Things I’m enjoying right now…
Stuff White People Like – this blog is hysterical. Currently, an explanation for why white people like rugby, and also, why white people are into socialized medicine are in plain view.
Salon has two really good commentaries on the Obama v. Clinton campaign drama. The first, is an essay about the subtle and not so subtle sexism and misogyny among male supporters of Obama toward Clinton.
This article captures a lot of what I’ve been feeling about this campaign. I’m leaning toward Obama, even though, as a woman, I’d really like to be able to vote for Clinton – but – I just don’t like her. I’m not sure I’m as in love with Obama as his more exuberant supporters either, but I find I have a visceral dislike of Hillary, that smacks to me of my own brand of subtle sexism. Hillary is exactly the kind of woman who benefited from first wave feminism – “…the [feminist] movement of which Clinton has become emblematic -– not because it was her bailiwick, but because she has been exactly the kind of woman that feminism made room for: ambitious, ball-busting, high-earning, untrained in the finer arts of hair care, and unwilling to play dumber (or nicer) than she is. We don’t expect Obama to play nice or dumb, do we? So, why do I so dislike those same qualities in Hillary? I mean…there are other things I object to in terms of her politics, her stance on Iraq being just one of them, but my stronger reaction is that I just don’t like HER. (Of course, I REALLY don’t like McCain either, and he’s a guy…) The article is VERY interesting, saying how easy it is, because of Clinton’s politics, to obscure sexism and misogyny as a dislike of her policies, yet what many men are saying is “She’s a bitch.” And then trying to back track that as a non-sexist remark, somehow related to her politics, when really, it’s talking about how they perceive her in a leadership role as a woman.
Not everyone feels that the chauvinism aimed at Clinton is subtle. Thirty-three-year-old actress Molly Ward said, “There is a frustration I feel professionally about how women who are ambitious are perceived as ruthless. We’ve made rules, we’ve set standards, we’ve put Virginia Woolf on the curriculum, and done things to make women feel it’s OK to go after your dreams. But there is still this basic problem with women being criticized for ambition.”
Also interesting is the idea of “post-feminism” – and how younger women (under 30…DAMMIT..I don’t count anymore!) feel torn between voting for a woman in principal, as old guard feminists like Steinhem and Morgan have been hollering for them to do, and wanting to be able to choose the best candidate. But many young women, feeling gender shouldn’t be an issue, are perceiving this “something” in the strong reactions against Hillary. A little long, but a really interesting read.
The second Salon article is another about the Obama v. Clinton campaigns, and it looks at how race issues and voting patterns may impact the ultimate outcome of the primaries:The rubes and the elites. It starts off with a discussion of Obama’s recent gaff in denigrating small town working class whites, as bitter, in a closed meeting with a wealthy audience in San Francisco.
I found this article to be VERY interesting and I learned some things about voting patterns in this country, and why democrats are losing votes by continuing to alienate small town Americans by portraying them as “Rubes. Rednecks. Low-information voters. Beer-track voters. NASCAR man. Bubba. Retro America.” Apparently, Obama believes low information voters are either too stupid, or too apathetic to vote for what really matters, and they allow their “bitterness” to sway their votes toward things that give them comfort and pleasure in their daily lives (guns, churches, and/or anti-trade antiip immigrant issue).
But in the fine analysis, it appears that the only democratic candidates who have been successful since JFK, are those who find a way to get white, southern, small town Americans to buy in to their candidacies, by appealing to the things that really matter to them: healthcare and the economy.
It has been suggested that race will be the deciding factor – that whites who will vote against Obama because he is a black man will kill his chances at a successful run – but it really may be more an issue of economics and perceived elitism on the part of candidates like Obama.
Ok..now that I’ve depressed you with those two articles, treat yourself to something really fun and silly over at The Wild Pomegranate about one woman’s experience with bad kissers, and what makes a good one.