SUZANNE HARRINGTON: Bono should have been man enough to refuse ‘woman of year’ award

I AM outraged. Horrified and disgusted. Appalled and let down by the direction in which things are heading, writes Suzanne Harrington

But enough about Toblerlones. And, no, this isn’t about Donald sodding Trump, either, because it’s only Monday and we are already all sick to death of him. The squirrel-headed buffoon makes George W Bush seem like a safe pair of hands. Enough! We are sick to the teeth of America eating itself feet first. Go away, modern Roman Empire, and get on with your decline quietly. We all have rage-and-disgust fatigue, and feel so desperately sorry for all those Americans who didn’t vote for him. As Rolling Stone journalist Matt Taibbi tweeted: “Nothing like the Oval Office for treating narcissistic personality disorder.”

We have all been so distracted by the horrors that will soon emanate from the White House that a more localised horror has slipped under the radar — or maybe it was just me, Toblerone-blinded, who missed it. Bono was made ‘woman of the year’ by Glamour magazine. Worse, he accepted it, instead of smiling wryly at such a tragic stunt and saying “no thanks, I couldn’t possibly”. You know, because he’s not a woman, and there are quite a few actual women — around 3.5bn — to choose from. But, no. Being a bit of a tragic stunt himself, he took it.

Last year, Glamour magazine appointed Caitlin Jenner its ‘woman of the year’. This is not me being transphobic. “Call Me Caitlin” is not remotely representative of trans people — she is right wing and ultra-privileged, inside an elite Hollywood bubble, her “struggle” hardly embodies the day-to-day realities of ordinary transgendered citizens. Why did Glamour pick her? Why did it pick Bono? What is wrong with it?

Caitlin Jenner
Caitlin Jenner

As for the United Nations picking Wonder Woman — a cartoon lady in basque and hotpants — as their honorary ambassador for the empowerment of women and girls….. were they high? This is so eyeball-meltingly inappropriate, so grossly infantilising and offensively stupid, it could have been an idea straight from the office of the president elect of the United States. Don’t get me wrong, I like Wonder Woman — fighting for your rights, in her satin tights; I have a poster of her somewhere, and a mug. But she’s hardly an image – sexualised, semi-nude — that successfully translates to regions where women and girls could do with her intervention, is she?

Places where women have trouble with FGM, child marriage, sexual slavery, abusive patriarchy? Send in Wonder Woman! Oh, wait, she’s a cartoon. Never mind, send in Bono. Send in Caitlin Jenner.

What is wrong with us that we cannot bear to see actual women representing actual women? That women are still viewed as non-valid, either as decorative gold diggers or mad harpies? America has just shown, us in shocking 3D, that a super-qualified woman is worth less than a non-qualified man. This absolutely sucks.


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