Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland bar's Rita Ora post sparks sexism storm

By Victoria Leonard

A Belfast bar has been accused of "slut shaming" to promote a club night.

Filthy McNasty's was slated by a Sinn Fein councillor for using what she claimed was "sexist, misogynistic and objectifying" language about pop singer Rita Ora to promote tonight's Gypsy Lounge soiree.

Mid and East Antrim representative Patrice Hardy called for the club to remove the advert after it used Ora's picture and named the event "Rita Ora Less Of It Party! Ya Aul Hussy!"

The venue also billed the evening as featuring a "Rita Ora dartboard".

The nightclub accompanied the promotion with a social media post, which stated: "Rita Ora as many of you will know let the side down this week with some mischievous tweets with Conor McGregor.

"This Friday in honour of those who value relationships and not being a meddling nuisance in others, we are throwing a small shindig in the Gypsy Lounge. Say 'Rita F*** Away Aff Round Your Own Door!' for cheaplist entry at the door! #RitaYaAulHussy."

The comments relate to a photo taken earlier this week of singer Ora and mixed martial arts fighter McGregor, who is in a relationship and has a baby son. Ora captioned the picture with the words: "Date night."

Ms Hardy took exception to Filthy McNasty's promotional efforts, urging others on Twitter to join her in complaining about the advert. Yesterday Cllr Hardy said that "those engaging in this type of derogatory and judgemental anti-women behaviour need to be called out." She added: "There is no place in our society for sexism, misogyny or any form of discrimination."

A spokesman for Filthy McNasty's said Friday night's event would be going forward and would not be renamed, but would not now feature a Rita Ora dart board.

"The recent post regarding Rita Ora was absolutely not intended to cause any offence or ill feeling, if the post caused anybody to feel this way then we would like to issue sincere apologies," he stated.

"The recent headlines regarding Rita Ora's tweets inspired the post and it was only intended as some current/topical humour.

"Overall the post seemed to be well received with over 1,000 comments applauding the intended humour and four or five the latter, the event itself is actually a bit of a farce/joke in that there won't be anything different or extra happening from our regular trading.

"We felt the words used by the councillor on social media were quite extreme and a little sensationalising, as the word 'slut' was never mentioned and made us a little uncomfortable.

"However, again we would apologise to any of Patrice's constituents who were unhappy with the post. We had investigated potential wording for the artwork and the term 'hussy' was defined as 'a woman acting immorally,' which seemed to be the overwhelming majority of opinion by people of both sex."

Rita Ora's representatives did not respond to requests for comment.

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