— ABC Q&A (@QandA) July 11, 2016
If you missed the final 10 minutes of last night’s episode of Q&A, you might be forgiven for thinking Australia’s fastest growing trending topic was a polite forum for discussing the vital functions of female reproductive organs.
Instead, thanks to the intelligence, empathy and quick wit of Guardian Australia columnist Van Badham, #myovariesmademe has become a vital sounding board for Australians who will no longer tolerate the kind of myopic, harmful views on Australia’s domestic violence epidemic that are perpetrated by misogynist apologists like Badham’s fellow Q&A panellist and broadcaster Steve Price.
You can watch a video of their exchange above, or keep reading to recap below.
When I get upset at violence against women it must be that #myovariesmademe
— Maggie Raven (@MargxRaven) July 11, 2016
— Kelly Bell (@kellyannebell) July 11, 2016
During an appearance on Q&A last night, Price was asked to respond first to a question posed by audience member and anti-family violence campaigner Tarang Chawla, whose sister Nikita was tragically murdered by her husband last year at just 23-years-old. Chawla prefaced his question by referring to recent comments made by AFL commentator Sam Newman, who used his considerable platform on Channel Nine to defend Eddie McGuire and his controversial “jokes” about the “drowning” of sports journalist, Caroline Wilson.
Chawla then asked the panel, “How will politicians in the media play a better role in bringing about long overdue cultural shifts so tragedies like what happened to my family are not normalised?”
— G i G i (@gigicd86) July 11, 2016
— Auxit (@nqldgirl) July 12, 2016
Naturally missing the point of the question entirely, Price responded with another defence of McGuire, who he said had “apologised immediately” for his remarks that when made “in context” were simply “a bunch of blokes laughing about things that they shouldn’t have laughed about… I think far too much was then made of [a joke made on a football show].”
“What you see as a bunch of jokes made by blokes,” began Badham in response, “I see as a woman who is part of a social world where violence is” – which is as much as Badham could say before Price interrupted and began to repeatedly talk over her, presumably before Badham could reiterate Chawla’s earlier sentiments that “male violence is the leading cause of death and disability for women under 45-years-old in Australia.”
I want to do well in my life, relationships and career. I’m driven to better myself, both personally and professionally #myovariesmademe
— Jamie (@mixtapehero) July 12, 2016
I’ll stand with my fellow “hysterical” women any day of the week #myovariesmademe
— Annabelle Jarrett (@aejarrett) July 11, 2016
Continuing to talk over Badham, Price would then go on to inadvertently prove her point entirely. “This man has given us an extremely upsetting story about something that’s happened,” said Badham, “And you are defending yourself in the context where we have to have a conversation about cultural attitudes that treat women differently.”
“Just because you’re a woman,” said Price, “You’re not the only person who can get upset about this,” a comment that provoked audible shock from the audience, including from a visibly awed Chawla.
— Robin Elizabeth (@RobinElizabee) July 12, 2016
#MyOvariesMadeMe strong, compassionate, resilient, gentle and tenacious.
But not hysterical.
— Mariam Veiszadeh (@MariamVeiszadeh) July 12, 2016
“You are proving my point very excellently about the attitudes that create this kind of problem,” responded Badham, before she began to describe the need to dismantle binary gender constructs that relegate women to a lower social status when “on the receiving end is the ludicrous proportion of women who do endure violence.”
“I think you’re just being hysterical”, said Price, invoking the archaic, discredited and once-common medical diagnosis attributed solely to women who were considered to have a “tendency to cause trouble” thanks to symptoms identifiable in “almost any woman, and some men”.
#myovariesmademe far more prone to injury and/or death at the hands of someone who knows me. OMG, that is funny. That’s hysterically funny.
— Haylee MUA (@Haylee_MUA) July 12, 2016
If I had a $1 for every time #myovariesmademe hysterical I’d have $0.75
— Danielle Grant (@danielletgrant) July 12, 2016
And while his wilfully chauvinist remarks may have temporarily rendered Badham silent while literally in the midst of explaining how attitudes like his propagate a culture that normalises gendered violence, they would later go on to fuel one of the finest clap-backs in Q&A history and perhaps spurn on the defining hashtag of the year: “It is probably my ovaries making me do it, Steve.”
What remains to be seen is whether or not Price’s colleagues, Waleed Aly and Carrie Bickmore on Channel 10’s The Project where he is a regular panellist, see fit to address Price’s extremely questionable attitudes toward Australia’s women on tonight’s program.
In the interim, behold:
— lyn anderson (@onyerbikesLNP) July 12, 2016
#myovariesmademe particularly intelligent, strong, & intolerant of male privilege bullshit.
— Dr Annetta Mallon (@AnnettaMallon) July 12, 2016
Tried to be cool and calm in the face of systemic sexism but couldn’t manage. Now I Understand why, #myovariesmademe
— Simone Kramer (@Simbri) July 12, 2016
#MyOvariesMadeMe strive to live in a world where we end violence against all women
— Annabel Lee (@missleighton) July 12, 2016
— Miss Jane (@missabbeyjane) July 12, 2016
— Van Badham (@vanbadham) July 11, 2016
Tile image: Twitter
Cover image: Q&A