A good woman is hard to find! It wasn’t always like that.
Gone are the days when ‘good women‘ were synonymous with ‘bear children, cook, clean, sew and dig worms.’ Those women, still needed to be courted. Fine compliments, a flirty smile, a certain look – within the boundaries of good taste. How else was a man supposed to land his catch? ‘Telepathy, dear Watson!’
Germany. A beautiful young journalist attends an FDP event(Free Democratic Party) in an upscale hotel. A long night becomes early morning, she’s standing at the bar. The FDP Deputy Chairman, Rainer Brüderle, intoxicated and enthralled by her beauty, imparts a few compliments, but only one has made it into the hall of fame: “Sie können ein Dirndl auch ausfüllen.”- you could fill a dirndl blouse/skirt/dress.
To fill/ wear a dirndl successfully, you need adequately sized breasts; big ones. What happened next can be described in a term common to most English speakers; he ‘crashed and burned.’ Now, one year later, the journalist has written an article in der Stern, accusing the politician of sexism. Mr Brüderle remains tight-lipped while his colleagues defend him vehemently in the media, the last one being Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger. She said this: “If I could wear a dirndl, and it looks good on me, where is the sexism in that! Let’s leave the church in the village.” Nothing to see here, move along. Is she correct?
Sexism is discrimination defined by attitudes, conditions and behaviour that promotes stereotyping based on gender.’
A penny has two sides: What would she have done if the 67 year old Mr Brüderle was a young attractive politician more her age, with a better come-on line? Would she have smiled shyly? Maybe a soft laugh with a wag of the finger! Hmm!
Off with his head, cries the opposition, in unison with Germany’s ‘emancipation brigade.’ And echoes of ‘in America he would be finished.’ Luckily, we’re not in America, where people’s lives are ruined when the fantasy addicted populace discovers they’re only human, having sex, babies, affairs and divorces, cigarettes and the occasional joint – “Well I’ll be a monkey’s uncle.”
Mr Brüderle, whose party is suffering an ‘on again off again’ love affair with the voting public, may not be someone who elicits sympathy by women, especially young ones, but a few choice lines to a beauty is no sexism. The journalist was in no way hindered from doing her job, neither did anyone disrespect her, as far as the record shows. A man paid her a compliment (that could have been better), which she didn’t like, or want – that is fine – but howling sexism is a very low blow; it is safe to assume she spoke to, and received compliments from other men during the course of ‘the party,’ which ran into the wee hours. If she felt disrespected by Mr Brüderle, she could have told him directly, but she and der Stern chose to make a meal of it. A ‘real woman‘ would have, without hesitation, given Mr Brüderle the smack-down right there, and forcefully, she wouldn’t hide behind the trousers at der Stern Magazine – ‘good women‘ are hard to find back there.
Febuary 6th. German Author Martina Arnold has added her voice to the debate. Her commentary is in English, and it’s bursting with laughter. http://wortanwort.de/how-to-fill-up-a-dirndl-properly/