Emma Barnett, Digital Media editor at the Daily Telegraph, was tidying up her apartment and noticed the above tag on her boyfriend’s pants. Right under the typical washing instructions is the all-caps message, “–OR– GIVE IT TO YOUR WOMAN” followed by, “IT’S HER JOB.” The pants are from British discount brand Madhouse.
Barnett was, understandably, shocked, finding the message particularly offensive because it didn’t even have the decency to be splashed across a t-shirt or some such prominent place. She writes: “This was a hidden message – or rather an order, intended to encourage women to reassume their once their ‘proper place’ (in the home) and young men to maintain the expectations of their grandfathers.” She tweeted the image, and after the first wave of support and outrage, she was met with an impenetrable wall of “lighten up”s and “can’t you take a joke?”s.
Barnett reached out to the company, who eventually claimed to have no clue how the message got there. Addressing the suggestion that she’s given Madhouse unnecessary publicity, she concludes, “Some sexist remarks are funny; but some really aren’t. The individuals and brands behind the offensive ones deserve outing and shaming. And just remember – the people pointing out these inappropriate comments can still have a perfectly decent sense of humour.”
We think stuff like this is indeed publicity bait–like a certain UK company’s rape shirt. We also think it’s lame as shit.
As for you…