Poor old Mark Field. Just another hard-working Conservative MP, keeping his head down, voting against protection for human rights, welfare and the environment, squeaking by quietly and struggling to make ends meet on eighty grand a year. Then another hard day at the coal face (working his way through a gourmet dinner at the Mansion House speech – sigh) gets disrupted by some shrieking harridan banging on about the environment or some other old cobblers.
Now, Mark’s a man’s man, a man of action and, naturally, after a bit of veal and a couple of glasses of wine to get the blood flowing, he senses a threat. This woman in a red evening dress could be armed. Dangerous. Could be wearing a bomb vest (they do very some very chic bomb vests for women these days, you know. Very flattering under a dress) and so he does what any man would do, grabs her by the neck and frogmarches her out of the building. Doesn’t ask for a medal or anything.
Does our heroic MP get the recognition that he deserves for fending off this liberal menace? He does not. He gets suspended from his job and gets a pretty rough ride on social media. Even those people that stand up for him aren’t excused the flak.
(Sigh.) You know what? I was trying to write this in the ironic voice of an outraged local Conservative party chairman waving a rolled-up Daily Mail in anger and… I just can’t.
Look at the longer footage of the incident. This apology about acting on instinct is clearly bullshit. He’s not scared. He’s cross. He’s indignant that his important dinner full of important, swinging-dick economists and bankers has been disrupted by some hemp-wearing, do-gooder, save-the-bunnies fucking lesbian and he’s going to teach her a lesson she won’t forget soon.
Then his party colleagues defend his actions,
Johnny Mercer weighs in with “He panicked, he’s not trained in restraint and arrest, and if you think this is ‘serious violence’, you may need to recalibrate your sensitivities. Calm down, move on, and be thankful this wasn’t worse.” Well, Johnny, I’ll start recalibrating my sensitivities about violence towards women, then shall I? You’re right, it could have been worse. I mean, it’s not like he gave her the slapping she so clearly warranted.
Bob Stewart has an even better “It’s PC gone mad” defence: “How the heck, as a man, how do you hold a woman that is not in an inappropriate way?” Stewart asked the BBC’s World at One programme
“You can’t hold her by the wrist, you can’t hold her by the waist, you can’t hold her by lower down, you can’t hold her by the chest,” he said. “The only way you can really control someone in those circumstances is possibly by the collar. But she wasn’t wearing a collar.
“So that’s why his hand was probably round her neck. If he’d have touched her anywhere else he’d have probably been deemed highly inappropriate and he was trying to stop something.”
Here’s a clue, fuckwit. Don’t physically restrain anyone who isn’t a threat to you. If you need a few tips on how to “handle” the opposite sex, try this classic “Rock test” https://medium.com/@annevictoriaclark/the-rock-test-a-hack-for-men-who-dont-want-to-be-accused-of-sexual-harassment-73c45e0b49af
Would Mark Field have treated Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson in the same manner? One suspects that he would not.
Should protesters have been allowed to invade the Mansion House speech? Like the milkshake thrown at Nigel Farage, it’s venturing on to shaky ground to say that (let’s call it ‘non-injurious violence’ in his case) law-breaking against people with whom we disagree can be justified. There’s a clear power imbalance here, though. The reason that milkshakes are thrown and premises invaded is that our democracy has become unbalanced and any voice that disagrees with the narrative of the wealthy and influential is ignored, trivialised, shut down.
I’m sure that the ensuing media debate will go on and on but it
shows us this. It was a man acting on instinct but not the instinct of fear.
This was the angry, atavistic reaction of our political leaders who are angry
at having their voices challenged, of commoners disturbing their cosy club. Of
a man who believes that he’s always more right than a woman and that he has the
right to treat her as he sees fit when his peace is disturbed. If it shows us anything,
it’s that these are not men who deserve to be running our country.