When Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took office in 2015, he did it to the dulcet screeches of thousands of swooning Canadian feminists. But now they’re wondering if the honeymoon is over.
He’d earned it. After all, the good-looking, Canadian version of Barack Obama had, by then, already declared himself a “feminist,” telling his legions of fans that they shouldn’t be “afraid of the word.” Immediately after taking office, he set up a gender-equal cabinet, not because his female underlings had earned a place in high office, but because, like many modern feminists, he’d distilled “gender equality” to mere equality of numbers.
He named a woman chief of staff, he gave sweeping speeches to the United Nations about aboriginal women’s rights. He “co-operated with Vox” on a Ryan Gosling-style “Hey Girl” meme. And feminists papered the walls of their Women’s Studies departments with his wrinkle-free visage and kissed his sweet paper lips goodbye when they took off to protest the wage gap.
But nothing truly wonderful can last forever, and this week, the influential Canadian media outlet MacLeans declared Justin Trudeau a “fake feminist” and a gender equality fraud.
Apparently, according to MacLeans, while Trudeau has been winning their hearts in public, he’s been waging a quiet war against everything feminists hold dear in private. His first offense: putting Canadian economic stability over the whims of social justice warriors. His further offenses: not giving in to feminist demands.
“‘Feminist’ Justin Trudeau delivers a deeply un-feminist first budget,” wailed “women’s rights blog” Rabble after Trudeau had the nerve to increase funding to infrastructure and construction, where employment is 88% male, instead of a more “female-focused” profession. Trudeau refused, they said, to “drill down” to the “intersections and injustices” that define female inequality, though they didn’t quite define exactly what that meant.
He also, apparently, refused to force every other Canadian political party to run women—quietly killing a bill that would enforce a “less than 10%” gender disparity in candidates for public office. It doesn’t matter that the effort was probably impossible, or that the bill had no chance to pass. Trudeau clearly can’t be bothered with real women.
He also killed a proposal for the “mandatory adoption of gender-based analysis” —it would have required that every bill through Canadian Parliament, whether to name a post office, appoint a mounted patrol or declare war, it would have to pass feminist muster. To make up for it, Trudeau gave the Status of Women office an extra $3 million. But the Status of Women complained that, while that sounded like a lot, it was still only .02% of federal spending and a “feminist prime minister needs to put his money where his mouth is.”
By which they mean, in their hands.
He’s also refused to entertain the idea of universal child care (though he does seem to offer a comprehensive child care option himself), limited the amount of money allocated to fight sexual violence to just under $90 million, and hasn’t cut down on sexual harassment in Parliament (though he did apologize for that time he elbowed a female colleague).
The poor guy may have only himself to blame, however. He should know by now that feminists aren’t looking so much for equality as they are for Trudeau to meet every one of their outrageous, shrieking demands—which change as often as the definition of feminism.
Thankfully, he still has several years left to acquiesce to their demands.