Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s wife set off a social media firestorm Tuesday, the eve of International Women’s Day, by suggesting that men should be celebrated too.
“As we mark International Women’s Day, let’s celebrate the boys and men in our lives who encourage us to be who we truly are, who treat girls & women with respect,” Sophie Gregoire Trudeau wrote on her Instagram account.
She posted a photo of herself and her husband -- who proudly declares himself a feminist -- showing them holding hands and gazing into each other’s eyes.
Are you ready to ignite change? This week, as we mark International Women’s Day, let’s celebrate the boys and men in our lives who encourage us to be who we truly are, who treat girls & women with respect, and who aren’t afraid to speak up in front of others. Take a picture holding hands with your male ally & share it on social media using the hashtag #TomorrowInHand. Together, we can create a movement that inspires more men to join the fight to build a better tomorrow with equal rights & opportunities for everyone… because #EqualityMatters. 🤝 Êtes-vous prêtes à faire des étincelles pour allumer un changement ? Cette semaine, à l’occasion de la Journée internationale des femmes, célébrons les garçons et les hommes qui nous encouragent à être qui nous sommes vraiment, qui traitent les filles et les femmes avec respect et qui n’ont pas peur de parler haut devant les autres. Prenez une photo main dans la main avec votre allié et diffusez-la dans les médias sociaux avec le mot-clic #DemainEnMains. Ensemble, nous pouvons susciter un mouvement qui incitera davantage d’hommes à lutter avec nous pour des lendemains meilleurs, l’égalité des droits et des chances pour tous … parce que l’#Égalitécompte.
Gregoire Trudeau urged women to post a photo with their male ally.
Joining in this way could help “create a movement that inspires more men to join the fight to build a better tomorrow with equal rights & opportunities for everyone... because #EqualityMatters,” she wrote.
Her post attracted plenty of blunt criticism.
“I’ve never had to have my hand held,” conservative MP Michelle Rempel tweeted. “Women’s day is about women, not men!!”
A woman from Vancouver added, “This is so problematic I don’t even know where to start.
anyone else see sophie trudeau's post about international women's day and celebrating our male allies? no. no no no.— nikki alex basset (@nikkialexbasset) March 7, 2017
“International women’s day is a day to celebrate intersectional feminism and acknowledge the strides women have taken for equality while simultaneously acknowledging the active misogyny women and women identified individuals encounter on a daily basis. It is NOT a day about men.”
Sophie Trudeau on FB rn calling to celebrate men on International Women's Day tomorrow. Liberals are weird.— Lara Witt (@Femmefeministe) March 7, 2017
Gregoire Trudeau seemed to take the criticism in stride, saying in a post Tuesday night, “Well, now we’re having a conversation!”
“Our goal is gender equality, and fighting for it is going to require men and women working together -- raising our boys and girls to make a difference, hand-in-hand. This is about recognising that we should be allies on this journey,” she said.
Sophie Trudeau: lets use international women's day to celebrate men— jessica (@yessicaa___) March 7, 2017