(c) Doc Hackenbush 2014
And to no surprise at all, Ms Mensch is now at it again. After the Telegraph’s tedious pundit Julia Hartley Brewer found that a debate she had attended had turned out not necessarily to her advantage, she used the bully pulpit afforded her by that paper to tell anyone still reading of “My thoughts after an evening spent debating ‘Is feminism the new F word’. Deep sighs all round”. The subject of her ire was clear.
“I spent most of the evening being lectured on how to be a proper feminist by a 17 year old fellow panellist” she whined. Just to make sure readers got the point, a link was inserted into the online version to confirm that that panellist was June Eric-Udorie, who has written for the Guardian and Staggers. Ms Mensch, who has a remarkable ability to detect arguments involving young pundits, decided to wade in. Ms Eric-Udorie was unimpressed.
“Hello - thanks for RTing abuse and opening me up to more. Don't get what your *issue* is with outspoken young women … And one more thing - it says a lot about you to patronise young women like me and [Abby Tomlinson] on Twitter. It's really sad” she responded. Ms Mensch engaged maximum patronising mode: “You weren't ‘abused’, #GenerationSnowflake, you were rightly slammed by @JuliaHB for moronic fauxminism”.
Would Ms Mensch care to tell what was wrong with Ms Eric-Udorie’s arguments? You jest. It’s all about hectoring and patronising: “You chose to be a panel debater, and you will take the consequences that come from a public platform you asked for [not sure it was public, but hey ho] and, while this may be a shock to you, @TWCuddleston & #GenerationSnowflake being ‘young’ isn't a shield against criticism”.
So what criticism would Ms Mensch care to make? “‘Issue’ is with moronic arguments. Doubly if 17 year olds seek public platforms to make them, then protest criticism”. So what is wrong with those arguments, and where is the criticism? We don’t get to hear about that: “you are clearly mad because she didn't give you the oxygen of publicity by naming you”. In the online version of the Tel article, as I already mentioned, she was named.
But that isn’t the point: it’s all about bullying. “You tagged me, I reply to you. That's what we grown-up girls call ‘debating’. Try it sometime … If twitter's too much for you, try Club Penguin. My kids enjoyed that”. No engagement with the arguments: indeed, no attempt to find out what those arguments were. No real criticism. No listening and learning. Just a welter of patronising, bullying and abuse. Which Ms Mensch calls feminism.