Controversial feminist and author Clementine Ford has once again courted community anger after she tweeted over the weekend that “the coronavirus isn’t killing men fast enough”.
Ford, of course, was a regular columnist for Nine’s Sydney Morning Herald and The Age but quit last year after being chastened by senior management for offensive articles including a social media post where she called Scott Morrison a “fucking disgrace”.
On Saturday, Ford tweeted that she’d hoped more men would die from CV-19 in response to her view that women were taking on extra work during the coronavirus pandemic, as they manage childcare, their households, and their own work. Ford has since deleted the offending posts.
It’s believed that the City of Melbourne had threatened to take away a $20,0000 grant they’d given Ford as part of a program to support artists through the pandemic which was the trigger for Ford’s retraction.
The 39-year-old had caused similar outrage in 2018 when she tweeted “All men must die”. This led to a number of boycotts and protests at her speaking engagements.
City of Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp led the chorus of complaints over Ford’s latest outburst, describing them as “deliberately divisive”.
“I found these comments offensive and distasteful and I agree with the sentiment of outrage expressed by many members of our community,” Capp said.
Initially, Ford stood by the comment, tweeting: “Christ alfkn Mighty, men love to screech about snowflakes and triggered feminists and women not being able to take a joke and they crumble at the first sign of a hyperbolic tweet that doesn’t place them as gods at the centre of the universe. Ding dongs, all of them.”
However, by Sunday Ford had apologised for the tweet in a lengthy thread, saying her comments had been “poorly judged” and she was sorry for anyone hurt by her words and had “reconsidered her flippancy”.
Former senator and broadcaster Derryn Hinch led the media backlash of Ford’s comments.
“Take this on board: A woman who tweeted ‘Honestly, the Corona virus is not killing men fast enough’ has recently been given a ratepayer- funded literary grant by the Melbourne City Council. It must be rescinded,” Hinch Tweeted.
3AW presenter Tom Elliott said Ford’s comments had put the feminist movement back a century.
“She is the worst sort of feminist – she puts her cause backwards,” Elliott told his listeners. “Most women I know would have nothing to do with her. As for men? Why would we? After all, she wants us dead.”
And it appears Ford’s comments were finding few supports amongst the twittersphere.
“Yeah, not so fast girl. It wasn’t flippant it was thirsty and banal. And it’s done some serious damage,” one user tweeted.
Another added: “This woman doesn’t admit fault easily… clearly she got a tap on the shoulder.”
“It is amazing how hard you jumped off when you knew that 20k grant was in jeopardy. Pathetic,” one woman commented.
While another posted: “Is this an attempt at some sort of apology? You can’t even get that right!”
However, Ford did find some supporters.
“Many who need you love your courage. They feel power and comfort from seeing you talk to men the way men talk to us,” one supporter wrote.
“That’s an intentionally narrow tightrope to walk, and people who never applaud your daily performances will always be quick to yell at your corpse after a fall,” posted another.
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