Coming from a female’s perspective, I cannot adequately answer the following question. But I can take it with a grain of salt and chuckle. So, what would you do if you were a male president of an organization or, let’s say, a country and a group of topless women came to protest?
The Independent reports that President Putin “laughed off” the protest, and I can only wonder if they meant that literally. He was reported as jokingly stating that “he liked what he had seen” while also taking care of the serious matter of the protest at hand. What a dog. Of course he would say that he liked what he had seen. Topless women? Really.
What gets me is that the protest was a women’s rights group. This is the reason why people don’t like women’s rights because they immediately think of radical, liberal women who burn bras or just don’t wear them at all. This particular group in Russia, named Femen, has “staged protests against Russia’s detention of the feminist punk band Pussy Riot around Europe.”
Allegedly, the feminist group “stripped to the waist and shouted slogans calling the Russian leader a ‘dictator’ before being covered up and bundled away by security men.” The whole scene just seems absolutely ludicrous to me. As a female, I don’t really understand what stripping down to the waist would really do. You aren’t really proving a point other than the fact that you are very comfortable in your own skin.
Plus, the fact that Putin just brushed it all off as though it was some sort of joke doesn’t make me feel any better about the feminist movement. Putin did comment on the matter that he was probably otherwise distracted because he says, “I did not catch what they were shouting, I did not even see if they were blonds, brunettes or chestnut-haired … I don’t see anything terrible in (the protest), though I think … it is better to be dressed if one wants to discuss political matters.” I agree Putin, I agree wholeheartedly. Ladies, keep your shirts on.
As far as the reasoning behind the protest, I wasn’t quite able to dig up enough information to understand it. German Chancellor Angela Merkel did argue that the women had a right to protest, but other than recognizing their right, there wasn’t enough information to really break down why they followed Putin to Germany.
Initially, I thought it was funny that Putin laughed off this group of women, and I thought it was absurd for the women to have protested topless.
However, now I don’t really know if I respect Putin’s reaction of laughing it off. There is worse he could have done, but with his further comments about the protesters he obviously did not respect them as people. It was only until the Chancellor made a comment about the women. After all, Merkel was the only female perspective the original article featured.
Putin probably could have treated the situation with a little more class, but at the same time the women involved in the protest didn’t really leave him much room.
I think everyone in this scenario could have done better. Clothes could have been kept on and Putin could have kept his eyes where they should have been. But maybe in the end, that’s all just wishful thinking.