Some opinions suggested that he likes pretty, younger women such as his own wife exemplified and now she was getting older and so the old dawg’s eyes were wandering. It never occurred to anyone that such an argument could not nor would have been made about Dan Quayle’s vice presidential candidacy.
As the campaign followed its trail, I noticed that Palin bashing became rather a sport. I wrote a response to one such opinion, probably on Huffington Post that called for a cease and desist (to which no one really paid attention). The writing also pointed out that I thought the reason McCain chose Palin was to serve as a human shield for his inanity.
I didn’t write that opinion because I agree with her viewpoints. I’d have to be given an entirely new brain for me to agree with her views. It’s that women candidates are sometimes subtly, sometimes blatantly treated differently than their male counterparts. When that started to be pointed out, then we were treated to photos of shirtless Barack Obama and Scott Brown like that brings some kind of parity.
Where’s Life magazine, Edward R. Murrow, Shana Alexander, Walter Cronkite. They’re gone and so apparently is the quality of journalism.
Back to the campaign trail. If anyone had done to Bill Clinton what he did to Hillary’s campaign, he would have fired himself. My suspicion is that underneath his unearned reputation for advocating women’s rights, he couldn’t stand the idea that there would be a possibility his wife could have been a better president than he. That’s something male candidates previously hadn’t had to watch out for in female spouses.
Lisa Murkowski has been stripped of a committee seat because she deigns to run a write-in campaign after losing the republican primary. Let’s see, the boys’ club didn’t do that to Patrick Leahy or Joe Lieberman when they switched political labels. The cover here is we’re talking two different parties’ actions. Still in between the lines is the phrase “uppity woman”. The republicans feel that way about Palin and Murkowski because they’re coloring outside the lines. The democrats worry that these uppity women will even stray over into their frame.
While it’s fairly easy for me to criticize what the republicans and media are doing, I have to wonder about the dearth of women democratic party candidates. Yeah there’s Kirsten Gillibrand and I don’t see her being held up as a shining possibility of women candidates. Yet she’s wonderfully powerful and thoughtful. When asked how she came to change some of her views, she responded: “it’s a case of learning more and expanding my view.” In the meantime media prefer to dwell on Christine O’Donnell’s folly.
I have to wonder about the dearth of comments from democrats about the women bashing going on. I have to wonder about the good of democrats at all. Nancy Pelosi is continually being bashed; yet she seems to be the only democratic leader who gets the tough stuff passed unlike her male counterpart in the senate. Fellow democrats don’t rise to her defense when she’s bashed. Whereas there’s always some excuse made for Harry Reid’s actual incompetence, but then he’s not an uppity woman like Pelosi.
I long for Shirley Chisholm. She is gone and so apparently is the quality of our aspirations. She was the first black candidate for president. She wrote an autobiography called Unbought and Unbossed which is probably why she hasn’t been referenced in campaigns since then. All the staff Chisholm hired for her congressional office consisted of women, half of them black. Chisholm said that during her New York legislative career, she had faced much more discrimination because she was a woman than because she was black. Nothing much has changed since her 1972 campaign for the presidency. Her other autobiography is entitled The Good Fight. That fight is not done.