    ivaldo Mediocre Horse Whisperer, s'up wid chew?

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    So really damned if you do, damned if you don't.
  8. Feb 7, 2018
    #8

    InfiniteBoredom CAF Political Statistician

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    Public apology and compensation for the afflicted/their families would be better than 'right, you are pardoned for fighting your corner'.
  9. Feb 7, 2018
    #9

    ivaldo Mediocre Horse Whisperer, s'up wid chew?

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    It might be. But it doesn't make the notion of a pardon any less appropriate. It's clearly meant as a gesture of good will, and not as a strickening of our governments past faults.
  10. Feb 7, 2018
    #10

    Mike Schatner Devil's advocnut

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    A more fitting thing than a pardon is celebrating them. Maybe a national monument with a list of all those that stood up against oppression. A new equal opportunities bank holiday would be a good gesture.
  11. Feb 8, 2018
    #11

    redman5 Full Member

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    I like the idea of having an extra bank holiday. That way us men can spend the afternoon in the pub toasting the brave suffragettes whilst our good ladies back home can make sure we have a good, hearty meal waiting for us when we get in.
  12. Feb 8, 2018
    #12

    SteveJ all-round nice guy, aka Uncle Joe Kardashian Scout

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    The writer is merely making a similar point as when some people turn down an MBE, and only reactionary types make a big fuss about that. She has a right to be both angry, militant, and suspicious of the true motivation behind the state's belated, shabby & half-arsed mea culpa. Besides, without such anger and militancy, women would probably still be ineligible to vote.
  13. Feb 10, 2018
    #13

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    I missed this. I can get why the gesture may be well meant, but is ultimately a hollow one, but is it better to continue ignoring them?

    A statue may be a nice idea, but nothing we do can obviously make up for what happened to these long-dead women.

    I take issue with her 'rape-symbolic' description of force-feeding. Would she say about when Ian Brady, Peter Sutcliffe or male IRA inmates were force-fed while on hunger strike or is it only when it happens to women?
  14. Feb 10, 2018
    #14

    Mciahel Goodman Worst Werewolf Player of All Times Staff

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    The first two don't belong with the third, Jippy.
  15. Feb 10, 2018
    #15

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    It was their gender rather than their reasons for incarceration tbh. Not likening Bobby Sands to Brady:lol:
  16. Feb 10, 2018
    #16

    Mike Schatner Devil's advocnut

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    Maybe it should be a women only Bank Holiday.
  17. Feb 10, 2018
    #17

    Scrumpet There are no words

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    It does seem strange to me to consider a pardon for things that would still be illegal today. There’s a reason Turing got a pardon and not Wilde.

    Edit: After googling it seems like I’m wrong on that. Though Wilde may have done plenty that would still be illegal today that wasn’t what his conviction was for.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
  18. Feb 10, 2018
    #18

    SteveJ all-round nice guy, aka Uncle Joe Kardashian Scout

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    Yeah, good point, mate.
  19. Feb 10, 2018
    #19

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    Doesn't sound like you think it is!
  20. Feb 10, 2018
    #20

    NinjaFletch Full Member

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    Isn't it?

    I feel like thats a very forced comparison. At a basic level the difference between the two is that we, as a society, find the law Turing was convicted of absolutely abhorrent; it's one thing saying 'the law you were convicted under should never have been a law in the first place' and quite another to say 'you broke the law as part of a good cause so it shouldn't matter'.

    Whether the author overstates her argument or not I do think it's slightly missing the point to retroactively strip convictions from a bunch of people whose very civil disobedience was the whole point. It seems more about washing our hands as a society today of the attitudes of the past than it does about genuinely recognising how hard they had to fight for the same rights as men.

    I don't think its ridiculous to suggest that a better memorial to the suffragettes would be to continue fighting for women's rights in the future rather than to try and change the past.
  21. Feb 10, 2018
    #21

    SteveJ all-round nice guy, aka Uncle Joe Kardashian Scout

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    No, I agree with you. :)
  22. Feb 10, 2018
    #22

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    OK:) i am interested in how you'd approach this situation though- it's a tough one.
  23. Feb 10, 2018
    #23

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    The whole premise is ridiculous. The idea that this gesture takes away from the ongoing efforts for women’s rights is stupid. It’s not a zero sum game. Taking an opportunity to honour the efforts of suffragettes many years ago has feck all negative impact on women’s rights today, or in the future. This is classic Grauniad click bait. Give a forum to overly sensitivite ninnies who will find a way to take offence at anything, then sit back and watch the comments roll in. Reverse Daily Mailism.
  24. Feb 10, 2018
    #24

    SteveJ all-round nice guy, aka Uncle Joe Kardashian Scout

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    Sadly, in much the same way as the very politicians I'd criticise: an apology & a resolve to improve matters for women in future. I don't have sufficient imagination for this task, unfortunately.
  25. Feb 10, 2018
    #25

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    With the push for corporate diversity, the likes of Legal & General and Fidelity- giant asset managers- have appointed female heads of diversity. I want to set up a series of interviews with them. Oh god is it bad if I ask my female deputy to do them? I don't mind splitting them and know her well enough that we can talk about it frankly.
  26. Feb 10, 2018
    #26

    SteveJ all-round nice guy, aka Uncle Joe Kardashian Scout

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    Don't ask me, chief - I'm the twit who puts his sim card in upside-down.
  27. Feb 10, 2018
    #27

    NinjaFletch Full Member

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    That's an incredibly cheap dismissal of an argument. Would you take it more seriously if SteveJ had started the thread with Caroline Criado-Perez's article in the New Statesman? Or what about Hannah Quirk's (excellent) article in the Conversation who both lay out why this is a problematic issue?

    Anyway, I think it's an incredibly interesting discussion, and one worth having when plenty of people still involved in the fight think it's very far from an 'honour' to pardon the suffragettes. Boiling it down to 'overly sensitive ninnies who find a way to take offence at anything' is itself incredibly patronising (and perhaps even a bit tone deaf considering the fact this discussion touches on the attitudes the suffragettes had to deal with) and a complete and utter failure to engage with the substance of what is being said.
  28. Feb 10, 2018
    #28

    Pogue Mahone Poster of the year 2008

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    That’s because there is no substance. Like I said, it’s based on a false premise. The idea that this initiative detracts from the ongoing efforts for woman’s rights is poppycock. I know it sounds harsh but that really is an absurdly over-sensitive way to interpret this gesture. Which isn’t hugely surprising coming from a movement that has demonstrably lost the run of itself in increasingly far-fetched efforts to take offence where none exists.
  29. Feb 10, 2018
    #29

    redman5 Full Member

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    That would be sexist though.
  30. Feb 10, 2018
    #30

    Mike Schatner Devil's advocnut

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    Then us men could protest, go on marches on match day, chain ourselves to those little foot-rails under bars in pubs etc.
  31. Feb 10, 2018
    #31

    redman5 Full Member

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    We could call ourselves: Men Against Discrimination. Or M.A.D for short.
  32. Feb 10, 2018
    #32

    NinjaFletch Full Member

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    Well no, firstly it argues that there is no 'ongoing effort for woman's rights' from the government. It's not a zero-sum game, but in Criado-Perez' words:

    You may not agree with that argument, but it's certainly not an argument that deserves to be dismissed as 'absurdly over-sensitive' out of hand.

    Secondly, that's only half the argument. I've yet to see you engage with the other half of it.

    I can see why the first article would get your back up – and I have little time for her style either – but I don't think the baby should be chucked out of the bathwater because of it. Even if you think the suffragettes should ultimately be pardoned, it seems perfectly sensible to discuss whether a pardon is a fitting 'honour' for their legacy and whether pardons should be used in this way in the first place. Many think it is not, and many others think that they shouldn't. Dismissing those arguments as coming purely from 'over-sensitivity' is wrong.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2018
  33. Feb 10, 2018
    #33

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    So how would you celebrate the suffragettes without causing offence?

    Don't underestimate the respect your views are held in here.
  34. Feb 10, 2018
    #34

    NinjaFletch Full Member

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    It may seem like a cop out but I'd argue we already celebrate the suffragettes in the best possible way, which is the involvement of women (and every other social group that got the vote alongside them in 1918 and 1928) in the democratic process. With that in mind I wonder if the best possible celebration of the suffragettes going forward is the embracing of their legacy. On the one hand we can continue to fight for equality and on the other question whether full universal suffrage could be even fuller, and ensure that their legacy isn't forgotten by ensuring they're taught in schools and people are actively reminded that their right to vote (men too) owes a lot to movement.
  35. Feb 10, 2018
    #35

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    I agree with all of that but struggle to know what it means ultimately.
  36. Feb 10, 2018
    #36

    NinjaFletch Full Member

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    In terms of what I mean specifically with what I've said?

    I actually think the most fascinating thing about the suffragettes legacy going forward is going to be how public perception of changes over the next hundred years. Already some intersectional feminists, whilst acknowledging the legacy of the suffragettes, express issues with how people of colour (male and female) and lower classes were marginalised in the fight for suffrage across the globe. I have a feeling that if and when intersectional feminism becomes mainstream people are going to start focussing more on the negative aspects than the positive. Not the time or place for that discussion mind, but it's definitely interesting.
  37. Feb 11, 2018
    #37

    Jippy Sleeps with tramps, bangs jacuzzis, dirty shoes Scout

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    Crikey, had never actually thought whether they marginalised ethnic minorities, but ultimately they were campaigning for universal suffrage which covered them too, surely?
  38. Feb 11, 2018
    #38

    afrocentricity Part of first caf team to complete Destiny raid

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  39. Feb 11, 2018
    #39

    NinjaFletch Full Member

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    The answer is, as always, it depends – I think. I'd preface this by saying we're moving into an area that I'm not as familiar with as I should be, so I may be oversimplifying.

    But the issue is, as always, that historical figures are products of their time and even ones that did a lot of good held opinions and ideas that are out of step with what we consider right now. That's true for the suffragettes as much as anyone else.

    As the fight for suffrage was a global movement there were worse expressions of marginalisation in some places than others. Susan B. Anthony came out with some incredibly questionable stuff in the US, and there's always a pervading sense that the campaign for female suffrage separated itself from the campaign for racial equality because they thought it might damage the movement.

    In the UK the issue is less clear cut, perhaps, but still there. Emmeline Pankhurst, despite her fostering of the still troublesome 'I'd rather be a rebel than a slave' motto became a huge supporter of Empire, and Fawcett is reported to have been incensed that Maiori women in NZ received the vote before white women in the UK. There was always a bit of a sense of 'well civilised white women in Britain should have the right to vote if the uncivilised brutes elsewhere in the world do'; that came with the territory of Britain's colonial mindset.

    Some leaders were, at best, uninterested in the fight for working class women's right to vote. The Pankhurst's fell out over the issue with Sylvia Pankhurst later saying that Emmeline had said “a working woman’s movement was of no value; working women were the weakest portion of the sex, how could it be otherwise? Their lives were too hard, their education too meagre to equip them for the contest.”.

    However we choose to square the circle with the good they did, and however future generations choose to do so, it's a part of the fight that deserves not to be forgotten.
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  40. Feb 11, 2018
    #40

    SteveJ all-round nice guy, aka Uncle Joe Kardashian Scout

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    It's noticeable that when Dr King widened the scope of civil rights to include the fight for all workers' rights, he was shot by one of conveniently-available disguntled lone wolf fellows.