Can a Panda be a Yoo-Man Girl?

Imma leave this one up to my readers: Why is this wrong? Or is it not wrong? Please enter your verdict and the reasoning behind it below:

Outrage as BBC chooses panda as 2011 female face

LONDON (Reuters) – The BBC has ignited its second sexism spat in the space of a month by choosing a panda as one of its 12 female faces of the year.

Last week, it was criticised for choosing its annual BBC Sports Personality of the Year from an entirely male shortlist.
The decision to include the face of Tian Tian (Sweetie), a female panda whose arrival at Edinburgh Zoo on loan from China generated huge publicity earlier this month, has provoked a storm of angry tweets, including one from former deputy Prime Minister John Prescott.

To me, this may depend on context and background to be found deeper in the article, so do have a look.

…a quarter of the female faces this year were chosen for their involvement in marriages.

They include Prince William’s new sister-in-law Pippa Middleton, South African Charlene Wittstock who married Prince Albert of Monaco and Spanish billionaire the Duchess of Alba, 85, who tied the knot with a civil servant 24 years her junior.

And the author of the piece noted: “I didn’t choose the BBC women faces of the year subjects — just wrote them. Two black eyes from wife though. Pandamonium!”

All I can say is that I hope Amanda does not catch me writing this blog post about Pandas!

And there’s more.

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3 Responses to Can a Panda be a Yoo-Man Girl?

  1. I’m always a little torn about stuff like this.

    On the one hand, who cares? These types of year-end “best of” lists are usually trivial fluff that people phone in between Christmas and the New Year so they can take a vacation from serious work. To some extent, I don’t think that we should take this sort of thing too seriously.

    On the other hand, women do awesome stuff all the time, and every time one of these types of lists comes out it only goes to show just how little the contributions of women are valued in our society. So it IS indicative of a general societal indifference to women and a general lack of respect for us, and that matters.

    It’s also worth noting that these seemingly trivial bullshit lists are read by a lot more people than many of the things that are really intended to be taken seriously. It’s easy to say that people who complain about a list like this are making a big deal over something trivial, but it’s not, not really.

    I think the problem is that people in general are too inclined to think of pop culture as frivolous or silly and ignore the effect that these things have in shaping the way people think. It also doesn’t help that, while this sort of thing actually does influence people, it’s difficult to quantify the effects of any particular instance of it.

  2. StevoR says:

    Imma leave this one up to my readers: Why is this wrong? Or is it not wrong

    Well, here goes :

    It would be okay if there were other animals involved too from both sexes – a male billy goat or blue whale, or say Chook the Adelaide zoo’s lyre bird that died recently and was semi-famous for mimicking machinery.

    But if you have a list of all human individuals being credited as prominent or representative of whatever and then you include a single panda as the token female because its female then .. yeah. Not cool. Wrong in fact.

    Because its sorta implying a woman may be a panda, famous only for looks and reluctance to breed and the connotations of that are .. pretty durn sexist really!

    Women should be recognised more – a couple of names I’d like to suggest here for this year are Emily Lakdawalla for running the awesome planetary society blog, exoplanet hunters Sara Seager and Debra (spelling?) Fischer for contributions to science and culture and Australia’s Prime Minister Julia Gillard who got her carbon tax legislation through our parlt. finally moving us a small step forward (maybe) on the whole Human Induced Rapid Global Overheating (HIRGO) issue.

    Then for this year there’s also Rebecca Watson, the Skepchick – for uncovering a very nasty side to the atheist movement and Richard Dawkins and raising awareness plus contributing to the skeptical movement. Naomi Oreskes for fighting HIRGO contrarians along with Pinker a satellite technician & academic who has contradicted Lord Monckton’s claims about what she claimed and plenty more.

  3. StevoR says:

    @ ^ “.. along with Pinker a satellite technician & academic who has contradicted Lord Monckton’s claims .. “

    That’s the Professor Rachel T. Pinker, University of Maryland mentioned here :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9K74fzNAUq4

    at the 11 minute 45 second mark for those who may be wondering.

    Monckton himself gives her a glowing if rather gender-confused recommendation.

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