More On Why I'm Glad Hillary Ran, and Hope We Keep Talking About Gender


Katie knows what she's talking about:


Ah, but didn't Obama have to put up with the race/religion card being played out in the media? How many times did we have to endure the "Is he a Muslim or not?" question being thrown out, or the "Is he black or not, or simply not black enough?" question. You may decry what was seen as sexism towards her, but I would hope at the same time, you would decry the racist claptrap that was being thrown at Obama as well.

It is not just simply sexism that was being played out. The media did indeed seem to gravitate towards Obama as its darling, but they are still guilty of using the same tactics against him as was used against Hillary. What made the difference was in the way both campaigns responded to what was being thrown at them. Hillary blew it, her campaign staff blew it, and in the end, that is what ultimately doomed her, sexism or not.

Mr. Nighttime:

Thanks for entirely missing the point of Couric's comments, thereby proving her point. Really, thanks. I have supported Obama all along; I have posted something explaining one reason why I supported him over her and also something commenting on the nasty rhetoric directed towards him. But none of that changes the fact that Couric is right that if the racial equivalent of an "iron my shirt" poster had appeared at an Obama rally, there would have been outrage, from just about every quarter but the KKK. Thanks for refusing to see that. Seriously, thanks. It's really useful to have the dynamic Couric's describing enacted on my own blog.

Did you watch the video clip I posted yesterday? the one discussing the fact that there were many reasons why Hillary didn't win? the one that pointed out that although there might indeed be many reasons why she didn't win, that didn't mean there was no reason to discuss how sexism affected her campaign? Did you, by any chance, happen to notice the headline I included, "I'm Glad Hillary Lost, But I'm Also Glad She Ran"?

I'm guessing not, but if you did, well, I don't see how you could have imagined your comments would add anything new or substantive or insightful to the conversation. Then again, that's the point: people remain blind to issues of sexism in this country. Sexism just isn't there, and well, if it is, by all means, find a way to discount or dismiss it.

Yeah. Thanks again.

Thanks for entirely missing the point of Couric's comments, thereby proving her point."

No, I understood her points very clearly, thank you very much. I don't need to be patronized. Nor am I suggesting that there are no reasons to discuss sexism in relation to how it still exists in this country and was exhibited in the campaign. That said, and perhaps you could be so kind to explain, as you seem to think I "don't get it," why overt sexism is any different than racism that is not overt. What Couric was describing was the "in your face" mode of discrimination.

Anyone who was paying attention saw it with regards to Obama. Yes, if there were say KKK t-shirts, or t-shirts suggesting slavery at Obama rallies, or other overt racist statements directed at him, then the media would have been all over it. Then again, what did we get from them? Things such as "Obama/Osama" quotes being splayed all over news programs. Please explain to me how that is in any way less overt than a t-shirt at a rally?

Perhaps my poorly formed male brain doesn't get it. Then again, perhaps I do get it quite well, and just don't accept that one form of discrimination should take center stage over another, irrespective of who it is being directed at.

perhaps you could be so kind to explain, as you seem to think I "don't get it," why overt sexism is any different than racism that is not overt.

easy and obvious answer: because one is overt and one is not.


What Couric was describing was the "in your face" mode of discrimination.

the point being that "in your face" insults and discrimination are acceptable when it comes to gender, but not to race. That's how much our culture still hates women, and how much it's still OK to hate women.

Again, duh.

Seriously, dude, if this is the best you can do, you have to see why it's a complete waste of my time to attempt a conversation with you. You are all bent out of shape at the fact that I patronized you, but you've said more insulting things to me, on my blog, and your initial comment was pretty fucking patronizing, as it ignored a complex response inherent in my support of Obama and distrust of Hillary. I won't put up with it. You can apologize, or you can go away, at least on this issue. Those are your only options. If you want to argue that "overt sexism" and "racism that is not overt" are the same thing, you'll need to do it elsewhere.

I have nothing to apologize for on this issue, and if you remember, I have apologized in the past for a certain rant.

I'm sorry if you don't get my point. Tell you what, I'll find another sandbox to play in as you find me distasteful.......Oh, and btw, no, it is not acceptable to have in your face insults to women, just so we're clear on that point.

I have nothing to apologize for on this issue

Yes, actually, you do.

I have apologized in the past for a certain rant.

the fact that you've apologized for something in the past in no way negates the possibility that you might need to apologize again.

I'm sorry if you don't get my point

you mean the point that there's no difference between overt sexism and racism that is not overt?

Gee. I wonder why I didn't "get" that. Especially since the one example you site, the linking of the name Obama with the name Osama, deals with religion, not race.


Oh, and btw, no, it is not acceptable to have in your face insults to women, just so we're clear on that point.

Then why did you take issue with Couric's analysis of how it happened and was excused? 'Cause that's what you did.

Tell you what, I'll find another sandbox to play in as you find me distasteful.......

Dude. Please. Check a style book for information on how to use ellipses. Your misuse of them is something that has always driven me nuts.

I am reminded of the famous 1892 quote by African American feminist Anna Julia Cooper. Addressing African American clergymen, Cooper stated, "Only the black woman can say 'when and where I enter, in the quiet, undisputed dignity of my womanhood, without violence and without suing or special patronage, then and there the whole . . . race enters with me.'" Cooper highlights at the turn of the twentieth century the problem of the twenty-first century. Sexism is about hatred and power. Racism is also about hatred and power. Cooper articulated the ways in which racism and sexism are not exclusive power dynamics; instead, she emphasized the intersection. Couric is not presenting an either/or proposition. She is instead looking at how the primary race was couched in terms that emphasized the inequalities of coverage and problematic characterizations that occurred during the campaign. At no point was Obama's gender called into question, despite the fact that historically African American masculinity has been constructed as antithetical to whiteness in troubling ways. Clinton's gender was often the unspoken foundation for critique and insult. Though I support Obama (and I might add enthusiastically), the coverage of Clinton -- which was undeniably inflected by sexism and intense gender hatred -- forces me to consider how we not only live in a racialized world but one that is thoroughly genderized. There was no discussion of how women still make less money than their male counterparts despite the passage of the Equal Pay Act in 1963; there was no substantive discussion about how gender played a role in representation; and, there was no real confrontation about why women, who constitute the majority of individuals in the U.S., still lack the same political agency of their male counterparts. I have to agree with Holly on the lack of attention paid to sexism in the campaign. And, I have to push the idea that Clinton's campaign, just like Obama's, is not about transcendence. Just because Obama came out the candidate does not mean racism is over; Clinton's relative success does not mean we have conquered sexism. Both campaigns highlight the extent to which we have not overcome either modality, yet the media's willingness to engage one over the other is telling and disturbing.

Thank you, CSV, for that insightful and interesting comment.

I don't know what else to say. I am so fucking sick of these people, like Mr. Nighttime, who claim they're opposed to oppression but in reality seem allergic to any discussion of sexism. I have become allergic to such people. So I really do appreciate the depth of your response.

I like people who think that ellipses are a lot of dots........

I almost hijacked your comments, then remembered that I have my own blog. Ha.

I was all ready to vote for Obama in the Oregon primary until I heard Hillary speak about the issues towards the end of the campaign. Previously I had only READ about her campaign. Her passion came through and impressed me, convincing me to vote for her.

In my opinion she has done a great job in breaking the ground for the next woman to come along and actually get the nomination. Equal rights for women has always been slow in coming - even slower than racial equality. Black men could vote before women (1870 vs. 1920). Additionally, the 1960's were largely successful in achieving racial equality, while 20 years later, the ERA was still unsuccessful in ratification. So it makes sense that we will have a black president before a woman president, but it may take another generation before the masses of people are comfortable with a strong, independent woman leading them.

Hi GMA--

thank you, thank you (sincerely this time) for getting it. I agree with your assessment. And while I wasn't persuaded to vote for Hillary, I think the entire world will be a better place when Americans aren't so threatened by the strong women they create.

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This page contains a single entry by Holly published on June 12, 2008 11:18 AM.

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