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Guys? You're not helping (Palin sexism watch)

 
 
Robert Gentel
 
  2  
Reply Sat 20 Sep, 2008 10:42 pm
@DrewDad,
DrewDad wrote:

Robert Gentel wrote:
Her supporters calling her a "hottie" is an attempt to diminish her importance?

Yes.

I think it attempts to reduce her from an entire person, to a cipher with a single quality. IMO, it's a defense mechanism. Powerful women are threating to a large part of society, male and female, and it's a way of getting some imagined control over her.


I think you may be projecting intent that might not always be there. Cyclo called Palin hot in a context where I don't think he had any such intentions for example.

I am not contesting that it's never there, just that I don't feel every single person calling her hot is trying to do that consciously or even subconsciously.
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Sat 20 Sep, 2008 10:46 pm
@DrewDad,
DrewDad wrote:
I will add that I don't think comedy shows are relevant to this discussion.


I think it's relevant if we are talking about the hard hitting political opinion of... funny t-shirt sites. And I think it's relevant if the jokes that are deemed so very sexist are jokes that you might sanction in comedy.

For example, I'd find it hard for you to make the case that McCain cracking a joke about Reno's ugliness is sexist if you think Will Ferrell playing Reno isn't.

I can see a better case for wholly inappropriate but not necessarily sexist.
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  3  
Reply Sat 20 Sep, 2008 10:53 pm
@dlowan,
dlowan wrote:
I think they are calling her a "hottie" partly as a "she's a REAL woman...not like Hillary...so yah boo sucks to you librul effetes"...which is damned odd, because a lot of the fundamentalist/gun-nut base she is supposed to pull in would, I suspect, generally not be in favour of women in any leadership position at all.


I think a lot of people overestimate how racist or sexist America is right now and underestimate how partisan America is right now.

littlek
 
  2  
Reply Sat 20 Sep, 2008 11:06 pm
@Robert Gentel,
My housemate say she can't imagine anyone would not vote for Obama simply because he's black. I've seen bigoted commentary from our own members to indicate otherwise (though that may not be the only reason they would not vote for Obama).
Robert Gentel
 
  3  
Reply Sat 20 Sep, 2008 11:09 pm
@littlek,
I'm sure they exist. But for the first time in American politics I think that they aren't the automatic kingmakers they used to be.
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Sat 20 Sep, 2008 11:36 pm
@Robert Gentel,
That's probably true.
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  3  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 12:34 am
Quote:
Interestingly; the sweetest, and probably least sexist person I know, raised the question of 'what does a mother do when the country and her baby need her at the same time?'


Sorry. The sweet lady may or may not be generally sexist, but her observation is.

It doesn't make her a horrible person, but if she is applying separate standards to the behavior of male and female candidates then she is exhibiting sexism.

Alas Bill, you don't get to level this attack against Palin under the cover of a sweet old lady you know and avoid the sexist tag --- especially when you have an eagle eye for the racisim hidden within opposition to Obama.

What you would have us believe is that this sweet old lady's Aw Shucks Middle American observation about Palin is not only somehow different than a similar Aw Shucks Middle American observation that Obama is disconsertingly different, it's actually reasonable.

Selective moderation.



revel
 
  4  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 06:57 am
From the first I have argued that saying anything about Palin being able to both VP and mother regardless of health/physical problems was not being fair in that we do not say the same for men. It is sexist no matter who participates in that line of thought and voices it or just thinks it.

What I disagree with is her policies and her standard way of avoiding answers and the way she ran as governor and mayor.

I think by and large most of the news I have read regarding Palin has been about the latter rather than the former except for sensational news or few main media exceptions.
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 07:22 am
@revel,
Foxfyre, I'm wondering if you clicked on the links I provided? I decided not to post some of the more egregious ones as images (my kid was wandering around) but there's some pretty bad stuff in there.

My argument is not even "Hillary has had it much worse for Palin for much longer" (though I could make that argument rather easily), but "you're saying Palin's treatment is worse than Hillary's??? Not hardly."

I agree with Robert that the kookier outposts (t-shirts etc.) don't necessarily have a real impact on the election, but I agree with nimh that they're gross and worth censure.

There are many things to object to with McCain's Chelsea joke but for me the central one was that she was a KID at the time. We think of her now as adult, poised, campaigning for her mom -- it's less upsetting to think of that joke being directed at now-Chelsea than then-Chelsea. But at the time she was like, 12. Just mean.

I wonder if that's part of why it was suppressed here -- protecting Chelsea, not just McCain.

But yes, the press has been McCain's "base" for a very long time, and I couldn't be happier to see that changing.
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 07:27 am
@Robert Gentel,
From your mouth to the voters.
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 07:38 am
@Robert Gentel,
Also...is that a generational shift you believe you are seeing?

Or a shift in the American public at large?
0 Replies
 
dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 07:38 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Good grief.

I agree with Finn.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  0  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 08:05 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Agreeing with Finn can be disconcerting, but it's happened (to me) a few times in the past six or so months.

0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  0  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 08:06 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Finn dAbuzz wrote:
Alas Bill, you don't get to <snip> avoid the sexist tag


I'm glad I'm not the only one who sees this.
0 Replies
 
Diest TKO
 
  2  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 09:43 am
If Obama's campaign isn't doing this, then why do we care? We already know sexism is real, and manifests itself in many forms. Not the least of which is in the name of capitalism and making the next buck.

In terms of sexism, McCain and Palin arent fighting with Obama or the media. They are fighting with free speech (no matter how disgusting) and the free market for which they so cherish.

Someone already mentioned Obama, and how his middle name has been used by people (e.g. - Ann Coulter) to inflate fears of Muslims. Palin should take note, and just ignore it. It's totally irrelevant to the election.

There are people in this election who won't vote for Obama because he is part black. Others won't vote for him because they think he is a Muslim and have no problem discriminating on this matter.

There are people out there that will not vote for McCain, because they don't want a woman in the position of power like that.

Those toxic ideals are certainly in combat with the American vision (our preamble), but the election is not the place where that battle will conclude.

No matter the outcome of this election, sexism and racism will still exist. What matters right now is that we don't contribute to that. Perhaps the right wing will start to care about equality issues a little more that they've seen it a little closer.

T
K
O
0 Replies
 
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 10:05 am
It is a trip listening to people who seem to think that racism and sexism should be gone already. We passed laws but laws have limited power, and none when it comes to personal belief and morality. We can pass laws that say that women should be considered equal to men, but we can't make it happen. Some people will not vote for Obama because he is black, and some people will not vote for McCain because he will likely die in office and is VP is a woman. That is how it is going to be, there is nothing anybody can do about it, and whining about it shows a lack of maturity.

We might have been able to hold a national discussion on the subject of sexism in politics, but not for the fact that Hillary pulled out the sexism card at every turn over the last year. Now is not the time. For now the compaints about sexism comes off as "BooHoo"
0 Replies
 
LionTamerX
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 10:19 am
@Robert Gentel,
Quote:

I think a lot of people overestimate how racist or sexist America is right now and underestimate how partisan America is right now.


Sadly this is true to a large degree. It's really weird where I live, I know of at least two lifelong Democrats who are not voting this year because they cannot vote for a black man. I also know several old timers who are "voting for the n****r, because he know what it's like to be poor".

On a happy note, my lifelong Republican voting in- laws, are voting Obama this year because they are completely fed up with the mess that the GOP has left us in.
0 Replies
 
Foxfyre
 
  3  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 10:30 am
@sozobe,
sozobe wrote:

Foxfyre, I'm wondering if you clicked on the links I provided? I decided not to post some of the more egregious ones as images (my kid was wandering around) but there's some pretty bad stuff in there.

My argument is not even "Hillary has had it much worse for Palin for much longer" (though I could make that argument rather easily), but "you're saying Palin's treatment is worse than Hillary's??? Not hardly."

I agree with Robert that the kookier outposts (t-shirts etc.) don't necessarily have a real impact on the election, but I agree with nimh that they're gross and worth censure.

There are many things to object to with McCain's Chelsea joke but for me the central one was that she was a KID at the time. We think of her now as adult, poised, campaigning for her mom -- it's less upsetting to think of that joke being directed at now-Chelsea than then-Chelsea. But at the time she was like, 12. Just mean.

I wonder if that's part of why it was suppressed here -- protecting Chelsea, not just McCain.

But yes, the press has been McCain's "base" for a very long time, and I couldn't be happier to see that changing.


Soz, the issue here is sexism. If McCain actually told the joke in a public forum--something that nobody has convinced me happened--it was crude and offensive and potentionally hurtful and he should be ashamed of himself. I have said so several times now. I am NOT convinced that it was anything worse than a crude joke intended for private consumption only. Until somebody steps forward and says they heard McCain tell it and it was in (whatever) context, I have no reason to have any other opinion about it. All the sources so far have been hearsay reported by people who were obviously attempting to paint John McCain in a bad light. And RG is right. The joke might be funny to some. Offensive to others. But it was not sexist.

Hillary Clinton has indeed had a lot of scrutiny over many years now and has had some bad press from a lot of people who were obviously attempting to paint her in a bad light. Most of that has been the same kinds of scrutiny that would be applied to a man, however. When it was sexist--commenting on her appearance or demeanor in a way that would never be appled to a man, for instance--I bristled right along with the rest of you. I am in no way bristling at scrutiny of Sarah Palin's track record, views, pertinent history that should be directed at any candidate for high office. I am bristling when a different standard is being applied to her because she is a woman. And in that regard, the criticism is far more harsh for her than what Hillary has had to endure.

The din of commentary re Sarah Palin's children, her 'special' child, her responsibilities as a mother, her sense of propriety and dubious 'family values', yadda yadda have been a huge component in the scrutiny however, and that kind of thing was rarely if ever applied to Hillary. These are the kinds of things that are never applied to men, either--Joe Biden was a single father of two very young sons when he first went to Washington for instance. Was he criticized for putting his career before his kids???? No. He has been praised for hurrying home to them after work every day and being a good dad. Has anyone seriously questioned Barack Obama's ability to be there as a dad for his young children and also be President of the United States?

But Sarah Palin, a woman, is apparently not to be allowed that luxury. For years the feminists have been poo poohing the idea that a woman must stay home with her children in order to be a good mother. Now, all of a sudden, that kind of old school idea is being leveled at Palin--not from the rigid, moralistic, sanctimonious Right mind you, but from the Left. Her children should come first. It is irresponsible of her to be Vice President--she can't do that and also fulfill her responsibility to her kids.

Couple that with numerous observations about her hairstyle, eyeglasses, etc. etc. and such elegant adjectives as 'beauty queen' and 'slut' and 'bitch' and 'hooker' being thrown around on the blogs and as late night 'humor', and there is no way anybody can intellectually call it anything other than blatant and hateful sexism.
Bi-Polar Bear
 
  1  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 10:43 am
@DrewDad,
now, is this rhetorical pig wearing lipstick?
0 Replies
 
Bi-Polar Bear
 
  2  
Reply Sun 21 Sep, 2008 10:48 am
I suspect that when the day arrives when politicians act in a mature and respectful way towards each other and towards the people they're elected to serve then cartoonists and the 10% idiots will fall in line and this type of thing will stop.

In other words when pigs, with or without lipstick, fly.

Politicians earn the disrespectful treatment they get. In spades.
 

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