While the story of female suffrage is taught at school from a young age, few people today know the long and gruesome history of how men won the right to vote, says Neil Lyndon
There is a reason why our view of this history is as biased, one-sided and prejudiced as the account of the Eighth Route Army that was taught to Chinese children under Mao.
The reason is that the whole truth is extremely inconvenient. It conflicts with the dominant feminist narrative which portrays women as the victims of repressive men, from whom liberation and progress had to be wrested by militant uprising. The true history of votes for women, however, is not a story of sex war but of a continuous progress of electoral reform over a century from 1832-1928 in which women’s suffrage was only one element.
It is also true that, as a whole, that complete story does credit both to Britain and to men whose memory deserves our continuing honour, compassion and respect.
Listening to Emma Barnett and Co enthusiastically championing the Suffragettes and ‘votes for women’ remarkably there seemed to be no mention that millions of men didn’t have the vote either…..which kind of puts a spoke in the BBC narrative that not giving women the vote was a political ploy to keep them alone oppressed and in the kitchen.
The Representation of the People Act 1918 gave the vote to 8 million women and over 5 million men….5 million men whom the BBC seems to have pretty much forgotten today.
The whole BBC narrative is one of men suppressing women but ignores the fact that it had less to do with gender and more to do with economics, who worked, who had money and property and who, they thought, had a real stake in the country and thus should be allowed to vote….and keep them in power.
Barnett otherwise was on form as usual…just why we had Juliet Stevenson, lovey actor, on I’m not sure….Labour supporter, pro-immigration and pro-Remain.
There was also Tory Victoria Atkins who has fled Twitter due to the abuse she gets…which immediately made the BBC headlines. Barnett though berated her for being in a Tory Party propped up by the DUP [called ‘backward and unpleasant’ by Muslim Mishal Husain for its Christian beliefs…LOL]…because that is ‘an issue’. The DUP are, according to Barnett, ‘uncomfortable bedfellows’ due to their opposition to gay marriage and being anti-choice as Barnett put it….a cuddly bit of spin meaning anti-abortion. Does she say the same thing about Muslim or Catholic MPs? Does she berate the Pope who is equally against such issues.
Of course not…it is only ‘an issue’ because the DUP are ‘propping up’ the hated Tories and keeping Brexit on track. The mass murdering IRA the BBC has no problem with….nor with Corbyn who was vocal in his support for them…and indeed them for him it seems now.
Labour’s Jess Phillips received a much warmer welcome with no difficult questions. All a bit of a love in today. Despite a programme dedicated to women’s issues and examining the abuse female politicians get Barnett didn’t raise any questions about Corbyn, Momentum and Phillips’ life under that regime despite headlines like this from last year….
When Jess Phillips said that the misogyny she received from left-wing men was the “absolute worst” they quickly proved her point. Last week the Labour MP’s Twitter feed flowed with “men telling me I didn’t understand sexism, that I deserved it, that I was fat, ugly, that I was probably on my period”.