Ever since the days of Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton to today with Glorias Steinem and Allred, feminism is something that has been necessary to help position the accomplishments of women and see them rewarded justly for what they have done.
Good times, right?
These three knobs (pictured above, left to right) are Ed Miliband, Harriet Harman, and Nick Clegg. Ed is leader of the UK’s Labor Party (or Labour, if you pardon the silent and snotty “u”). Harriet is leader of the British House of Commons. And Nick is Deputy British Prime Minister and “Lord President of the Council” because he needed a more overblown title on his business card.
They all support women’s rights, which is why they are wearing the same tee shirt. The problem, here is that they aren’t as interested in (or even aware of) the struggles of the women who actually made the clothes they’re wearing.
According to the UK’s Daily Mail, the three Brit politicians were posing for an Elle magazine shoot for an article on feminism (see pictured above). The shirts, with the thought “This is what a feminist looks like” emblazoned across them, really got people thinking.
They weren’t thinking about the sentiment, though; they wanted to find more dirt on this troika.
Turns out the shirts about feminism were made in a Mauritis sweatshop by women making 62 pence an hour (that’s less than a whole buck)! The tropical locale is an island in the Indian Ocean. While the scenery is pretty for the pretentious, local sweatshop machinists are known to sleep 16 to a room.
(Photo Credit: Craig Hibbert, Daily Mail)
At one factory visited by The Mail on Sunday, a female worker told us: ‘How can this T-shirt be a symbol of feminism when we do not see ourselves as feminists? We see ourselves as trapped.’
An official from factory owner Compagnie Mauricienne de Textile (CMT) told us he ‘would not be happy’ if the women left the work camp during the week in case they turned up for work ‘hungover’.
This is a huge #PRFail story across the pond because of the people wearing them — in addition to the talking heads seen above, the shirts have also been seen on celebs like Benedict Cumberbatch, Tinie Tempah and Eddie Izzard.
However, the stink surrounding these shirts’ origins have people using them as dust rags. More reason for concern:
Fayzal Ally Beegun, president of the International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers Union, told the paper: “The workers in this factory are treated very poorly and the fact that politicians in England are making a statement using these sweatshop t-shirts is appalling.”
Your move, Queen Elizabeth.