I am so angry today. Apparently, women are supposed to be sex toys, and if they do or say the wrong thing (known as “boner-killing”) they should be punished by abuse of their sexual identity and agency, either by subtext (Leigh Sales is shrill = unsexy) or text (“die whore”). It’s not just twitter. It’s Grahame Morris on the radio. It’s calling Julia Gillard an old cow, or saying she should be kicked to death, or playing on the cliche that women are manipulative by pumping the Liar angle. The culture of loud public misogyny, boosted in part by nasty gender-based Gillard-bashing that goes unadmonished by LNP leaders, emboldens people to abuse and bully women, because they know that there are no consequences. They will no be disenfranchised or shut out. They will, at most, be given a slap on the wrist and a wry admonishment from someone who will tell them, “Mate, you can’t say stuff like that in public!” instead of “That is not OK, and we’re not interested in dealing with someone who thinks that way.” Let’s all say the second thing, whenever it’s required.