While most coronavirus-related headlines bring disappointing news about new infections and deaths, every once and a while, we get a respite from the constant gloom and doom.
On Monday, that brief reprieve came courtesy of Femen, the infamous international feminist group that has a very specific – and memorable – MO: Its members pose topless, often with their ‘message’ scrawled sloppily painted across their chests.
As the coronavirus spreads across the world, it appears the ‘Women’s Rights’ campaigners – who have never set foot in Saudi Arabia, as far as we are aware, preferring to protest only in relatively open western countries – have tweaked their methods slightly: Armed with rubber gloves, purple smoke and exposed breasts, the ‘Femen’ went out to symbolically cleanse Paris streets of the “patriarchy virus”, before being shooed away by the police.
The performance was timed to coincide with International Women’s Day on Sunday, which, as several twitter wits noted, happened to fall on the “shortest day of the year, the only day with 23 hours in it thanks to the beginning of Daylight Saving Time (which is now officially sexist).”
Some 40 protesters wearing plastic coveralls, rubber gloves and protective glasses – but nothing on their chests bar slogans in accordance with their whole schtick – mobbed the Paris’ Place de la Concorde.
Chanting feminist slogans, they fired purple smoke sticks and doused the ground using portable sprayers to wash away the patriarchy virus as they said they were more interested in fighting the “epidemic” of violence against women (for context: violent crimes against women across the world are at their lowest levels in history).
But we’re glad to see the femen are finally doing their part to help inject a bit of levity into the unceasing torrent of misery.