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May 20 2016

"Feminist" Justin Trudeau Elbows Female Member of Canadian Parliament

Charlotte Allen

I can't decide which is richer in layer upon layer of irony: Self-proclaimed feminist and liberal heartthrob Justin Trudeau's elbowing a female member of the Canadian Parliament--or the Gender Studies 101 reaction of another female member of Parliament  who witnessed the incident.

Here's the story, from the CBC:

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was accused of "manhandling" Opposition whip Gord Brown and elbowing NDP MP Ruth Ellen Brosseau in the House of Commons as MPs gathered for a vote on the government's assisted-dying bill Wednesday afternoon.

In video from the House, Trudeau is seen walking toward Brown in a crowd of MPs in the Commons aisle, taking his arm in an apparent effort to move Brown toward his seat. While doing so, he encountered Brosseau, who was also standing in the aisle and was seen physically reacting after the contact.

"I was trying to start the vote, the prime minister grabbed my arm. I immediately told the prime minister to let go of me — now," Brown said in a statement released later. "Immediately afterward, the prime minister went back down the aisle of the House to confront other members of opposition parties."

NDP House leader Peter Julian accused Trudeau of "manhandling" Brown, as MPs on all sides of the House shouted and Speaker Geoff Regan struggled to regain order. 

NDP MP Tracey Ramsey said the prime minister swore as he approached Brown and the opposition benches. "He said 'Get the bleep out of the way,'" she said, adding Trudeau "violently" grabbed Brown.

Then, as HeatStreet reports:

Brosseau’s colleague, Niki Ashton, said she was “ashamed” to witness the “deeply traumatic” incident, using language most American college students would find familiar.

“What I will say, if we apply a gendered lens, it is very important that young women in this space feel safe to come here and work here,” Ashton said. “[Trudeau] made us feel unsafe and we’re deeply troubled by the conduct of the prime minister of this country.”

Nothing like an elbow in the chest to make you feel "unsafe"!

Calling the Great White North incident "a testy conflagr-eh?-tion," HeatStreet writer Andrew Stiles continues:

The 44-year-old prime minister and self-professed feminist and trained boxer has become an object of lusty affection to American liberals who wish Barack Obama could run again and are tired of pretending to be excited about Hillary Clinton.

Stiles isn't kidding. Vogue writerJohn Powers got weak in the knees interviewing the Liberal Party hunk not long after his election in October 2015:

A fit six feet two, the onetime actor greets me at his office door and—no desk guy—leads us to the sofa to chat. He’s loosened and turned up his sleeves but not, alas, quite high enough to reveal the huge tattoo on his left arm: a Haida tribal raven that he got on his fortieth birthday (it encircles an older tattoo of the Earth, which dates to his 20s).

U.K. Independent writer Bethan MeKernan gushed that Trudeau was "the best Justin out of Canada since Bieber" and listed 19 reasons why "the world has fallen in love" with the man with the Haida raven tattoo.

And the U.K Guardian couldn't get enough of Trudeau's horn-tooting about his feminist credentials:

Trudeau, who last year unveiled a cabinet with an equal number of men and women “because it’s 2015”, spoke on Wednesday during the UN’s 60th session of the commission on the status of women.

“I am going to keep saying loud and clear that I am a feminist until it is met with a shrug,” Trudeau told diplomats, advocacy group representatives and the head of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.

It's notable that in a series of apologies after the elbowing incident, Trudeau seemed to be studiously avoiding both the above f-word and the one he used on the House floor. Maybe he was worried that the reaction might not exactly be a shrug.

 

 

 

 

 

 



Independent Women's Forum is an educational 501(c)(3) dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities. IWF is the sister organization of the Independent Women’s Voice.​
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