I was lamenting last week that all the news about women was kind of disappointing, so I’m thrilled to bring you some kick-arse moments for women this week. Sure, quite a few of those moments are tearing some farkwit dudes a new one, but everyone needs a hobby. Let’s jump in:
- If you want to comment on a woman’s weight (hot tip: you don’t), you’d do well to not do it about Aussie basketball legend Liz Cambage. One putz, Connecticut Sun head coach Curt Miller, made that mistake when commentating a game she was playing in for the Las Vegas Aces against his team, and Liz was having none of it. “So to the coach of Connecticut — I’m sorry, little sir man, I do not know your name. But the next time you try to call out a referee trying to get a call being like, ‘C’mon, she’s 300 pounds’, I’m going to need you to get it right baby,” Cambage said. “And next time you try to disrespect me, remember, I’m 235 (pounds). It might seem like 300 pounds to your little ass. I’m 235, baby. I’m weighing 235 pounds (105kg) and I’m very proud of being a big bitch, big body, big benz, baby,” the 203cm athlete said. “So don’t ever try to disrespect me or another woman in the league. Anyway to that little man — whole little, tiny, like where is you? — stop trying to project your insecurities baby. Pick up the phone, call the psych, because you projecting some bullshit right now.” The WNBA has issued an apology for the comment, suspended tiny little sir man for one game, and fined him $10,000. Awwwww wahhhhhhhh.
- You know, you think you understand just how incredible US gymnast Simone Biles is, and then she goes and trumps herself yet again. This week, she managed a feat only ever achieved by men in competition: the Yurchenko double pike vault. (Don’t pretend you know what that is – we didn’t either.) If there’s one reason to hope against hope that the Tokyo Olympics go ahead, it’s this amazing athlete. For what it’s worth, she blitzed the competition at the US Classic in Indianapolis on Saturday night but you knew that already. Check her out in all her glory here.
- One of our favourite women Jacinda Ardern has created history in New Zealand by appointing Cindy Kiro as the nation’s next Governor-General, to commence in October. Why is that news? Well, although she’s the fourth woman to hold that position (which makes NZ three ahead of us – *shocking*), she is the first Māori woman to take the role. Kiro says she wants to inspire others to follow in her footsteps. “I really hope it is seen as a positive thing, you can reach the very top, and remember not only Māori and a woman, but pōhara, very poor, from a humble background,” she told reporters. “It truly is incredible standing here with this opportunity, and I hope young Māori girls, no matter where they come from in life, and all girls, take some inspiration from that.” I wonder how long it will be before we see an Indigenous woman in that role in Australia – shall we start holding our breath now?
- Australian of the Year Grace Tame has taken aim at Amanda Stoker, the recently appointed Assistant Minister for Women, telling the Betoota Advocate podcast she is “not an adequate person for the job”. Stoker has publicly defended contender for Worst Woman in Australia Bettina Arndt, who famously sympathised with Tame’s abuser in a shitshow of an interview, which we won’t share here. For her part, Stoker has shown her soft side by previously calling Tame’s critical comments “utter nonsense”. Women haven’t been this well represented in Australia since Tony Abbott appointed himself Minister for Women. God, New Zealand must be laughing their arses off right now.
- While we’re talking about Grace Tame, also well worth a mention are the unsurprisingly tone-deaf comments our great Prime Minister shared with her after her Australia Day speech. Also in the Betoota Advocate podcast, Tame said that after she shared her story of sexual abuse survival and spoke passionately about advocating for victims of grooming and sexual abuse in Australia, Scott Morrison – clearly struggling without Jenny there to tell him what to say – made a right dick of himself. “Do you know what he said to me right after I finished that speech and we’re in front of a wall of media?” Tame said, speaking on the podcast. “I shit you not, he leant over and right in my ear he goes: ‘Well, gee, I bet it felt good to get that out’.” And if you can’t see what’s wrong with that comment, I can’t help you.
- Big news in Samoa this week, with PM-elect Fiame Naomi Mata’afa – the first woman in the nation’s history to hold that job – holding her own swearing in ceremony, after she was locked out of her original one by sore loser and 22-year predecessor Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi. (Bet Donald Trump is KICKING himself right now for not thinking to change the locks last November.) Mata’afa held the ceremony in a makeshift tent, proving that she doesn’t give a fuck about the pomp and ceremony, she just wants to get shit done.
- Big news in NSW this week, with affirmative consent becoming law. What does that mean? Well, basically, those accused of rape can no longer use the “but I thought her silence meant she was into it” defence. Each party has to do or say something that actively indicates that they want to be having the sex. And sure, it won’t take away the he said-she said problem with rape accusations, but it does require each party to be clear with one another – hopefully providing incentive for important discussions, and also meaning those that are super drunk or unconscious are not capable of consenting, ever. Given that a shocking 3% of rape complaints made to NSW police end in a conviction (and that’s guaranteed to be the tiny tip of a very big iceberg when you count unreported assaults), something has to be done. This is a good start.
- The Senate committee handed down a damning report about the handling of Christine Holgate’s departure from Australia Post this week, and recommended Scott Morrison apologise to her for “denying her the legal principles of procedural fairness and natural justice”over his appalling handling of Cartierwatch-gate. Holgate says she would “graciously accept” an apology, should it be forthcoming (she’d also like $700,000 plus legal costs please), but her phone is yet to ring.
- Naomi Osaka put her foot down for mental health this week, saying she wouldn’t be attending mandatory press conferences after her games at the French Open. “I’ve often felt that people have no regard for athletes’ mental health and this rings true whenever I see a press conference or partake in one,” she tweeted. “We’re often sat there and asked questions that we’ve been asked multiple times before or asked questions that bring doubt into our minds and I’m just not going to subject myself to people that doubt me.” Fair enough. Osaka said she expects to be fined “a considerable amount” by Roland Garros, but she’s happy to pay it, and hopes they use her money to support mental health charity.
Seen any great news for women? Send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org