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Monday, February 11, 2008

Woman Bashing

I just read Stanley Fish' interesting column on Hillary-bashing (thanks to Susanna Schellenberg for the link). Though not his main focus Fish draws attention to the fact that sexism is not always a crime committed by old bearded men. Women are just as actively engaged in the recent Hillary-bashing as their male companions. Perhaps sexism is not the driving force behind the hatred but it seems at least partially responsible. Unlike their male counterparts women may not come right into your living room and say that Hillary is a power-addict who has "pimped out" her daughter. No -- female woman bashers won't do that. That's too blatant, not nearly as effective. Female woman bashers tend to be more subtle and more insidious. It's the high-school phenomenon. Girls who put girls in their "right" place. Smart girls were never in fashion -- for whatever reason. Perhaps it's time for a change. As one of Fish's commenters nicely puts it:

Sure, don’t we all hate those smart girls who always make the right move, the teachers pets, the one with all the answers, the one who may be smarter than us? But that is who we need in leadership!


Anonymous said...

I'm not familiar with the alleged Hillary-bashing; actually I keep seeing claims that she is currently the most popular figure in the administration, way ahead even of Obama. On the other hand, she - along with Robert Gates - is eminently "bashable" (I didn't choose the metaphor). Her absurd insistence on calling the head of the Syrian police state Bashar Assad a "reformer", even as his massacres surpass those of Mubarak, Ben-Ali, Saleh, and al-Khalifa added together, and are closing in on the tally of Gaddafi himself, should have caused a scandal in the U.S. Her outrageous misjudgments and lies, from Bosnia to Palestine (remember when she bizarrely dreamt up a story of having landed in Sarajevo amid sniper fire, when the trip she referred to was actually AFTER the war... that her husband did much to prolong with her apparent acquiescence) made her appointment an appalling (and obviously political) choice. Given how objectionable yet popular she is, one wonders whether the politically correct whimpering about "Hillary-bashing" is not the real double standard here.

Brit Brogaard said...

Thank you very much for your comments. The original post was written in 2008. Things have changed since then. So, I don't have strong opinions here.