Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Megan and Hillary

sisters in victimization.

The privilege olympics: sexism or racism?:

(Opening disclaimer: the sexism in the MSM's treatment of Hillary, embodied by Chris Matthews, has been horrible and inexcusable. I am not making light of this in mocking Megan.)

As the post-mortems of the Hillary campaign gear up, one of the things I'm starting to hear discussed is who suffered worse: Hillary from sexism, or Barack from racism? I suppose you'd expect me to say this, but my vote goes to sexism. I think it is much harder to be perceived as a leader when you're a woman.
Or, maybe, Megan, you're not a leader, yourself, what with the horrible narcissism, elitism, and inability to feel empathy for others?
Women always walk a fine line between looking weak and looking bitchy--indeed, I'm not sure the line's even there in upper management positions. Women have had a harder time making it into the CEO's office. Everyone watched Carly Fiorina's ascencion to the head of Hewlett Packard and her spectacular implosion, with the subtext that maybe a woman just can't run an important company. By contrast, how many of you knew that Stanley O'Neil had stepped down as CEO of Merrill Lynch after criticism of his performance--much less that he was black?
Aside from those of us who read the recent long piece on O'Neil in The New Yorker, you mean, Megan? It only went to great lengths to explore the role of race in his story. Once again, we see how little Megan thinks of her readers.
I don't mean to belittle the racism that clearly still exists, and there really do seem to be an appalling number of people who will not vote for a black man. But we don't have any cultural problem with images of black men as leaders--think of any of a hundred movies where black men are military leaders, politicians, family patriarchs, and so forth. By contrast, there aren't very many images of strong women successfully and sympathetically holding a traditionally male leadership role.
The top two leaders of the Rebellion in Star Wars were women, though Princess Leia obviously got more screen time than Mon Mothma. It's not that Megan is entirely without a point, but at the same time I'll wager black men were not cast in leadership roles very often before the 70s, and even still, most of the movies she'd think of come from the last 15-20 years. It's only been since the 90s that women have gotten these roles, too, major exceptions like SW aside, so I can't dismiss the point, but the hand is being overplayed.
We've heard a lot of worry about what Barack Obama believes--is he a closet black nationalist? But much of the focus on Hillary Clinton is about who she is: a controlling ice queen, a petulant weakling using her tears to garner false sympathy. I've heard more than one man say to me that he couldn't vote for her because she reminds them of their mother. This carries with it a cultural presumption that we don't want a president with maternal qualities. Personally, I don't agree with her message. But I can think of worse things than having the president tell the federal agencies to clean up their damn rooms.
I'm going to highlight a piece of that.
But much of the focus on Hillary Clinton is about who she is: a controlling ice queen, a petulant weakling using her tears to garner false sympathy.
And now, I present Megan's words on Hillary from Jan 9th:
Is it sexist to comment on Hillary's clothes?
(Btw, this was the first time Megan spelled Hillary with two L's.)

Megan on Jan 13th:
Cry once, you're human. Cry all the time, and it's a schtick. A schtick, moreover, that suggests you're a cynical, manipulative woman who uses tears to get what you want.
Megan on March 1st:
It's probably true that Hillary would not be in politics if she weren't married to Bill; she doesn't strike me as someone who's naturally attracted to electioneering. And her senate career is obviously a side effect of his presidency.
I could go on, but methinks the point is made.
Megan, you are amazingly full of shit. It helps, when criticizing behavior, if you haven't been publicly engaging in the exact same behavior.

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