Chris Gayle has been dealt severe sanctions for his immature antics on a live television broadcast in which he propositioned the female host. A $10,000 fine, a future ban potentially worth millions, and international public shaming; for the crime of flirting. All of this on top of being publically rejected in an interview heard round the world.
To be sure, the precise scenario made the incident unprofessional and inappropriate, and not even those ‘defending’ him have actually done so. It is near universally agreed that he is ‘immature’, ‘arrogant’, ‘sexist’, ‘sleazy’, or any number of degrading terms you’ve heard in the last few days. The debate is not whether or not he was right – again, nobody is defending him – but rather, if the event required becoming the social issue of the summer. Was this indicative of the entire civilisation? Was our culture no better than the 1950s? For some, even that comparison was insufficiently primeval, instead invoking various species of our pre-human ancestors.
At a glance the entire fallout seems more than a little disproportionate. That was my initial reaction, but I’ve had a rethink.
Society has come so far in regards to sexism and we are now at a precipice: the world envisaged by our feminist forbears is ready to be seized. The radicals and political lesbians of feminism in the 1970’s have been striving for this very moment for so long. Many haven’t lived to see it come to fruition.
For those unaware, political lesbians are probably not what you would assume. They are not merely politically active lesbians; lesbians fighting for gay rights, social acceptance or sexual liberation. In truth, they are not lesbians at all by the current understanding of the term. They are not same-sex attracted women. No. Political lesbians are women for whom lesbianism is a conscious political act devoid of any innate physical attraction. It is an intellectual position they adopted after discovering the truth. The truth that our entire society has been constructed by men with the express purpose of oppressing women, and that sex was obviously one of their most powerful weapons. A weapon of which women should take sole ownership. Some women – even those happily married with children – upon discovering the truth of their lifelong oppression would abandon their former lives, sexual preference – and husband and children, if present – to fight the oppressive patriarchy that had made them subordinate second class citizens. Lesbianism became the preferred outlet for intimate human contact.
One of the goals of these early radical feminists, and their modern day descendants, was to redefine ‘consent’ in regards to acceptable male-female interactions. Under their new rules, any interaction not clearly initiated by the woman would become harassment or, if sexual in nature, rape. This definition would allow for ‘normal’ heterosexual relations, for those unwilling to sexually join their political lesbian sistren, but only if the encounter was 100% on the woman’s terms. There would be no room for seduction, pursual, or even for a man to make the first move. That’s rape – even if the women felt she agreed to and enjoyed the encounter.
We are now so close to that ideal. The line between severe social consequences and a million dollar fallout for asking a girl for a drink, and criminal charges for taking the encounter to the next level, is thin, fuzzy and faint. We are almost there.
Now is not the time to get complacent, not when our feminist utopia is on the verge of unveiling itself, and especially not when we have such vocal public and media support driving the wheels of progress.
And I mean, really, who wants to live in a world where men can go around indiscriminately talking to women without prior formal authorisation? It’s certainly not what Muhammad would have stood for, were he a woman.