Oxford University apologizes for asking female cleaner to do her job on International Women’s Day

Oxford University apologizes for asking female cleaner to do her job on International Women’s Day

Here’s the entirety of online culture in a single tweet. Offense is taken when almost certainly none was intended, then amplified by idiots eager to use it to signal their progressive virtue. It’s an almost perfect illustration of Bill Maher’s point a week ago about how social media and big media can inflate fake controversies at will.


I say “almost perfect” because, in Maher’s ideal example, it only takes a handful of tenderhearts followed by the right people in media to get the ball rolling on the outrage du jour. This tweet, though, is north of 20,000 retweets. A little googling reveals that there’s enough buzz around it to have pushed it into the online platform of every major British news outlet.


And so the burning question: By what right does an employer ask an employee to perform her duties when it conflicts with wokeness?


I can’t tell if she witnessed the fact that security ordered the woman to clean or if she’s assuming that from their proximity. To me it looks they’re each in their own little bubbles, having nothing to do with each other. (Why would security be in charge of janitorial services?) For all we know from the photo, the cleaner was out with instructions to wash away any chalkings she saw and happened to be busy with this one when the pic was snapped. How … un-woke of her not to have left it alone.


Anyone can fart out a bad take that ends up being circulated by, um, 20,000 people. Here’s the real sin, though:


A cleaner shouldn’t have been asked to clean? Or the school should have asked a male cleaner to do it, which would have set off a different round of hand-wringing over the symbolism? Or chalkings celebrating International Women’s Day shouldn’t be cleaned, period?


No matter. What matters is repentance and a promise to go and sin no more:


It can’t be that people honestly believe liberal Oxford University has it in for women, so much so that they’d rush out a janitor to wipe away a chalking specifically celebrating IWD — and that they’d purposely choose a woman to do it to boot, just to maximize the embarrassment. Imagine the intensity of the misogyny one would need to feel to arrange a slight that petty, which was only noticed and publicized through happenstance. This is a school that recently announced it would give women more time than men on math and computer science exams in the name of boosting their success in STEM fields, and now it’s being accused of this. There’s no benefit of the doubt in virtue-signaling.