I read over the weekend that a pub in Nottingham has decided to start holding women only nights. That’s right – not a single man will be permitted entry onto the premises.
And that even includes the staff. Which is going to result in the ladies who frequent the Playwright on these nights having to go elsewhere for food – because the pub’s chef is a man. Do the people who run this place harbour the impression women don’t eat?
Apparently, they’re doing it because they think it’ll make women safer – if not hungrier. This blog is of the opinion it’s an utterly stupid idea which could actually put women in more danger. You see, because they can’t eat anything, they’re going to end up drunk more quickly. So they’ll have to order less alcohol, which will lose the venue money.
You’ll either have to eat earlier, which gives you less time in this sort of women’s sanctuary they have in mind. Or you’ll have to go and get something from a chip shop or the Chinese takeaway on your way home – by which point, you’re probably inebriated and not in the safe space anymore.
They’ve really not thought this through, have they? They’re going to make less money on these nights due to having no food to sell. They’re giving women a poorer service simply due to the fact they’re women – something which would result in howls of outrage in any other context. And they’re also assuming that it’s only men capable of spiking a drink – or of the current disturbing crime of needle spiking.
But what really worries me about this plan is it feeds the disturbing idea that all men are inherently dangerous and not to be trusted. As the father of two sons who is trying to raise them to have a deep respect for women – something fostered into me by my own mother – these kinds of messages don’t help.
Now, I’m not saying us men are perfect by any means. There are undeniably some creeps in our midst – heck, I spend a fair amount of time writing about one or two of them on this blog. They deserve to be called out and their feet held to the fire, without a doubt.
But preaching the idea that men are not to be trusted is an incredibly dangerous thing to do – and it will backfire. If you push this far enough, you’re going to end up with men who refuse to get involved with women.
Restricting a pub to just women a few nights a week obviously won’t lead to that. But it’s the start of a very slippery slope – and I’m not sure anyone has really thought about the consequences…