Climate change is a big issue for any government, meaning Canada's environmental minister, Catherine McKenna, has a lot on her plate. And while McKenna is mainly in charge of the environment, she is also passionate about gender equality.
But she ran into some trouble this week when she tried to combine the two ideas together. In a tweet, Mckenna said that climate change is worse for women and now she is being bashed for it.
Our government understands climate change disproportionally affects women. For #GenderEqualityWeek this week, Canada reaffirms its commitment to ensuring women are at the table and part of the solution. We know #EveryoneBenefits when we work together. pic.twitter.com/mVC8rQ73Q8— Catherine McKenna 🇨🇦 (@cathmckenna) 26 September 2018
Her tweet wasn't actually that bad. She simply said that they understand climate change affects women more, and therefore it's important to have women at the table and as part of the solution. Canadians, however, aren't buying it.
Instead, they are bashing McKenna for trying to make everything about gender and play some kind of victim card with the environment, both in responses on Twitter and even on Reddit.
Good grief. You're now making climate change a gender issue? #entropy is our strength.— Geoff Schaeffer (@jshaver61) 26 September 2018
This was @cathmckenna's clumsy attempt to link climate change to gender equality, in congruence with the Liberal's all-new 'Gender Equality Week'. Nothing more, nothing less. It's way easier for them than tackling real work. #platitudes— Geoff Schaeffer (@jshaver61) 26 September 2018
Beyond the people pushing back against McKenna's claims, there are also some more creative Canadians who are now making up ridiculous ways that climate change is worse for women.
One person pointed out that global warming makes menopause that much worse, while another jokingly suggested that since women sometimes have longer hair, they suffer more in hurricane winds and rain.
Since we typically have longer hair, when it rains due to hurricanes, we end up carrying more weight than mean on our heads. This in turn strains our neck muscles, and we get migraines. Also, all those rainy days make it harder to sunbathe. How is this not obvious??? /s— Tanya Lea (@TanyaMLea) 26 September 2018
To be fair to McKenna, I fully support gender equality and think it's a noble cause. Also, she didn't make up this idea all on her own. A United Nations statement on climate change said that "Women commonly face higher risks and greater burdens from the impacts of climate change in situations of poverty, and the majority of the world’s poor are women." None the less, Canadians aren't buying it.
McKenna's tweet was made as part of Gender Equality Week, a new initiative by the Liberal Government to support equal rights for women in Canada and the world.