Dear Right Honourable Bill English, Prime Minister of New Zealand,
We’ve been pondering your views on feminism, especially since we recently asked you whether you’d had the chance to look up the definition of a word that’s been around since the 1800s and you told us you hadn’t.
Here’s what you said in our interview:
“No. But I consider it’s a way of treating all women with respect, understanding the range of potential, and working with them as I do with my lovely spouse every day, every week. A very accomplished woman.”
We’re touched by your obvious affection for your wife, but we’re not sure what she has to do with what feminism means. You could ask her. She’s very accomplished, as you say. Maybe she can show you how to use Google.
We’re also perplexed as to how not making it a priority to discover the definition of this word that you – a man with an honours degree in English Literature – have apparently been stumped by for the past 55 years demonstrates “treating all women with respect”. Scratching our heads here, Prime Minister. We’ve been scratching them so hard we might make it through to our brains soon.
To put you out of your misery, we’ve looked up the definition of feminism for you. Not that we needed to. We’ve known what it means since basically forever. As the Oxford English Dictionary explains:
“The advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes.”
That wasn’t so hard, was it? No mention of “kill all men” at all.
All that’s left now is for you to decide if you believe that women deserve social, political and economic equality.
Your move, Prime Minister.