Wednesday, January 16, 2008

CC is all about the peacemaking

I really approve of the Democratic candidates making nice at the Nevada debate last night. I don't understand why we have to spend so much time tearing the candidates that we don't like up at the PRIMARIES. It seems like the definition of counterproductive.

Romney's win in Michigan leaves the Republican race more wide open than ever. I hope we can pick a candidate and get behind them.

This very moment, I'm leaning toward Obama. But at the same time, I'm really appalled by the sexism in the way people are treating Clinton. That Edwards has in the past painted himself as a "woman's candidate" seems pretty laughable at this point.

TheCSO and I were talking about this the other night, and I brought up the incident a few months ago where somebody asked McCain "How do we beat the bitch?" and he launched right into his response without even mentioning that he didn't see her that way or that "bitch" was not a proper way to describe one's female opponents.

At that time, I was making the point that if the supporter had been talking about Obama and asked "How do we beat the (insert racial invective here)," I'm quite certain McCain would have commented on the terminology.

TheCSO pointed out that the right has had sixteen years to paint Clinton as a bitch, so at this point lots of right-wing people are used to thinking of her this way.

I'm still confused on that one. Don't bitches leave cheating husbands and embarrass them rather than sticking by them? Do bitches raise daughters like Chelsea, who is easily the most well-adjusted and successful presidential child in decades?

And besides, if for sixteen years, the Republican party had been painting Obama as a "lazy (insert racial invective here)" then I would think somebody would have called racism on it and made them cool it.


Ps. I'm rethinking the "Midlife Crisis" issue. I don't think I expressed what I meant well, and what I meant might have been wrong, too. Thanks for keeping me honest.


Anonymous said...

I think a part of the "bitch" thing has to do with the person. When Margaret Thatcher ws running the UK the word didn't show up over here (or even over there) unless it was used as a compliment.

The right's real problem with HRC is that she was a Goldwater girl who became a Democrat. It's like members of cults who talk about the people who leave.

On a different matter....if you look at the historical record, most presidential children (especially the girls) who grow up in the White House turn out pretty good. A lot of it depends on the age of the child when their parent enters the WH.

Chalicechick said...

Fair enough, though Chelsea certainly seemed to have an unusually smooth young adulthood and turned into an unusually successful person, capitalizing minimally on her parents' fame and riding the waves of media nastiness* with aplomb.

As Wayne and Garth put it way back in 1992, "While it's true that adolescence has been thus far unkind, we think she's gonna be a future fox."

Looking at other White House teenagers of the last few decades, Amy Carter had a wild youth and is now living completely away from the spotlight, Maureen Reagan rode Daddy's coattails wherever she could and had all kinds of mental problems, the Bush twins partied a lot and took six months to get jobs.

IMHO, if the results of Hillary's motherhood are any indication, her personality isn't the issue.


*Rush Limbaugh called her "the White House dog" on national TV when she was 13 years old, for one of many examples.

Anonymous said...


The Right-Wingers always seem to resort to name calling and mud slinging when they know they are hopelessly out classed. In regards to the restraint on the Democrat's side, I am honestly very impressed; the issues is what politics should be about - not name calling. Kudos in pointing out the sexism in the media regarding Clinton.


Anonymous said...

It took the Bush twins ELEVEN months to get jobs.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you on how well adjusted Chelsea is.

If we look at only the PKs who grew up in the WH during the 20th century, you will see that most of them turned out really well. Alice Roosevelt (Teddy's daughter) was a DC maven until her death in 1980. Franklin and Elenor's kids all lead really responsible lives far away from the spotlight. LBJs daughters don't seem to have had a rough time during or after. The same could be said for the Nixon daughters. Amy was a little wild, but would she have been different if she didn't grow up in the WH? Chelsea was the last one to grow up in the WH and she would have been the same whether she was in the WH or the Arkansas governor's manse.

Remember, a lot of PKs didn't grow up in the WH. Eisenhower's children didn't. Neither did the Ford children. Except for Ron Jr., none of the Reagan children grew up there (Maureen was long grown; remember she was his child with Jane Wyman) and Ron Jr. was almost grown. Jenna and Barbara Bush were on their way to college when George W. was elected. Any of their wild stuff had little to do with the WH.

But I do think that media attention on PKs does affect them; that's part of the reason I think Chelsea is on the campaign trail but not speaking.

With so many of the presidential canidates having younger children, it will be interesting to see how the media treats the children of whoever wins.

PG said...

Do you think the Richard Pryor- Chevy Chase SNL word association skit about how there aren't as many racist terms for white people as a whole ("honky" was the main one they could come up with; things like "cracker," "redneck" etc. are region- and class-specific) as there are for black people applies to the male-female thing as well? That is, there are a lot of words used to derogate women; are there an equal number specifically to derogate men?

As for Thatcher's only being called a bitch as a compliment, I disagree -- note the "Ditch the Bitch" slogan of Labour 1983.

Comrade Kevin said...

Chelsea must have had a great nanny. That's all I can say.

Sure, I concede to you that there's a sexist undercurrent against Hillary right now, but it seems motivated by her numerous flaws rather than her status as a person lacking a Y chromosome.

Such language is never justified but I rarely see it uniformly applied to other female candidates running for elective office. It's never deserved when you hear it but I understand the implication. So many elements of discrimination are attacked in semantical terms first and foremost, which doesn't even begin to address the roots of why offensive characterizations exist in the first place.

If Obama was perceived in uniformly negative terms, then among a few racists you'd see a particularly offensive epithet tumble out of mouths and you'd see most people have no problem at all criticizing him by using other, less offensive semantics.

If he wins the Presidency, rest assured you'll see some very colorful language criticizing him for his failings.