Did you hear about the slapping scandal? You may well have done – but I am not talking about the one involving Sunderland football manager David Moyes.
This was one in which someone tweeted that they wanted to “slap the hell out of Jeremy Kyle” following his appearance on an edition of Loose Women. It was reported in the Metro.
Even though I can’t imagine this was said in a way that was ever meant to be funny, it was about a man, so clearly it was OK.
What about the other slapping scandal? No, still not the one about David Moyes.
This one was reported in the Liverpool Echo a few weeks ago. Everton star Romelu Lukaku is alleged to have said, “Someone needs to come and slap the s*** out of him!” during an “argument” about basketball with teammate Morgan Schneiderlin.
He even apparently went on to say, “This guy needs to be killed right now, I swear!” Again, there was no scandal.
Or maybe you’ve heard of the punching scandal, in which Coleen Nolan quipped in the Big Brother house a few months ago to Angie Best: “I’m going to smash your face in, in a moment.” Days later she justified her disagreement with Calum Best on the delightful grounds that it was apparently “Because I wanna punch his Mum’s face in.”
These coarse words related to a woman having her face smashed in. So, surely there was a scandal there? Of course not – because, presumably, a woman was doing the talking.
Yet, change the dynamics to a man talking about a woman and what happens? All hell breaks loose.
Joking all the way through an interview with the BBC’s Vicki Sparks, David Moyes told the chuckling reporter: “You still might get a slap even though you are a woman”.
For uttering those few words, so many column inches have been dedicated to denouncing this terrible crime. Did all those who commented actually watch the tiny clip themselves? If so, they would have seen the bantering nature of the pair’s chat is completely lost in a literal translation.
The Moyes ‘scandal’ has also been branded a sexist incident. It probably is a sexist incident, but not in the way most people are portraying it. David Moyes’ actual comments appear to be the exact opposite of sexist, it seems to me. If in doubt, read what he said again. It appears that he may actually have had equality very much on his mind.
However, more importantly, let’s consider the fact that the outcry seems to have only been about a man’s comments when they involve a woman – not a man on a man; not a woman on a woman; and certainly not a woman on a man. So, where’s the real sexism?
If there is nothing sexist in this, I assume all these other incidents will now attract the wrath of the very same people calling for David Moyes’ head. Unless, of course, we drop everything and accept that it was banter all round after all.
The whole atmosphere of a public trial – complete with baying mobs and a thirst for a public “execution” – is the sinister undertone in cases like these. This is what we should be more worried about.
Equally worrying has perhaps been the outcry about domestic violence. If anyone seriously thinks that it is a good idea to link Moyes’s comment to anything to do with actual violence they are, quite frankly, mad. How on earth does this help real victims of violence? Does anyone really believe David Moyes was really advocating domestic violence? Of course not. Surely people are capable of distinguishing between his comments and real, serious cases of domestic violence.
I realise that this may be a very unfashionable line to pursue but I have always stood up for unfashionable causes.
The problem with political correctness is that so many people seem to get (very publicly) on these bandwagons that those who aren’t outraged either feel the need to say nothing or are very reticent about getting involved and saying anything.
Yet all of us could find ourselves breaking some politically correct rule – even if we didn’t know it. Spare a thought for those men who go out of their way to be seen to be on the side of women who can’t avoid the politically correct minefield that leads to these kinds of outcries. Remember when David Cameron – who was obsessed with getting more women everywhere whatever the cost – was pilloried for his “Calm down dear” comment.
So, we need to be very careful indeed about keeping quiet. We men need to stick together with the vast majority of women who are just as appalled at how the feminist zealots have taken over common sense, and how fewer and fewer people are prepared to stand up to them.
A senior Minister (who shall remain nameless) once told me that he absolutely believed that women should be treated differently – and better – than men and that this is what his Department would do. It was one of the few times in my life when I have actually been lost for words. Yet it is precisely for this reason we need to find our voices.
Maybe this whole David Moyes incident does highlight sexism. People just might need to look more closely at the facts behind the screeching headlines and the morally superior militant feminists with their politically correct male friends to see the real sexism in front of their very eyes.
- Philip Davies is Conservative MP for Shipley