9.08.2008

sexism is sexism is sexism

A long time ago, I wrote letters to - and finally cancelled my subscription to - Ms. magazine because they wouldn't defend the rights of women in the military.

They've changed on that score, to their credit. But at that time, in response to misogynistic practices within the military, editors basically said, "Women shouldn't join the military in the first place." This infuriated me. Women should do whatever they want! They don't have to submit their choices to some feminist-approval board first. And whatever they choose to do, women must have equal opportunity, equal pay, and a safe workplace, free of fear, harassment or assault. We don't have to like every woman's choices. But they have to be treated as fully human and equal citizens.

It doesn't matter how we feel about a person who is the target of bigotry. The bigotry is still wrong.

In that spirit, I blogged about the sexism targeted at Hillary Clinton, who I never would have voted for. In that same spirit, take a look at this, from the excellent ThinkProgress.
Donny Deutsch, host of CNBC's Big Idea, praised Gov. Sarah Palin (R-AK) as the "new creation" of the "feminist ideal" yesterday on CNBC's Squawk on the Street. "Women want to be her, men want to mate with her. It's as simple as that," he said, adding that Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-NY) failed because "she didn't put a skirt on!":

DEUTSCH: There is the new creation that the feminist woman has not figured out in 40 years of the feminist ideal that men can take in a woman in power and women can celebrate a woman in power. Hillary Clinton didn't figure it out. She didn't put a skirt on! […]

She [Palin] talked about energy. Didn't matter! Today everybody's running in circles — we want to have her over for dinner. I trust her. I want her watching my kids. I want her laying next to me in bed. That's the way people vote.

I'll pause here for you to finish vomiting.

Done yet? A little more mouthwash, perhaps?

One more note about this disgusting woman who the disgusting mainstream media forces us to defend. There is no such thing as an anti-abortion-rights feminist.

You can be feminist and feel that you must not terminate your own pregnancy, wanted or not. I've known many women with those beliefs.

But you cannot be feminist and believe that the government, a religious institution, or anyone other than the woman herself should have the final say - or any say! - over what any woman does with her body.

A creature can't be a polar bear and a duck. And you cannot be a feminist and support anti-choice laws. You cannot be a feminist and want to outlaw contraception. These fucking Uncle Tom women should get themselves a new name.

Good story from a few years ago (Lynn Harris again!) about the group I'm not naming.

20 comments:

PeterC said...

Heh, I think Palin would object to being called a feminist too.

Nevertheless I will not support attacks against her based on her gender which is where the public media seems to be going. In general the people who blog about her, both right and left, seem to be treating her as a human with political views. Many are nasty to her which is perfectly legit in my books. I posted my thoughts about it here.

The right has been trying to co-op the feminist movement for several years now, with "strong" women being able to dish out hate "just like the men." Meh, I figure you are strong based on your actions, not your mouth.

L-girl said...

Heh, I think Palin would object to being called a feminist too.

On the contrary, she belongs to the organization I'm referring to, the falsely named Feminists For Life.

In general the people who blog about her, both right and left, seem to be treating her as a human with political views.

I'm referring to treatment by the mainstream media, not bloggers.

David Heap said...

Couldn't agree more L-girl. I try not to pick up the daily press much -- too depressing, mostly -- but a friend showed my a piece on Saturday from Sun columnist Michael Coren opining that Palin should be at home with the kids (he didn't add "barefoot in the kitchen" but might as well have) and not in public life. So what we really need is more dads at home with the kids so women can run our countries (no fan of Palin, but can women politicians really do a worse job than the guys that are there now?).

I had hoped that the Canadian branch of anti-feminist women ("REAL" women) has disappeared under the same rock that Coren seems to have crawled out from under but no such luck... They are not only still around (http://www.realwomenca.com/), the Conservative Party just appointed one (circumventing local nomination procedures) in the riding of London-Fanshawe.

How many times in one morning do I have to clean to vomit off my keyboard?

Fortunately, the incumbent in that riding (NDP's Irene Mathyssen) is not only a real feminist, she also attends every War Resisters event she is in town for. So it looks like I will be crossing the city to help out her campaign...

L-girl said...

In general the people who blog about her, both right and left, seem to be treating her as a human with political views.

It makes sense that Palin is not subjected to sexism from bloggers on the scale Hillary Clinton is/was, because the criticism of Palin comes from liberals and progressives, who mostly try not to be sexist.

Criticism of Clinton by right-wingers bloggers was extremely sexist.

redsock said...

I want her laying next to me in bed. That's the way people vote.

So millions of American men really want to snuggle with W? And now they want to cuddle with McCain?

Interesting.

L-girl said...

So millions of American men really want to snuggle with W? And now they want to cuddle with McCain?

Millions of supposedly straight American men! What gay man could possibly want to snuggle with Moron or McCain?!

Argh...running for the barf bag again...!

Jere said...

Deutsch is, fittingly, a douche. I always seem to come across his show about these people with product ideas or whatever, and I swear, 75 percent of the time it's a women's underwear-type product. I think he just gets a kick out of sitting there listening to women talk about their panties. That show should be called The Big Douchebag Talks About Women's Undergarments Idea.

Amy said...

Millions of supposedly straight American men! What gay man could possibly want to snuggle with Moron or McCain?!

Let alone what woman would? YUCK.

I am so bewildered and so disgusted by the Sarah Palin thing that I don't even know where to begin. The ultimate insult to women in that selection is that somehow it assumes women will vote for any woman, regardless of her stand on the issues or her level of (in)experience. Although I would defend to the end her decision to carry her last child to term despite the diagnosis of Down's syndrome, the fact that she would not defend any woman's right to make a different decision on any pregnancy infuriates me and certainly means that she is not someone I would call a feminist.

Working while having children is neither necessary nor sufficient to call one's self a feminist.

Nancy said...

The woman looks like a clown. Men obviously have no taste.

I detest Sarah Palin because of her love of shooting wolves from helicopters. I had nightmares for years after seeing a film of the barbarians shooting a helpless wolf who had nowhere to hide. There are many other reasons to despise her. "spoiled cheerleader" was the first thing that came to mind when I saw her and read about her threatening to remove anyone who didn't do just what she wanted.

And after Bush, I think it is time that we declared a moratorium on electing cheerleaders to any sort of public office.

I despise John McCain because he has been filmed looking at Palin's breasts.
Wow, now THAT would be a scandal...the President in bed with the Vice President.

This election is a joke. The country is a sicker joke. I just hope the Canadian election isn't as disgusting. And I want to stay in Canada even more than formerly, if that is possible.

deang said...

It is annoying that the right wing succeeded in demonizing the word feminist during the 80s, but then they bring it back into use when it suits them. How do they go so easily from lambasting the word one day to using it proudly the next without a twinge of self-consciousness? Their use of it is obviously intended to mislead and ultimately render the original meaning meaningless.

There was a great article in The Independent a coupe of days ago by Joan Smith, A Woman to Make Enlightened Voters Shudder. In it, she says right-wing women are "dangerous to other women" because "they have perfected the trick of stamping a feminine image on male power and selling it as something new, when they are in reality the most fervent upholders of the status quo or even determined ... to turn the clock back." She also gives a good summary of Thatcher's almost complete elimination of women from her cabinet.

Nigel Patel said...

The whole point of Palin is for her to be an Orwellian Trojan Horse.
They want to abolish the twentieth century and they do it by making their own alternate reality (like their pseudo science) and then...
...and then demand to give their completely farcical alternate reality equal billing with the one that was reasoned out over the last couple of centuries.
For those people "feminism" means a woman shoving the patriarchy down the throats of the rest of us.

James said...

The latest (as yet unconfirmed) report to surface is that, according to an 8-year-old news story, Wasilla under Palin's mayorship was the only municipality in Alaska to charge rape victims for their own forensic tests.

"spoiled cheerleader" was the first thing that came to mind

Of course, GW Bush actually was a cheerleader...

JakeNCC said...

I don't claim to know a thing about American politics and personally Sarah Palin doesn't do a thing for me BUT you would be amazed at how many men at my office have been talking about how "hot" she is and what a "babe" she is. Straight men seem to be really attracted to her although I can't imagine that they'd vote on looks but who knows. That is one crazy country sitting down there, Alan and Laura how did you all ever stand it all those years? ha.

James said...

They want to abolish the twentieth century...

Juan Cole has some good observations on Palin (you have to sit through an ad to see the article):

But the values of [McCain's] handpicked running mate, Sarah Palin, more resemble those of Muslim fundamentalists than they do those of the Founding Fathers. On censorship, the teaching of creationism in schools, reproductive rights, attributing government policy to God's will and climate change, Palin agrees with Hamas and Saudi Arabia rather than supporting tolerance and democratic precepts. What is the difference between Palin and a Muslim fundamentalist? Lipstick.

Cornelia said...

This infuriated me. Women should do whatever they want! They don't have to submit their choices to some feminist-approval board first. And whatever they choose to do, women must have equal opportunity, equal pay, and a safe workplace, free of fear, harassment or assault. We don't have to like every woman's choices. But they have to be treated as fully human and equal citizens.

It doesn't matter how we feel about a person who is the target of bigotry. The bigotry is still wrong.

Great!!! I couldn't agree more, Laura (though it's about a job I wouldn't choose myself, haha, no worries!)

Re: Palin: Of course, it would never be a good idea for anybody to oppose her because she's a woman - that would be sexist indeed - but we can and need to oppose her because of her anti-woman, anti-feminist, reactionary, conservative Republican orientation. A person with such views would always be a horrible choice in high office, regardless whether it's a sexist male idiot or a female collaborator of patriarchy! That doesn't mean she needs to stay home and do household stuff and as David said, we need way more women in high positions and the job a lot of male politicians have been doing is horrid enough, so we needn't be over-picky, just we need to keep her from a place she can cause a huge amount of trouble. I always say that people like her are my first best candidates for violence protection act restraining order!

It makes sense that Palin is not subjected to sexism from bloggers on the scale Hillary Clinton is/was, because the criticism of Palin comes from liberals and progressives, who mostly try not to be sexist.

Criticism of Clinton by right-wingers bloggers was extremely sexist.

I couldn't agree more, Laura. These idiots are extremely sexist and nasty in general! When I heard about them for the first time when I was still at school, it freaked me out because I got to hear such on a regular basis from all my bullies and offenders back then!!! That was long ere the glorious days of violence protection act for me...

Fortunately, the incumbent in that riding (NDP's Irene Mathyssen) is not only a real feminist, she also attends every War Resisters event she is in town for. So it looks like I will be crossing the city to help out her campaign...

That's great, David. Thanks so much and keep up the good work. Really cool!

James said...
They want to abolish the twentieth century...

Juan Cole has some good observations on Palin (you have to sit through an ad to see the article):

But the values of [McCain's] handpicked running mate, Sarah Palin, more resemble those of Muslim fundamentalists than they do those of the Founding Fathers. On censorship, the teaching of creationism in schools, reproductive rights, attributing government policy to God's will and climate change, Palin agrees with Hamas and Saudi Arabia rather than supporting tolerance and democratic precepts. What is the difference between Palin and a Muslim fundamentalist? Lipstick.

Yep, that's the common points of offender's strategy thing once again. Thanks, James.

I know how disgusting these people really are, but I hope it did not really get literally that sickening for anybody to the point of really throwing up. I much hope that was only meant in a figurative way! Otherwise of course the pail or bag would be preferable to the keyboard (no cleaning up) and the keyboard to the computer (no implications on warranty, haha, just kidding, but I worked in the warranty department and a customer wanted the courier to pick up the faulty monitor at a bar and I warned him that if some drunks throw up on the screen, that would do away with the warranty. He could actually reassure me that the owner of the bar is a friend of his and will store the monitor for collection in a room nearby, not right at the bar where all the binge-drinkers are!) But for the nowadays fortunately very advanced medical possibilities of prevention, I am proud to announce (haha, mark the wording) that to my knowledge, not only dramamine but also phenergan is available over the counter in Canada! No offense meant to anybody, and I really hope nobody is angry. Hope it's okay that I write that. Just wanted to make the point in case it could be considered helpful! It was just a very concerned reaction on my part.
And while I do take advantage of the great invention of dramamine also when there is kind of an emotionally caused stomach problem as well right away and normally in good time, I still need to tell myself this in
order not to freak out moodwise: "I won't let them do me in! If I allow them to spoil my mood and fun that much, they would be happy if they knew!" But alas, I am still not very successful in keeping them from spoiling me a lot of fun. They still have a considerably (and when it's cold and there's other trouble extremely) bad influence on my mood way too often, sometimes to the point of triggercity once again! Dramamine works great for me on stomach upsets (any kind) but the mood-related repercussions are way harder for me to sort out, haha!

Cornelia said...

had hoped that the Canadian branch of anti-feminist women ("REAL" women) has disappeared under the same rock that Coren seems to have crawled out from under but no such luck... They are not only still around (http://www.realwomenca.com/), the Conservative Party just appointed one (circumventing local nomination procedures) in the riding of London-Fanshawe.

Absolutely. That's the female collaborators of patriarchy I was talking about. They are quite a catastrophe and can be real bullies.

Cornelia said...

I think most of the guys who are so crazy about Palin are just onto sexism and patriarchy and women collaborators. How low can it get, one wonders time and again. I stay as much away from that nasty unpleasant stuff as possible but sometimes ---ugh!!! However, all that fits perfectly in with the whole Republican stuff. When there was the election campaign in 1992, Marilyn Quayle aided and abetted Dan Quayle very much in the sexist trashtalking of patriarchy. The level of them and their likes is really beyond contempt!!!

Cornelia said...

So what we really need is more dads at home with the kids so women can run our countries (no fan of Palin, but can women politicians really do a worse job than the guys that are there now?).

Thanks, that's nice!

Cornelia said...

Another notorious sadomaso collaborator of patriarchy is Camille Paglia. Ugh, I know why I like violence protection act!!!

Cornelia said...

However, all that fits perfectly in with the whole Republican stuff. When there was the election campaign in 1992, Marilyn Quayle aided and abetted Dan Quayle very much in the sexist trashtalking of patriarchy. The level of them and their likes is really beyond contempt!!!

Sorry of course I meant Marilyn Quayle aided and abetted Dan Quayle in sexist patriarchal trashtalking both of Hillary and of feminism.
Much as I regret it, I am well aware that unfortunately Hillary has made way too many concessions to the conservative swing-voters! I think there are other US lady politicians who have kept up liberal and leftist positions under pressure way better than Hillary, for example Barbara Boxer and to some extent Nancy Pelosi (and many others on less prominent positions) and of course I prefer them and what they can do and have been doing to a great extent.