Harassed because she is feminist and lesbian: an elected official files a complaint

This Wednesday, March 3, 2021, Emmanuelle Pierre-Marie, mayor of the 12th arrondissement of Paris, shared on her twitter account a letter of execrable violence towards her and her colleague Alice Coffin. The elected official filed a complaint.

Hidden behind anonymous letters or social media posts, individuals allow themselves to insult and harass women politicians. A daily for these elected officials, who no longer hesitate to publicly denounce their actions. This Wednesday, March 3, 2021, Emmanuelle Pierre-Marie, mayor of the 12th arrondissement of Paris and claimed feminist, shared a filthy letter targeting her, as well as Alice Coffin, openly lesbian feminist author, ex-journalist and member of her team. Sexism, lesbophobia, insults… The package for the perfect virilist stalker is complete.

Contacted by phone, Emmanuelle Pierre-Marie explains to us that it was her duty to file a complaint and to bring this letter to the attention of the public, with a view to denouncing serious acts. “This kind of situation is intolerable and will no longer be tolerated”, she says. You should know that every day, the mayor receives many letters, some of which show real aggressiveness. Sexism, homophobia and even eco-bashing … Emmanuelle Pierre-Marie is served.

The elected representative reminds us: there are very few women mayors in France, between 16% and 17% only, and for municipalities with more than 100,000 inhabitants, the percentage is even lower. On this quantitative basis, Emmanuelle Pierre-Marie explains “That there is an ambient discourse in which we allow ourselves things with female mayors that we do not allow ourselves with men. This can be seen in the turns of phrase, in their violence, or even in the lack of cordiality ”. But when it goes beyond a certain framework, on social networks or in writings like here, the mayor speaks.

"A pressure in the eyes"

Emmanuelle Pierre-Marie evokes another case which sums up the pressure on women politicians. In December 2020, his heels while planting a tree had earned him sexist criticism and even a misogynist article in Valeurs Actuelles, which had the headline "In Paris, the green mayor of the 12th arrondissement plants a tree in stiletto heels and makes a fool of herself".

"We gauge a woman on how she behaves, talks, dresses, denounces the elected. I was judged for planting a tree in heels. But when the men are in dress shoes and suits, that's okay! I think women are under the gaze, the judgments, and it comes from everyone. We are asked to be more royalist than the king each time: we must be irreproachable in all areas ”, she continues. Made to discourage, these attacks instead fuel the determination of elected feminists for more equality. “We have to arm ourselves and undergo these pressures on a daily basis, for my part, since I have been mayor, says Emmanuelle Pierre-Marie. It confirms to me that as a politician I have to do it, otherwise who will? ", she adds. The complaint thus has symbolic significance and will allow abused women to see the accessibility of this act. "It will resonate", says our interlocutor.

Since the publication of her tweet, the elected official has been widely supported in her approach. She can count on her political colleagues, from the arrondissement to the city of Paris, who echo this letter. For the mayor “Things are changing”. Indeed, Alice Coffin and Raphaëlle Rémy-Leleu, the green elected members of the Paris Council, had been seriously attacked in June 2020 for having denounced the links between the elected PS Christiphe Girard and the writer Gabriel Matzneff, but none of the political supporters expected, outside of EELV, was not heard. Today he is present. "With all the movements that are going on now and the denunciations, I hope I have laid one more stone and that we will not go back", concludes the mayor.