The Daily Parker

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Where are the feminists for May?

Why is a white, gay, male, naturalized American the only journalist I have come across saying Theresa May deserves a lot more credit for persisting in the face of unrelenting male hostility? Sullivan:

I don’t know how else to describe Theresa May’s grueling slog toward the least worst Brexit possible.

The awkward prime minister is still standing upright, though maybe not for much longer. In this respect, I’m surprised more feminists haven’t come to May’s defense. May’s bourgeois Toryism, like Margaret Thatcher’s, doubtless disqualifies her from any respect from the left. But her tenacity in the midst of male obloquy is emblematic of many themes American feminists focus on.

May, after all, is taking responsibility while her male colleagues posture and preen and complain or resign; she gets almost no credit for negotiating one of the more complex international deals in British history for two demoralizing years; she works harder than anyone else in her government; and the deal she has struck is almost certainly the only one the E.U. will ever accept. A woman, in other words, got the toughest job in government in decades, did the best that could be done, has been pilloried for it, but still plowed on, and even now, won’t surrender. Her pragmatism and resilience — along with remarkably good cheer in public — are a wonder to behold. I guess May’s feminism, like Thatcher’s, requires no labeling.

Yes. Brexit is pathologically stupid; yet May has to make it work. She'll probably be out of office by March, of course, leaving the hard work up to someone who hasn't got the tools to get it done. Oh, England.

Comments (2) -

  • David Harper

    11/20/2018 7:06:14 AM +00:00 |

    Andrew Sullivan exaggerates Theresa May's achievements.  Her current woes are entirely of her own making.  At the outset of the Brexit process, even before she delivered the Article 50 notification which began the two-year countdown, she adopted a hard-Brexit posture, stating that "no deal is better than a bad deal".  This was partly in an attempt to appease the pro-Brexit extremists in her own party, since she had campaigned for Remain during the referendum and she needed to convince them that she was committed to their cause.  It may even have been an attempt to cow the EU.  On both counts, she failed.

    Then, in a fit of hubris, she called a general election in May 2017, assuming that she would bolster her position in Parliament.  That went spectacularly wrong, and left her dependent on a handful of MPs from the reactionary DUP to even remain in power.  Given that the Irish border was going to prove such a critical part of the whole Brexit deal, and that the ultra-Unionist DUP would, almost by definition, oppose any solution that was acceptable to the Irish government, this was a huge tactical mistake.

    I'm no fan of Margaret Thatcher.  I lived through her time as Prime Minister, and I loathed much of what she did to Britain.  However, I'll allow her this: she would have handled Brexit better than Theresa May.  Actually, she would never have allowed it to happen in the first place, but that's a different matter.

  • The Daily Parker

    11/20/2018 4:00:20 PM +00:00 |

    Oh, I'm no fan of May either. I was just reposting Sullivan because May really does get a lot of crap from people who would never treat a man that way. I think she should be treated the same as any other Tory who's screwed up as badly as she has. John Major comes to mind. But I'm not really looking forward to Jeremy Corbyn at Number 10 either.

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