Danielle Paradis is so tired of divisive debates that accomplish nothing but alienating men and women from one another.
Most of the feminist-sphere had a collective groan when Munk debates announced a panel of four upper-middle class white ladies. There’s a certain irony to this debate. Every year the Munk debate is hosted by the University of Toronto Munk School. People buy tickets to see ‘important’ people debate ‘important’ topics. The line-up of speakers has included Henry Kissinger and Tony Blair in the past. These debates have also been criticised for their exclusion of women. To remedy this, the Munk School evidently decided that a panel of four women arguing about men will resolve this. This is an immediate failure of the Bechdel Test, and really points to the obliviousness of the organizers. I would never be interested in a panel of four men discussing the end of women and I am equally disinterested in a panel of women discussing the end of men.
Be it resolved men are obsolete. I say that to myself in a low and rumbly voice.
This whole event is about sitting in a room with famous people and listening to them talk over one another. It’s a blatant attempt to create pseudo-intellectual debate topics. It is real life click-bait. All around us we have an obvious publicity-rouser for Rosin and another annoying discussion by the White Feminist Industrial Complex. As Salon writer Roxane Gay said on Twitter “A savvy person might arrange a discussion rather than debate including women and men to talk about how far we’ve come and what’s left to do”. There’s no need to stop at just cis-men and cis-women either we have the potential to open up the discussion to the entire gender spectrum—something that people would actually like to be a part of rather than more divisive nonsense by four women laughably out-of-touch. You see even if we have the misguided notion that we despise one gender expression or another we’re all still here.
I’m watching ppl get tattooed on a timed reality TV competition. One got a tat on his butt crack. Still a better idea than that Munk Debate.
— Lauren Kelley (@lauren_kelley) September 17, 2013
I don’t want men to be over. I don’t want women to be over. While we probably still have some work to do around freeing ourselves of antiquated notions of what men do/ do not do, these four women talking isn’t going to accomplish anything. What they are trying to accomplish is a continual pitting of men and women against one another in a way that is more like a no-holds barred football match. What they do for seat sales, let’s not do in our real world.
Photo Credit: Munk Debates