What women's rights look like when the two sides come together as one.
What women's rights are when women are no longer manipulated by party rhetoric.


Saturday, April 6, 2013

Get Ready For The Sexism Fest

Cynthia Ruccia



Well like the title says, gird yourself and get ready for the sexism fest to pick up where it left off if Hillary Clinton decides to run for president again. I am under no illusions that anything has changed. If anything, our culture has become so crude that no boundary to sexism expressed exists anymore. If 2008 proved anything, it was that there is no shame in expressing sexism ------no shame in any way. And an HRC candidacy in 2016 will only illustrate that point once again. If anything, I expect that the sexism will be even WORSE this time around.

I don't mean to repeat all that Anita Finlay wrote yesterday in this splendid piece on the very same subject. She certainly wrote it better than  I could, but it bears repeating that we must prepare ourselves for the worst. In 2008 when the vile sexism started to run amok, we were frozen in place in disbelief. It seemed impossible that in our modern times in 2007--2008 that the expression of sexism would go unchallenged. But for all practical purposes, unchallenged it was. Worse, there are plenty of self described "feminist pro women supporters" who still have their heads in the sand that it ever happened at all.

I want to see a woman president more than just about anything as far as women's advancement goes. It is at the very top of my feminism wish list. I ascribe, as I have often said, to former President of Chile Michelle Bachelet's sentiment that nothing did more for the women of her country than having a woman president----no law, no demonstration, no protest, nothing. (As a side note---it's looking like Bachelet, who stepped down from the presidency in 2010, is going to make another go of it!!).

At any rate, I tend to agree with Bachelet. A woman president would shatter a bunch of myths, belief systems, and cultural conditioning about women. It won't by any measure shatter all of it, but it would be a landmark event for all women regardless of political persuasion. That old saw that if you keep doing the same thing over and over you will keep getting what you've been getting over and over is true. And we may be finally ready to have that conversation started about what we need to do to break the logjam women are in,  illustrated even these last few weeks by the profusion of articles and discussion about why women's progess is frozen. At least people are waking up to the fact that women run little in this country. The head-in-the-sand thing has been one of the least attractive traits of the "pro-woman" crowd of late. I for one am happy to see that this conversation may have some staying power wherever it leads us.

I really hope Hillary Clinton runs and I will feel highly dramatically let down if she doesn't. Her whole life has been leading up to this moment of her being president. Why would she walk away from it NOW when all the winds are finally at her back? I do believe that once she regains herself after her pause to rest and reflect, she will come to the same conclusion, age be damned. It would be hard to resist it in the position she is in, a national icon of sorts, the most qualified women ever. It will be said that the inevitability factor existed last time around, but it is of an entirely different magnitude this time.

For the four million of us who left the Democratic Party as a result of the sexism in 2008, this will NOT be a repeat kind of sexism because the sexism will be ramped up in quarters where we've been hanging out. Get ready for the vicious sexism to come from the Republicans if HRC is the nominee. It will be really bad. The place where we anchored for a bit will become repugnant. Worse, we will FINALLY see the Democrats stand up against it, and for those of us in the 4 million, that too will be repugnant. Where the hell were they in 2008?

We will be in the unenviable position of looking not so enthusiastic because of the disorientation that the above events will inevitably produce within us. I can see it now as clear as day, being told over and over again "but I thought that this is what you wanted---if not, what was your protest all about?" as a reaction to my appearing lukewarm to an HRC candidacy.

Let me say this again, I want a woman president RIGHT NOW. Let it be Hillary. I understand that she has been tainted in the eyes of many by her association with Obama. That affiliation includes people's upset about the Benghazi debacle. I feel upset about those things too. I pulled out all of the stops and went all out eventually to work for HRC in 2008. I'm not sure I can see myself doing that again at this point. My principle hangup is that I will have to work side by side with the same people who heralded the age of Obama and swept the sexism under the rug. My second hang up is that I will have to side with people who still think that Obama is a god, and I don't have the tolerance to deal with that approach. It just infuriates me.

But once the sexism spew begins in earnest, I'm sure that that will bug me even more, and I will once again be called to do my part to fight it. But this time around, I'll be less Pollyanna-ish about it. It's coming, and it will be awful. And I guess I'm going to just have to steel myself.........




38 comments:

  1. omg Cynthia, that's exactly how I feel. I'm dreading a Hillary candidacy in some ways.

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  2. it's already disorienting and awful. And she isn't even running yet

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  3. I couldn't agree more. Unfortunately, I wouldn't be sure Hillary is their candidate. Any Hispanic man would get their support over Hillary.

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    1. that's a chilling thought

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    2. you might be right. I hate the idea of that that she'd get screwed once again.....

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  4. I'm preparing to be baffled. Who will the Republicans run? I really think the sexist Dems won't support HRC, but I guess we'll see...

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    1. I wish the Republicans would run Condi Rice but I'm sure she's too smart to put herself through all of that

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    2. The Republicans have a deep bench of women that they could be promoting. Unfortunately they're not doing that----in favor of an hispanic. So maybe you're right ashleyh, maybe the Dems will follow suit. Sigh.....

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  5. Cynthia,

    As always, your words ring true. I cannot stand to be in the same room with the sexist democrats of 2008. Whenever I see some of those who stabbed Hillary in the back on the morning talk shows for the chosen one, they cannot hide the disdain they still feel for Hillary Clinton, any more than I can hide the disdain I still feel towards them. I agree, they will probably go for a Hispanic man. On one hand, I don't want Hillary to have to put herself through that gauntlet again,....but on the other hand, she is still the BEST person to lead this country. Soo, after hearing her speech yesterday morning at the Women in the World event, I decided if she is willing, than I am damn sure willing! As she said in her speech, "we have to keep fighting"!! I, like those of you here, am weary of the sickening sexism rearing it's head over and over again, but I have to believe we are stronger than it. "They" want us to give up and give in, but we can't and we won't.

    To help me get through it, I've decided to try to surround myself during the campaign (if she runs) with the 2008 Hillary people whenever possible. Most of us know who we are in our own area and if not, it would be fun to have a little secret pin, or color, or something to identify ourselves...just to help us keep our sanity. Although I do not relish the fact of having to be in the same space with the "Obama people" of 2008 and frankly would just as soon slap some of them as look at them, I've decided to basically ignore them whenever possible. Engage without engaging and think of it as "using" them for a higher goal. It's the only way I can tolerate having to be in contact with them in any way.

    So, that is just my two cents. Hopefully, the people who started that whole War on Women site (probably Obama supporters), will feel the need to continue and will speak out forcefully when the sexism begins. Probably not, but there is a slim chance. If not, or maybe in addition to, people like you Cynthia, Anita, Paulie and other well spoken, media savvy and ardent Hillary supporters and champions of women will be called upon, once again, to carry the day. I, for one, will be ready to do whatever I can to help Hillary Clinton become the first woman President of the United States. Corny as it sounds, I feel it is my duty as a citizen.

    Sorry for the long winded rant.

    Linda



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    1. Not me! I am anxiously awaiting a new Hillary era as I am smarter due to remaining politically in VA state politics. We unerstand what is coming and will be prepared. More important, the fact that Binden will bow out of contention if Hillary runs already shows that the Obama side has played all its cards. Clinton help Obama win a second seat and Hillary got her interview and his endorsement. It will be sexist but not the same. Let's go ladies--join up and slide over to "I am ready for Hillary" pac. For example, I am campaigning for a good man named "Cuccenilli" for VA governor as I have learned that "individuals" vs. "Party" is the only thing that makes sense today. While working today in the Hispanic Prince William district I will be talking Hillary--a name that needs no interpretation. She will win if she runs.

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    2. Linda----that's a good idea to stay focused with our group of HRC supporters who never lost faith with her and who went to the mat for her in the face of a sickening storm of sexism from our own side. We should probably reboot ourselves once she is the nominee and be our own loud, angry, protective faction.
      One of our readers called us the "Hillary dead enders," but that person is wrong. We're the people who stood up for the truth, as unpopular as it was at the time

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    3. that's sweet Anonymous----campaigning for Hillary while campaigning for Cucinelli----I love it!! :)

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    4. "Reboot".. I like that :-)

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  6. The Obama wing of the Democrat party is never going to let Hillary run because then the Clinton wing of the party will be stronger than they are. All the fawning you see over Hillary's inevitability is just calculated to make them look not sexist. Soon they will pick Obama 2 and it will be a man. The democrats will keep their abortion dog whistles ready to go however.

    Republicans don't have the deep seated contempt for women that you see among Democrats. Sure Republicans say some really stupid things but they actually grasp the concept of manners and having class so I don' believe you will see the flat out gleeful sexism from Republicans IF Hillary runs. But as usual IF she runs you can expect her to be taken out by the sexist pigs in her own party with the support of the see no evil hear no evil "feminists".

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    1. I sure hope you are wrong Bes----but I guess we'll just have to be ready if you are right....

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  7. Yes, indeed, huge sexism fest to come.
    However, I am still waiting to hear about Benghazi. "What difference does it make?"

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    1. yes that was certainly an unfortunate comment....

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  8. Oh dear God not Hillary again! Her time in the Obama Administration, plus her betrayal of all those who supported her makes her the last person, of either gender I would/could ever vote for.

    And lest every has forgotten, the worst of the misogyny came from the left in defense of their great God Obama.

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    1. hi Kenoshamarge----I've missed your voice!!

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  9. For some, there will never be "the right woman".

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  10. Anyone who thinks the republicans will be polite to hillary if she runs is in a dream world. They will try to destroy her like the have been so good at doing to other candidates in the past. They are the "willy Horton" experts of politics. Frankly I am amazed it didn't work with obama. He had so many willy horton moments in his past he should have been an easy target but the republicans failed twice to get him on past associations. I believe that minorities will join with women in supporting Hillary Clinton if she runs. Her history is not a mystery to them.
    God Speed if she does

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  11. Of course the Republicans won't be polite to Hillary Clinton. They loathe her as the left loathes George Bush. Loathing seldom leads to politeness in politics.

    Hillary Clinton has had her day and if she had the class to step down and "retire" I would try to find some of the respect I once had for her. Time will tell if that happens.

    One thing, just my observation, it's taken the Republicans a generation to finally get rid of all the old timers at the top of their party. At least as far as running for president goes.

    The young'uns are smart, attractive and YOUNGER. Both men and women. None of the woman, that I can see, are quite ready for the top of the ticket but there are many who would be great VPs.

    I want a woman president too, but I don't want Hillary Clinton. I am sick of the Clintons. I am tired of the sight of the Clintons. Both of them. I don't want big mouth, Bill Clinton back in the White House.

    And having Hillary in the White House would be different than Obama other than gender, weight, age and race? Should we be grateful to the Dems for "allowing" a woman to run now that a black man has had two terms? Once again women should take the back seat and the crumbs. That Hillary would accept that also colors my opinion of her.

    Since she seems to be the left's best chance at winning the White House in 2016 I would love her to death if she told them to go screw themselves. That would take courage. But it wouldn't kill the fire in the belly that she has to be president.

    Oh and yes, I did mention weight. I don't much "like" or respect fat politicians. Seems to me if they have so little control over their forks they are lacking in disciplin. JMO and one that is sure to enrage many.

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  12. It's OK to be angry about recent history regarding Clinton and Obama; In that situation we had women and minorities in competition with each other and one group was going to lose out. That was the tragedy of that election. But I don't think It will help bring a women into the whitehouse if every women that runs is not acceptable; the "just not that woman" syndrome that affects so many women voters these days. I think to get gender balance in the executive branch, you have to go with the women that has the best shot; regardless of her politics. Her politics should be seen as a subsequent, irrelevant issue. Vote gender first, as minorities do with their race and women win.

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  13. There are a LOT of great points here. And, as a man, I really hope that my comments aren't taken out of hand.

    I supported Hillary in 2000, 2006 and 2008. Living in NY and seeing how wonderfully she represented us, I really loved the idea of seeing how wonderfully she would represented the US. I hated the sexism and paid careful attention to it so that I could learn to see it when it was happening, which isn't something that I typically was able to do before 2008. So, my hope is that, in 2016, lots more men will step up and deal with the campaign both externally and internally. And, applying the principle of charity, I'd like to think that there are a lot more people like me out there who, in 2008, learned what sexism really is and why it is so damaging to us as a country and as individuals, regardless of our gender.

    I do take some offense to the ideas that people are sharing here about having to work with those who supported Obama. It's just a reality of the world we live in and the country we live in and the political functions that are necessarily going to result from a two-party system that is the result of our Constitution. (With the electoral college, three parties cause problems and four viable parties cause constitutional crises in which the Supreme Court would ALWAYS have to decide the winner.) So, we need to work with the Obama supporters WITH SMILES ON OUR FACES because any fracture in the party will lead to a Hillary defeat in a general election.

    Finally, while I do agree with the idea that a female president is what this country needs, I do not agree with the idea that just any woman should be voted in by gender. I understand if a lot of women will do that, since it is an opportunity they've never been afforded. But if it comes down to, say, Biden/Bachmann or (god forbid) Biden/Palin, I really (really, really, really... and I mean really... did I say really?) hope that people choose Biden (or just about any other man the Dems might nominate instead of Hillary). These women are not interested in feminism, even if, as political leaders of sorts, they are non-practicing feminists, literally and figuratively. But they do not represent the sort of thinking that will benefit women and, particularly, young women/girls; we do not need a nation where women forget about the fights women have had to wage just because the first woman elected president has refused to recognize the existence, let alone the importance of said fights.

    I do think Hillary is running. I do think she sees it as a duty. And I do hope that, like Bill did with Al Gore, by picking a running mate who just like himself, had the same personal identifiers (young, southern, centrist, etc.). So, with Hillary, I hope she doubles down, like Bill did, proving he wanted change (unlike Obama, who chose someone so different than himself so as not to be upstaged). By doubling down, she needs to pick a woman of her age and competence. Maybe even a carpetbagger like herself... How about a Hillary Clinton/Elizabeth Warren ticket in 2016? (The only problem with that is they are too close in age for Warren to be a natural heir; but that might be good, too, for reasons that would make my comment far too long. :)

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    1. TJ: Your tirade against Palin and Bachmann shows you for the Vile Prog your are. The Democrat party and media used their sexism on these two women as well as Hillary. Neither of these women are perfect but Biden is a joke with a penis that apparently makes him acceptable to you and other Democrats. I am an Independent and think for myself.

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    2. Here here Bes! IMO This is just another lefty man cracking the whip and telling Dem women to sit down, shut up, and get back in line - for the sake of your uterus dahhhrling! For the greater good, suck it up. Claiming to support women - when it's your turn - claiming to be a feminist all while pissing on women who won't get in line like Bachmann or Palin. Had my fill of that crap in '08.

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    3. hey Thia----you go girl!!!! You always state it better than I do!!! And I say that with a great deal of admiration....

      And Bes-----you are the bomb!!!! As always!!!!

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  14. TJ---thanks for coming over here and expressing yourself. The fact that you are a man is irrelevant to our discussions as there are many wonderful men who want to see women start running things in proportion to their numbers in this country.

    However, your particular POV is very different than many who come here for alot of reasons. We have taken up in great detail some of the points you bring up including:

    1) "having to work with those who supported Obama"-----this blog and others like it came into being because of the sexism of 2008, and much of it was perpetrated by the Obama minions. Many of the 4 million who left were long term party activists and insiders like me who were appalled at what our party turned into. So we have left the party mostly to become Independents. And yes we have a bit of an ax to grind since our very reasons for being Democrats were trampled upon

    2) your view of "feminism" from what you write in our POV is dated and dangerous. As long as "feminism" is all about our uteruses exclusively, women will continue to run little in the U.S. Look at our running list of stats in the right hand column to get a sense of how little empowerment women are affordedf in this country

    3) the REAL War on Women is the one that conspires to keep women divided against themselves and their own best interests.

    You may want to dig into the archives of this blog to get a handle of what I am talking about, because those ideas are the wave of the future, not the current blather political that keeps women down and under control, and doesn't advance our long term interests. An d the Democrats are just as guilty as the Republicans. More so really since they preen as the party of women but are just as dangerously sexist as the other side.

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    1. Thanks for the welcome. I do appreciate it. And thanks for taking the time to respond.

      I appreciate the axe you have to grind with Obama's "minions." But, like it or not, if Hillary (or any female Democrat) is going to win, she is going to need strong support from his supporters. It's just the nature of the game. That's why we need to work together and try to forget about the travesties of 2008. I do agree that the Obama team played their dirty politics pretty well, but I fault the media with letting them get away with it. I don't fault them for trying, if only because politics is an ugly contact sport and that wasn't going to stop in 2008 just because of the identity politics involved.

      The other point I want to make is that, since I consider myself a feminist, I fully understand that feminism isn't about a uterus. I just happen to believe that there are very few Republican women who will be interested in pushing the sort of policy that will benefit women. I believe that women need not just a female voice in the Oval Office but a voice that is interested in the issues that impact women, since men have had over 200 years of men-first politics.

      I do hate to rehash 2008 all over but, while it's still visible in the rearview mirror, I will venture to say that I think Hillary would have done well to push herself as a candidate of change by focusing more on the historical nature of her campaign. That is one place where, as a feminist, she failed herself and the movement(s); first, second, third and, now, fourth. Obama was smart about having people push his historical candidacy for him. Hillary ran as a man would, which was detrimental to her candidacy.

      Aside from that, I the other thing that really pushed me over the edge was how Obama was allowed to get delegates from MI and how Hillary's delegates from FL were cut in half. I do really feel as if the party let us all down by going that route. Next time around, Hillary has to focus more on the caucuses so that she is in the lead from the start to the finish. That way, none of the sexism in the world would keep her from the nomination.

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  15. funny TJ--I take the same stance about the sexism that you take on the FL and MI delegates. I care about both, but it is the sexism that still sticks in my craw and it isn't far enough in the rearview mirror for me.

    I'm also not going to put down all women on the right because of the caricature that the left likes to make of them. There are some stupendous women on the right of the spectrum. As long as the left rats out the right and vice versa, women will continue to fight against themselves removing our natural advantage of greater numbers.

    I agree that it would have been great if HRC had focused on the historic nature of her candidacy, but the reasons why she didn't could take up a whole blog piece themselves.

    I have little admiration for the Obama gang. They completely discredited themselves in my eyes with their tactics and they have done nothing to redeem themselves. That goes for the Democratic Party as well.

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  16. I have said from the beginning and I continue to believe that for women to see one of their own in the white house, some women will have to swallow their disdain and vote gender pure and simple. It is a very difficult task to achieve. Consider this; if the woman candidate were Palin; how many liberal women would support her in a general election? Now ask yourselves how many women writers here on this blog would support Michele Obama in the general election? The answer to these two questions frames the problem we have directly. Before one group of women can ask another group of women to support a candidate like Palin, they have to ask themselves if they would be willing to support Pelosi were she to win the nomination.

    Hello TJ.
    While I do respect your opinion, your thoughts seem a bit strange and foreign as far as American politics is concerned. We don't have "natural heir's" in this country. Also, Hillary Clinton picking a running mate with identical "personal identifiers" as you call them is an invitation to lose the election big time. She needs to reach out to others for her VP pick. The Clinton supporters were stung badly in 2008 so while they may be willing to work with Obama supporters, it might be a bit much to ask them to do so with smiles of their faces.

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    1. "without smiles on our faces"---you got that right Ryan!!! And badly stung we were.

      I still believe in most of the women voting for most of the women most of the time. I used to me more rigid in this belief. I have grown to realize that for all of us, there are probably a woman or two we just can't vote for. However, most of us can vote for most of the women most of the time and that's as good as it's going to get.

      The amount of derision we get from being called "vagina voters" to being derided doesn't move me. Call me what you will, but I'm voting for most of the women most of the time. On my "cannot vote for" list however is Nancy Pelosi because she turned her back on Hillary. As a woman with the power to make a huge difference, she couldn't muster up the balls to recognize the truly historic nature of the HRC candidacy. Some might give her a pass, but I can't and won't. and also to Michelle Obama for her truly vomitous comments about Hillary. At least you could understand where that came from in her since it was her husband she was standing up for. Pelosi has no such excuse. Either way, those two aren't running so I won't have to turn away from them on the ballot anyways.

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  17. but TJ you do have some great thoughts worth pondering

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  18. I would prefer a Republican woman candidate. Preferably NOT with Ivy indoctrination and from the West Coast with business and government experience. Meg Whitman might be nice but she does have the Ivy indoctrination black mark against her.

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    1. I still love Condi Rice even though she won't run. Sigh.....

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  19. Good thoughts as always cynthia. But I say with sadness how many women are on other women's "not that women list" Three of them were mentioned in just the last two posts (M. Obama, Palosi, and Whitman) all due to candidates they supported in the past or even where they went to college.

    What I worry about is that there may be as many liberal women who will never ever vote for Condi Rice (a candidate you can support) as there are who will never ever vote for M obama or N Pelosi. I fear the vote for most women most of the time will work in every election type except the presidential one. For the presidential elections, most may not be enough because only one woman can win the presidency at at time; unlike governors, senators and mayors. Women must vote as a block as others have to achieve a position at the presidents table.

    One clear example of what I'm talking about was the Clarence Thomas nomination. If there ever was a justice harmful to African Americans and the causes and issues important to them, it was justice Thomas. Yet all of the polls at the time indicated strong support for his nomination from the AA community; which is probably why he made it. The only other way it can happen for women candidates is the way you hate to talk about; that is, in a generic, natural way where women need allies like minorities or white men etc. which could take a lot longer.

    I do hope I am wrong because most women most of the time, is natural and good and the way leaders are supposed to be elected.

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