As winter has seized us with her long bony fingers this week, Friday has crept through the back door, like a welcome intruder with a warm apple crumble and some fluffy slippers. Welcome, friend!
Here’s what’s been happening in the world of women this week.
- First cab off the rank this week is our right to urinate in a hurry. Did you know that women spend 34 times longer queueing for toilets than men do? Of course you did, I’ve seen you in that line, making idle chit-chat with the 22-year-old on pingers in front of you, who instantly loves you because you remind her of her mum and your hair is so pretty. (To be fair, we used to be that 22-year-old, so we cut her some slack, and promise to follow her on Insta.) Enter: The Peequal – the semi-private (from the waist down) pedestal toilets that promise a 6-times-quicker peeing experience. We don’t have any in Australia yet but they’re starting to spring up in the UK, so it’s just a matter of time. We’re excited about the faster bathroom experience, but concerned that now we can’t text our bestie about how our date’s going without everyone knowing.
- Onto more serious news now, with the news that a staffer from Liberal-turned-independent Craig Kelly’s office has been arrested for allegedly indecently assaulting and inappropriately touching his female colleagues between 2014 and 2020. He faces 18 offences including seven counts of aggravated indecent assault relating to allegations made by three women and a teenage girl. Ever the class act, Craig Kelly has said he won’t fire chief of staff Frank Zumbo because he said he totes didn’t do it, so that’s all a mate needs to know. Now, Zumbo has been allowed out on bail and back to work, where he continues to work with three of the women who have made allegations against him. Just another way our justice system is telling women not to bother reporting sex crimes because their lives will be made unfairly difficult as a consequence, while the alleged perpetrator can do whatever the fuck he wants because his bros will protect him.
- While we’re talking about gross dudes full of privilege, we were gutted to hear Brittany Higgins was admitted to hospital late last week – “after months of sustained political pressure”, says her partner David Sharaz in a considered understatement. A brief of evidence on Brittany’s alleged rape is due to the ACT director of public prosecutions in the next few weeks, so we’ll stay tuned and hope justice is served, but in the meantime, we wish Brittany a speedy and complete recovery.
- But we should also spare a thought for poor LNP minister for the NDIS Linda Reynolds, whose office Brittany Higgins’ rape allegedly happened in. (You remember, the lady who showed us who she is when she called Brittany a “lying cow”?) The poor love shared her thoughts this week in Senate Estimates that Labor’s questioning over the incident put her in the hospital. She had previously stated that she was in hospital for a pre-existing heart condition, but now she’s claiming a bad case of having-to-face-tough-questions-about-her-handling-of-the-alleged-rape. Penny Wong, ever the deadset legend, asked Reynolds, “So, you’re the victim, not Ms Higgins?…Don’t blame us for the fact that we were required to ask you questions because of your failure to be upfront and transparent about key facts.” We don’t know how Reynolds responded to that because nobody gives a shit enough to report on anything further she has to say.
- I don’t care about golf but I do care about women doing kick-arse shit, so let’s all pull up our argyle socks and yell “fore” for 19-year-old Yuka Saso, who won the US Women’s Open this week – only the second teen in history to pull it off. Oh, and she’s the first player from the Philippines to ever win a golf major, which probably show that people in the Philippines have their priorities in the right place because honestly, snooooooze, amiright‽ But still, big golf clap to Yuka Saso.
- An actress called Meghan and a loose unit from the London had a baby. They gave her a weird name and the world lost its shit about it, claiming it was either adorable or bonkers. I tried to keep reading the news around that one, but it’s been hard so I thought I should say something.
- The salary stand-off between WAFL legend Tayla Harris and her club Carlton came to an end this week, with Carlton trading Tayla to Melbourne. One of the best female AFL players in the country, she’ll be on a base salary there of $28,000 – and the rest of her money will be made up for in promotional work. For reference, the highest paid dudes in AFL get over $1.5 million – and that’s without endorsements, etc. Carlton had previously refused to pay the amount Tayla was telling them she was worth, and a good amount of male sports writers tried to convince us that Tayla was a greedy-greedy-pig-girl for even implying she should get paid such an astronomical figure. Which is funny, because that amount is probably also less than most of those high-profile sports journos get paid – and they get to sit on their cans all day, while Tayla was out sweating her pits off, absorbing all sorts of sexist bullshit, and kicking big goals. And yes, I know the women’s game isn’t as big as the men’s game (yet), but I also know that when I look around at my local AFL club, where my 10-year-old son plays, the amount of female players has increased by several hundred percent in the past few years alone – and it’s trailblazers like Tayla Harris and Moana Hope that have inspired that change. So don’t shame her for asking to be paid a decent living wage for being a professional at her sport, while also affecting grassroots change around the country – watch her shine, pay her what she’s worth, and say thank you for the privilege.
- Finally, in the arts, Lorde excited us this week by teasing a new album called Solar Power – and showing us her arse with a hint of vulva (pictured, at top, just in case you missed it). The 24-year-old NZ muso shared the pic with the simple caption: “ARRIVING IN 2021 … PATIENCE IS A VIRTUE.” And although she told us in shouty caps, we forgive her and are now waiting with excited anticipation. In the meantime, we’ll just keep following her onion ring review Insta account @onionringsworldwide for interim news (and solid fried goods recommendations).
- And in late breaking news, swimming champ Maddie Groves has withdrawn from this month’s Olympic trials, citing “misogynistic perverts in sport” for her opt-out.“Let this be a lesson to all misogynistic perverts in sport and their boot lickers,” Maddie wrote on Twitter.
Let this be a lesson to all misogynistic perverts in sport and their boot lickers – You can no longer exploit young women and girls, body shame or medically gaslight them and then expect them to represent you so you can earn your annual bonus. Time’s UP https://t.co/XMQCRPjNzK
— Maddie Groves (@MaddieGroves_) June 9, 2021
“You can no longer exploit young women and girls, body shame or medically gaslight them and then expect them to represent you so you can earn your annual bonus. Time’s UP.”
And on Instagram, she added: “Make them pervs quake in fear from the number of people supporting a statement that threatens their existence.” We just know there’s going to be more to this story, so let’s stay tuned, but clearly Maddie is protesting some pretty seriously disgusting treatment of women in sport. It’s so shit that we are still having to have conversations like these, and that women have to give up their hopes and dreams just to escape the pressure and torment. I hope the dude/s involved are shitting their dacks right now.
Seen any great news for women? Send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org