A friend posted “Men are showing up to the Wing and women are pissed” (New York Post) to Facebook. Highlights:
The Wing was supposed to be the ultimate sanctuary for women … “There’s usually at least one [man] whenever I visit,” says Kaitlin Phillips, 29, a member in New York for the past two years. “It’s bizarre to choose to occupy a space women specifically wanted for themselves. Classic patriarchal entitlement complex.”
The Wing, which started with one location in New York in 2016 and has grown to nine locations in seven cities, including a new international outpost in London, never had a membership policy, because, reps say, they didn’t think they’d need one. Instead, they simply billed themselves as a women’s co-working space and social club.
This lack of official paperwork garnered the attention of the New York City Commission on Human Rights, which in 2018 opened an investigation into the company. The Wing’s large membership — more than 11,000 worldwide, according to reps — meant it couldn’t pass as a “social club,” and therefore can’t discriminate based on gender. This, coupled with a lawsuit brought by a 53-year-old man earlier this year claiming gender discrimination, led the Wing to formally adopt a membership policy: “The Wing is a space designed for women with a women’s-focused mission. Members and guests are welcome regardless of their perceived gender or gender identity. Recognizing that gender identity is not always consistent with someone’s sex assigned at birth, we do not ask members or guests to self-identify.”
“It’s just annoying,” says Caitlin White, a 31-year-old West Hollywood member who sees at least one man working in the space each day. “Why do men need to be there? Why can’t they respect the spirit of the place? Men have to have everything.”
“Maybe make it one day a week that men are allowed?” White says. “There has to be a legal way to work this out that still respects the space.”
This prompted a response:
I can understand women wanting to have a space without men. What I never understood were male-only clubs. Why would men want a space without women?
Of course, I immediately attacked the responder for his gender binarism and proposed starting “Club 58, where everyone is welcome” (link to 58 gender ID possibilities). But his question remains. When does it make sense to have an all-male group? Some ideas so far…
What about a support group for recovery from the referenced “Classic patriarchal entitlement complex”? Wouldn’t it make sense to limit that to members of the “patriarchy” who suffer from this disorder?
Based on “‘I messed up big-time’: Former Miss Kentucky who worked as a teacher admits exchanging lewd selfies with 15-year-old” (Daily Mail), a group for males who have been similarly victimized. How could someone identifying as a woman understand the pain, suffering, and long-term psychological damage endured by a 15-year-old viewing pictures of Miss Kentucky’s upper body?
Readers: What else? (other than obvious male-only medical issue groups!)
- “No Man’s Land” (official publication of the Wing)