Thursday, 18 August 2011

Should we interfere in the bigotry of others?


So the members of a club decide that they do not wish to admit women - or men for that matter. Should this be a legitimate place for intervention by the state or should such folk be left to molder in their own bigotry?

A mother-of-three has declared war on men-only workingmen’s clubs after being refused entry to a bar because she is a woman.

Having been denied access to the bar room at Sacriston Workingmen’s Club (WMC), in County Durham, Christine Oxley, who helps run neighbouring Witton Gilbert WMC, has vowed to pursue her one-woman campaign “as far as it takes”.

The 35-year-old has written to Sacriston WMC, contacted the Equality and Human Rights Commission, taken legal advice and is considering a court challenge.

Why go to such trouble to get access to somewhere full of people who don't want you to be there? It's not like there's a lack of choice of places to drink, play darts and gossip about the doings of the local village!

Or maybe these matters are more significant - if the sign said 'no dogs, no blacks, no Irish' would I be so definite in thinking it was OK?
Not sure but I do know that if women only gyms and swimming sessions are OK (and they are) then men only bars should be OK too.


SadButMadLad said...

She comes across well in the comments in the article you link to. :-)

Word verification: sperm!

Clarissa said...

The owners of private premises should be allowed to discriminate in whatever way they like. If they want to put a sign that says 'no dogs, no blacks, no Irish' in the window then let them. After all it is only their income they are affecting.

The flip side is, of course, that the public are free to say 'Actually, that person is a bigoted moron and we don't want to drink there'.

The free market will soon determine whether or not that place stays in business.

Angry Exile said...

What Clarissa says, though there can occasionally be some interesting little conflicts. There's a very select, invitation only, gentlemen's club here in Melbourne called The Melbourne Club (I didn't say it was imaginative), and by tradition the Governors-General of Australia are given an honorary membership.That worked fine until two or three years ago when Quentin Bryce became the first female GG. I don't know what they did to solve it - possibly talked reciprocal arrangements with the ladies only Lyceum Club next door, I have no idea - but I never heard that they either made her an honorary bloke first or gave up and went co-ed. And if nobody's demanding the same of the Lyceum then why should they?