A note to Owain Gardener: the behaviour of your political culture to women

Earlier this evening while I was discussing my feelings about the very fragile political situation in the country in which I live, I was discussing Jeremy Corbyn. As so frequently happens when you discuss Mr.Corbyn, one of his supporters decided they had the right to police me and behaved in the disturbing way we have all come to recognise from this cult. You. First, while quoting my tweets to your followers demanded to know if I had intended it as a DM, because how dare I say this publicly, apparently it was beyond you to understand that in a modern democracy people discuss the leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition and have every right to do so.

You knew what you were doing, and when you continued to do so, I explained to you that this was within the pattern of disturbing behaviour we have all come to expect from his followers. On this occasion you continued to quote my tweets in the hope of soliciting your followerss to assist you in policing mentions of Mr.Corbyn on the internet, and presumably harassing me.

I explained to you your attention was unwanted and unpleasant. Someone else intervened at your behaviour and you continued to pretend you did not know that this was disturbing behaviour, demonstrating you believe your political affliliation gives you the right to solicit harrassment of women online. It doesn’t. You then went onto tell other people, including people I have previously had to block for the same reason, that the problem was I did not like answering question.

Actually the problem was very much your behaviour. The problem is very much a disturbing culture which encourages abuse of women to prevent examination and discussion of a leader of a political party, and it is not acceptable behaviour from you or anyone else. Far from being unwilling to answer questions I was absolutely clear with you that your behaviour was a problem, is a problem and is a problem that is symptomatic of an online culture which relies heavily on such behaviour and which has resulted in threats and intimidation of women including the recent leadership challenger Angela Eagle. So I’m putting this here.

When you take it upon yourself to attempt to solicit pile ons of women, when you believe your political affiliation gives you the right to behave this way it is disturbing you are demonstrating something that is deeply deeply problematic. Something the Labour Party is going to have take action on.. The medium you use does not make this ciltural norm acceptable and if you cannot accept a boundary from women and cannot function on a platform where people may discuss the political party you support, I suggest you deal with it in a better way and learn to moderate your behaviour.

While I appreciate the demonstration of you then trying to obtain validation of the acceptability of this behaviour, as a generous demonstration of my point about this culture, I would like you to moderate your behaviour to other women in future. If you cannot function politically without doing this, I dont really know what you should do. But this woman doesnt tolerate that behaviour and nor does the women who had to intervene on my behalf as you attempted to maintain denial of your own behaviour.

We are all just a bit bored and just a bit tired of the misogyny of you and your culture in attempting to drive women offline and squash discussion which is essentially in a healthy political culture. I am sure you won’t mind me discussing your inability to cope with people discussing Labour on the internet, your inability to accept a boundary from a woman, or your attempto police mentions of Mr.Corbyn using this platform, given you spent so much time trying to prevent me discussing politics in a democracy. I’m going to leave this here as a reminder for you that we live in 2016 and not only are you on a platform which you share with women but they will use that platform to discuss Her Majesty’s Opposition. THose women are voters. Potential Labour voters. Your disturbing behaviour is damaging to the Labour brand and it is about time Labour took action to eal with the culture you exemplify.


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