Ah, right-wing men. What would women do without them? For they are always there, knight-like, to defend equality and call out sexism whenever it suits their political purposes.
The latest example of their uniquely smug deployment of fairweather feminism is in the discovery of some tweets sent by Labour’s candidate in the Stoke-on-Trent Central by-election, Gareth Snell.
Snell has been branded a sexist by the right-leaning Westminster gossipers Guido Fawkes for some derogatory comments he has tweeted about women. “Speccy blonde girl is f**king annoying,” said one tweet about an Apprentice candidate. “Janet-Street Porter is a polished turd. Shiny and Shit,” read another. “EMA doesn’t give help to Uni students you stupid woman,” came a rant mid-Question Time.
Not a good look for Snell, who has already been rumbled for some particularly sweary anti-Brexit tweets (he called it a “massive pile of shit”). The tweets Guido has picked out compound this air of teenage boyish political aggression, and are indeed insulting to the women.
But, oh god, the smugness. “Quite a bit more sexist than David Davis…” Guido concludes. “Those Labour types who boarded the outrage bus about David Davis yesterday have gone oddly quiet…”
“Of course sexism isn’t the prerogative of the left,” Ukip’s Suzanne Evans added. “But the fact they claim to be the epitome of political correctness does rather rankle when they let women down, as they so frequently do.”
This is a politician from a party long represented by Nigel Farage – who calls paid maternity leave “lunacy” – and who has worked in the European Parliament alongside former Ukip MEP Godfrey Bloom, who called a female audience “sluts” and complained that women don’t “clean behind the fridge enough”, and Ukip MEP Roger Helmer who claimed “the victim surely shares a part of the responsibility”, when writing about rape.
Your mole has had it up to its whiskers with figures on the right who dish out charges of sexism in gleeful attempts to call out left-wing hypocrisy and promote their own side.
A similar thing happened when most of Theresa May’s mainstream right-wing media backers threw up their arms in outrage over Tory MP Andrea Leadsom’s comments about her then opponent in the Tory leadership contest not being a mother. Hardly any of them piped up when Brexit Secretary David Davis went in for an unwanted embrace with Diane Abbott last week, and then sent some nasty texts about her appearance.
We bleeding heart lefties may be fair game for accusations of hypocrisy at times, but perhaps the right need to look at themselves first.