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A List of Luxury Reads

I have never seen the word tampon used so often as I have the last two days on social media; the Tampon Tax debate has been filling my twitter feed. As an outsider to VAT, the whole concept is confusing, and my only direct run in with it was when border control tried to make me pay £80 to collect a box of clothes I’d had since 12th grade that my mom had lovingly shipped from New York City.

Rupi Kaur period photo

via Rupi Kaur

My knowledge, however, is sound enough to realise that taxing tampons as a luxury item would actually be funny if it weren’t true. I’ve enjoyed spending my day reading the sarcastic take downs and irony laden articles about it. Here’s a list of the posts you should read for both information and humour.

  1. Now, I’m as big on crocodile meat as the next Tory, but if I really consider things through, I’d probably say a super-plus on a period is marginally more crucial. Dazed – Ten reasons the tampon tax is a joke
  2. There’s nothing luxurious about waking up at stupid o’clock feeling like you’ve been stabbed and are dying a slow death, whilst you’re laying in a bloody pool of misery. – Cattitude & Co. – We Need To Talk About The Tampon Tax
  3. Are tampons an essential or luxury item? Unless Chanel and Dior have branched out into feminine hygiene for AW16, the answer seems pretty obvious. Elle UK – What’s the deal with tampon tax
  4. It’s that the tax represents an outdated and wrong view on the nature of women and their periods. – The Independent – We need to abolish the tampon tax and tackle the period taboo – even if it only saves women £2 a year

There is the argument that, if the 5% tax were used to provide sanitary products to women who cannot afford them or where they aren’t readily available, then it’d be worth keeping. I don’t disagree, but I also wonder – why should women be solely responsible for providing this funding? Unless you’ve got a wonderful male in your life who buys your tampons every month, the majority of people paying this 5% are women. Providing an essential product should be the responsibility of everyone. It would be like asking only the sick to pay tax for the NHS.

My opinion is that it’s a silly tax to have. On top of stained sheets, ruined clothes, bloating, cravings, mood swings, mess, anxiety, and discomfort, an extra 5% charge feels like being kicked when you’re down.

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