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Life can be ugly, even for Beyoncé

By Nuala McKeever

Published 29/01/2013


What was the academic Mary Beard thinking? She goes on Question Time to talk about immigration and ends up being abused on a variety of websites, afterwards on the basis of her appearance.

What did she expect? Didn't she know that if you want to escape opprobrium nowadays you have to look like, oh, for example, Beyoncé? You have to be young, gorgeous, well-dressed, wealthy and talented. And then they won't be out to get you.

Oh, sorry, what's that you say? Beyoncé probably lip-synched when she sang at Obama's inauguration and she's being hounded for it online? Oh well, that's my theory out the window then.

What do women have to do, not to be denigrated? Sadly, it's other women doing a lot of the denigrating. On Channel 4 news the other night, two female politicians - one Tory, one Labour - discussed the need to stop over-sexualisation of young children. They essentially agreed with each other but Diane Abbott seemed incapable of admitting this. She chose instead to mock what the Tory woman said, as if it would kill her street cred to be seen agreeing with a slightly posh, white Tory.

If you disagree with someone's view, grand. But if you agree, don't create division just to score points. It always backfires in the end and it really is ugly.

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