Why the internet is flooded with videos of Finnish women partying

In a video that went viral on social media, Finland’s youngest prime minister Sanna Marin is seen dancing and singing with her friends at a party. After facing flak over the footage, women have been sharing videos of themselves emulating Marin to show support to the leader

Dance Like the Prime Minister: Why the internet is flooded with videos of Finnish women partying

Sanna Marin, 36, has defended herself by saying that she did nothing but “dance, sing, hug my friends and drink alcohol.” AP

Women in Finland just wanna have some fun! In a video that when viral last week, Finland’s prime minister Sanna Marin is seen singing and dancing at a private party. Of course, it outraged some.

According to a report by The Guardian, critics have pointed out that the videos raise questions over the 36-year-old leader’s personal and political judgement. Her political opponents demanded that she should take a drug test.

But why can’t a head of the state simply party? Finnish women are standing up for Marin. Now, hundreds are posting their own videos of dancing and partying to show support for the PM. As Marin’s video faced flak, these women are trying to make a point by filming themselves re-enacting her.

Let’s take a closer look at the turn of events.

Standing in solidarity

Women from Finland and neighbouring Denmark have been sharing videos of themselves partying. These videos are accompanied by the hashtag “solidarity with Sanna”.

In the videos, mostly posted on Twitter, women are seen dancing, singing and enjoying themselves. Supporters have branded the criticism against Finland’s prime minister as sexist. Some say she has the right to party and enjoy herself, according to a report by Metro UK.

Why the furore?

Ever since the video went viral on social media, Sanna Marin has been at the receiving end of a backlash.

Opposition party leaders like Riikka Purra asked Marin to take a voluntary drug test. Member of Parliament Mikko Karna who is a part of Marin’s coalition government tweeted that “it would be wise” for her to take a drug test, according to a BBC report.

The video also features prominent Finnish public figures like singer Alma, TV host Tinni Wikstrom and YouTuber Ilona Ylikorpi.

According to a cybersecurity expert, Jarno Limnell, quoted by AlJazeera, the emergence of the video poses a threat to Finland’s security as top leaders of the country are of interest to foreign security services.

“Information is gathered from a variety of sources, and even seemingly trivial pieces of information can be significant to a foreign power,” said Limnell.

What has Sanna Marin said?

Sanna Marin, 36, has defended herself by saying that she did nothing but “dance, sing, hug my friends and drink alcohol”.

She said in a press conference, “I hope that, in the year 2022, it’s accepted that even decision-makers dance, sing and go to parties”.

Marin also confirmed that apart from alcohol, no drugs were involved. “I have not used drugs myself, or anything other than alcohol. I’ve danced, sung and partied and done perfectly legal things,” she said.

In an effort to end speculations on drug intake, Marin said on Friday that she has undergone a test and is waiting for the results.

Sanna added that she was aware that she was being filmed but was upset that the footage had become public. She urged people to understand the difference between leisure time and work time.

What happened last year?

However, this is not the first time Sanna’s social life had come under the scanner. In December 2021, the Finnish prime minister apologised for going to a club and coming into close contact with a COVID-19 positive person.

She received a text message that advised her to isolate on her work phone which she left at home before leaving for the club. But as soon as she came across the message she got tested and the result came back negative, according to a BBC report.

In a Facebook post she wrote, “I am very sorry for not understanding that I needed to do that.”

With inputs from agencies

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