Amanda Fortini: "Bitch and the Ditz"


November 18, 2008 (contains c-word as a quote)

MS AMANDA FORTINI writes about Senator Clinton and Governor Palin as the “Bitch and the Ditz: How the Year of the Woman reinforced the two most pernicious sexist stereotypes and actually set women back.”

I feel for this poor unenlightened girl. My guess is she white, voted for obama (and doesn’t know anything about him), is younger than 35, grew up in a privileged setting and the year she was born she couldn’t have gotten into the university she went to and that prior to Title IX she wouldn’t have been able to do the job she is now. I would even venture a guess that she took a class under the title “Women’s Studies”.

It’s quite humorous in a way. What does she know about “setting women back”? She did so with her very title – she’s the one connecting the stereotypes to the women. She has been afforded every opportunity because of Senator Clinton’s generation, including the ability to rant about something she knows nothing of. It reminds me of the sadly delusional
MS KLIFF, who wrote: “Sorry, Hillary – girls already rule.”

If that were true, Senator Clinton would be ruling. It would not have even been close if they were both white men. And had she had a resume as thin as barry’s, she wouldn’t have even made it to Iowa. Yet she is “setting women back”.

Ms Fortini, where do you think you are and how do you think you got there? On you’re own merit? And what, exactly, are you doing to move women forward? You do realize that is up to your generation, don’t you? You cannot speak of setting women back when you don’t know or appreciate how far women have come. You have proven your ignorance by referring to Senator Clinton and Governor Palin without their hard-earned titles.

Senator Clinton’s generation had to fight for whatever advancement they achieved. They fought so you could believe that gender equality is a birth right. So you could choose to work outside the home and own your own business. So you could take for granted your right to choose.

How many women do you know were made sterile or died because of back alley abortions? Had entrails thrown at them by Evangelicals? Had their reproduction decided for them by their husbands?

My guess is you weren’t even born when Senator Clinton was a member of the Nixon impeachment inquiry staff, that you hadn’t yet learned how to talk when Senator Clinton founded Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families, were still in grade school when she he was named one of the 100 most influential attorneys (twice) and were just entering college when she was taking on the Chinese like no American man or women had prior (or since), declaring in no uncertain terms women’s rights are human rights. Rights you clearly have taken for granted. Rights you ridicule in your article. And I am certain you know nothing of what Senator Clinton accomplished in Arkansas concerning children and education.

And yet, you feel comfortable declaring that Senator Clinton has “set women back”.

You can no more write about Senator Clinton’s generation than I can about ungrateful girls who think they got where they are on their own merit. Do you think you haven’t filled a quota along the way? That your appearance and relative shrillness hasn’t influenced your grades, job opportunities and compensation?

Are you so naive as to believe you are equal in the eyes of society to men?

You have attacked Senator Clinton on all fronts, Ms Fortini, without once thinking that she couldn’t be a “bitch” unless she had been treated like one. And who is perpetuating it by writing such an article?

Where is positivity? Where is the acknowledgment and congratulations that Senator Clinton got further than anyone thought possible? Where is the perspective from wise women, who were born before they had the right to vote?

Women were no more included in the Constitution than black men – neither could vote. There is not a single black man alive who was born without the right to vote. But there are black women. Black men have been voting since 1870. More black men – former slaves – held office immediately after they got the right to vote than now. It took anther fifty years for women’s suffrage.

No matter what barry considers himself – he is a man – and a man has always been president. He does resemble those presidents on the dollar bills – Senator Clinton does not.

The notion, Ms Fortini, that Senator Clinton is “setting women back” is as delusional as your belief that you are treated and given the same respect as men, including and especially by your male peers.

How, exactly, is your article meant to inspire younger girls to want to be like you? How is attacking two women of separate generations that preceded yours, women who had the courage to step forward on the national stage (qualified or not) working to advance women?

How are your words any different than those of misogynists Chris Matthews, Herr Olbermann or Jonjon Alter?

And this:

“The assumption was that these “18 million cracks in the highest glass ceiling,” as Clinton put it, would advance the prospects of female achievement and gender equality. It hasn’t exactly worked out that way.””Many will say we’ve come a long way this year. The truth is we have a long way to go.”

You do realize, Ms Fortini, that moving women forward is your job and that tearing other women down is not the way to get there? As for this:

“Never mind that it’s impossible to imagine a male candidate mentioning fatherhood as the source of his readiness to be the nation’s second-in-command.”

It’s not impossible to imagine when it has already been done. Vice presidential debate, Senator Biden: “But the notion that somehow, because I’m a man, I don’t know what it’s like to raise two kids alone, I don’t know what it’s like to have a child you’re not sure is going to — is going to make it — I understand. I understand, as well as, with all due respect, the governor or anybody else, what it’s like for those people sitting around that kitchen table. And guess what? They’re looking for help. They’re looking for help. They’re not looking for more of the same.”

And he did it while tearing up.
Had it been Governor Palin tearing up, Jesse Jackson, Jr. have demanded another investigation. Instead, Governor Palin was ripped apart for not having shown some empathy. And had she?

Did anyone question barry for not showing empathy towards Senator McCain’s torture-inflicted injuries when he made and approved the ad mocking Senator McCain’s inability to use a computer?

Ms Fortini, what did you think as a woman when Senator Clinton was referred to as “It”? Have you written an article on how little society has advanced when Glenn Beck can call a former first lady and presidential candidate “It” and not be fired? And Imus?

Were you even aware of his comment?

Have you watched these indisputably sexist videos?

Have you written about The Double Standard as pertains barry and his opponents? About Bill Maher speculating how much Hillary’s cunt was worth? Would you have written something had he said it in reference to Mrs Obama’s cunt?

Ask yourself, Ms Fortini, who is moving women forward by remaining silent and selectively speaking up only when the issue involves race. An injustice to one woman is an injustice to all women. Prejudice is prejudice, and there should be no degree to how they are tolerated or addressed.

Who is displaying ignorance by blaming the women attacked for their stereotypes?

Who is “setting women back” by not addressing these issues and choosing instead to focus blame and assign cliches?

Women cannot be “set back” if they haven’t moved forward in the first place. And women will never move forward unless the next generation chooses to understand and respect the struggles of the women who went before them.

Have you pondered what Mrs Rosa Parks would have felt about this election? What her thoughts would have been on how the female candidates were treated and how they were branded racists by the self-proclaimed Transcender of Race? Would Mrs Parks have believed America has take a full step forward towards achieving a More Perfect Union? Or just a sidestep?

Perhaps in your next article, Ms Fortini, you can demonstrate an understanding of sexism and misogyny as regards the treatment of Senator Clinton and Governor Palin. Maybe even comment on The Double Standard both of them faced and the hierarchy of prejudice in America.

Perhaps then your pronouncement would have basis and meaning.

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