When does feminism go too far?
When does feminism go too far?
I've been very excited the last few days. The trigger was the shit storm around the astrophysicist Dr. Matt Taylor. He was instrumental in the landing of the space probe on the asteroid Rosetta, the so-called Rosetta mission. One would think that on such a special day the focus should be on a successful mission that researchers have worked towards for a decade. But no, the social media world is upset about the shirt of the overjoyed physicist Taylor instead. Yep, his shirt! The charge against him: sexism. Granted, the shirt is a matter of taste. The discussion about this shirt quickly degenerates into a shitstorm (or #shirtstorm), which ultimately leads to the same, previously euphoric scientist asking the public for forgiveness in a tear-choked voice in a later interview.
First of all, I can't understand the outcry over his shirt in the slightest. Well, his shirt with half-naked cartoon women was certainly not the best choice of clothes for such an interview. If, in my opinion, anyone should be criticized, it is the ESA PR department, because it has not done its job of preparing media-independent scientists for social media reality and protecting them from precisely such situations. Or maybe ESA and Matt Taylor just wanted to create a little authenticity.
Couldn't it be that he wore this shirt, not to potentially offend someone, but because he liked the colors and he just feels good in this shirt? Or even more simple: he just doesn't have a good style of clothing? Why must sexism be assumed at this point, why should this shirt automatically convey a message? Couldn't it be that he had something else on his mind that day than “Mh, what am I wearing?”. It makes me incredibly angry that a pack of feminists and politically overly correct people call on him to hunt him down and publicly humiliate him, so that the next interview he starts with an apology before he still hoarsely answers the actual questions about the comet landing. The greatest moment of his career was definitely destroyed. Hence the most important question for me: Is feminism allowed to go as far as to engage in some kind of cyberbullying?
Feminism is important, but I think it is inappropriate, disrespectful and frankly abnormal at this point. Sure, there is still a lot to be done in terms of equality: Equal salaries in the sense of "the same salary for the same work", I would also like more women in management positions but no quota and I would also like to see more young women sign up for so-called " Men's professions ”, but now comes my but: I don't think that seeing equal rights and women as sex objects is not expressed in a shirt. If he were to meet me as a colleague, I would at least not immediately think that he sees women and thus me as pure sex objects, rather I would smile at his extremely bad clothing style, which competes with 13-year-old teenage boys. And let's ask ourselves what the yardstick is: Does a grown man on international television have to cry because of bullying, because of a shirt he was wearing? I think the reactions under the hashtag “Shirtstorm” are exaggerated.
If you look at his interview, he describes the Rosetta mission as follows: "Rosetta is the sexiest mission there is, but I never said it was easy." So I see his shirt as an example for the mission, not as an outleash against women.
Doesn't feminism also stand for freedom and equality? But why do these women act like cyber bullies who bully an adult to such an extent that all they can hope for is a public apology and the reckless accusations will subside? Shouldn't the right to freedom also apply to a man's choice of clothes? Feminism is a freedom movement, but don't the feminists on the internet demand a restriction of the elementary freedom of an individual?
It's also interesting where his fancy shirt comes from: his close friend Elly Prizeman made it for him. The eagle eyes among you will have noticed that she is a woman. If you are interested in what else she wrote besides these two Facebook updates, you can read it here. If you look at her profile, the tattoos of Matt Taylor, it quickly becomes clear that he's in the rockabilly scene - half-naked women on dresses and shirts are almost good form. I also have a rockabilly dress with pin-ups on it, but I don't think that would make me an opponent of women's rights.
Milo Yiannopoulos' theory is funny. Obviously, he thinks the aspirations of feminists are so absurd that he rather assumes that the call for #Shirtgate can be more the campaign of clever anti-feminists.
Apart from the fact that it's silly to talk more about a mundane shirt after such an epic mission, I (as a woman) don't understand how other women can feel so attacked by the choice of clothing an astrophysicist makes. As a self-confident woman, can't you even stand above something like that? The guy's a nerd, albeit a cool one. Take a look at him: Despite the tattoos, he looks nerdy, one of his tattoos even shows the Rosetta landing! You could put him as he is in the flat share from Big Bang Theory!
And as long as there are women like Kim Kardashian and women becoming online bullies, I believe there are much bigger construction sites for feminists all over the world, sexism in not just men's minds, but also in their heads by women. How do you see this topic?
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