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« Best of the Worst | Main | Feminism, Part 2: 2008 »

September 13, 2008


Only you can mix theater and politics like you do and have it come out making perfect sense!

Danny, this past year in politics has been one that I've felt deeply and painfully. I'm an emotional being, no doubt about it, but I felt pained intellectually as well. Over the course of Bush's reign, I have felt angry, frustrated, powerless, disgusted, and more. When the tide began to turn, there was a feeling of affirmation and solidarity, but wow -- there was so much hostility expressed in the Dem. primaries that I had to step back.

Had to -- as in I found it terribly painful to see Dems. rip each others choice apart as if real human beings were not involved. There was a Bush-like chill and a Rove-like assault being launched in the enthusiasm for change, and it stunted (for me) the brief feeling of unity.

Now that we're here, with our four candidates, my disgust is only growing. (Did you see Jon Stewart's piece on Palin and her mouthpieces?). I am stunned in the worst way that Palin has been so green-lighted and excused -- esp. by women. The facts, which are plentiful and horrific, don't seem to matter as much as much as the PR, and I am absolutely frightened by the prospect of a McCain/Palin win.

I'm frightened MORE, though, by the continuing blindness quarter-thought reasons, religious fervor, and single-issue obsessions that continue to dominate the American political process. Are we becoming dumber as a nation? Are we that susceptible to marketing? Has opinion overtaken objectivity in the news? Are political talking heads and their opinions what Americans are relying on to make their voting choices?

I'm just scared.

I'm not surprised to see the increasingly aggressive coverage on Palin but I don't think that has anything to do with her gender -- at least not in the major news outlets. After all when the media smells blood in the water it becomes a feeding frenzy (e.g., Britney Spears, OJ Simpson and Bill Clinton to name a few).

In my opinion the Republican talking points this time around just stretched to truth a bit too far and the press just didn't want to be party to supporting that so they're making a story out of it. My bet is in a couple of weeks no one will be talking about Palin, just like they're not talking about Biden.

Hi, Danny -- It's the "blurry" Sandra Jackson-Opoku! I have my name set on Google Alerts and your blog came through my email today. It's great to catch up with what you and everyone else is doing these days, though I was saddened to hear about Sue Mahoney's death. I last saw her maybe 7-8 years ago and promised I'd keep in touch, and somehow time slipped away. What a shame. Sue was quite a gal.

My biggest reaction to the choice of Sarah Palin as McCain's running mate has to do with Hillary. While the Republicans seem to tout Palin as a smasher of “the glass ceiling,” it seems like a slap-in-the-face to women like Hillary and Barbara Boxer who have been marching around the halls of old boy power and really changing things. Putting Sarah Palin up there like some Rebublican version of Eleanor Roosevelt seems disingenuous at best and downright vile at worst. Plus there’s just something Stepford Wifeian about it. Phew...I could go on but will spare you.

I love 9 to 5. It was a remarkable movie to see when I was thirteen and ERA was strong in the news. And it was SO funny. You’re right, Dabney Coleman plays the best sexist boss from hell in film history.

I was always told that feminism was about women having choices to be whoever they wanted. How can that be bad? I consider myself a feminist.

I would love to see a president and running mate who were both intelligent and qualified. It would also be great if they knew about the policies and doctrines of the president they supposedly support.

I too had the privilege of sharing Sue Mahoney as a boss and a friend. What a great, great woman she was. And Danny it is ironic that I would be the one in the photo handing Sue a schedule that would terrify her. Perhaps it was blank, as that would be more my style.

Don't get me started on feminism. I guess I'm just an old curmudgeon now because I still consider myself a proud and defiant feminist and liberal.

And finally, Sandra Jackson-Opoku, (I'm typing your whole name so that you can find this post too) how the heck are you? It's been years. Still love you and miss you.

I have to admit that while I ususally thoroughly read and savor your particularly poignant and well-crafted posts, the issue of "feminism" and the ugly, unfair connotations the word conjures up for so many sent me straight to the Comments section. I recently posted a link to a rousing, concise op-ed piece by Gloria Steinem to my Facebook profile, simply because I love her style of writing so, and I felt it would be an easily-digestible and thought-provoking piece, even for those of my friends not inclined to follow politics (it essentially evaluated McCain's motives in his VP choice, but did not attack Palin herself). It was not a 'Chicken Little' diatribe like Ensler's, not a rant, nothing to ruffle any major feathers. Imagine my complete awe (and minor offense), then, when a good friend forwarded it to her contacts with the sweet preface, "I'm not a feminist, but..." My ire was nearly impossible to suppress. Not a feminist!? Not of the desire to place value on yourself and your rights?! I was, and am, at a loss for words, only because so many arguments rush forward at once, a cogent rebuttal is unlikely. I guess I'm aghast that so few women, or men, for that matter, my contemporaries, see pro-feminist attitude as an empowering life view rather than an angry, vindictive, militant lifestyle, replete with moral laxity and endless bra-burning and protesting. (I've been told that's the bulk of what feminists do...I must've not gotten the handbook.)

As a young woman who strove - who still strives - to understand feminism, its history, and its implications in my life exclusive of a formal school setting, I am indebted to the discoveries I've made, particularly in the words and works of great women who came before me, just as I am stringent in my assertion, my belief, that everyone would benefit if this simple life view were adopted by many, if it was taken to heart. To me, it boils down to equality, dignity, according each sex an equal measure of respect, consideration, and allowance, which is perhaps an embellished version of the dictionary description Danny so eloquently offered above.

That a self-professed pro-feminist like myself (arguably too young to have made significant contributions to the Second Wave of Feminism, but one who reveres and upholds the concept, who relished 'The Feminine Mystique', and who was liberated by reruns of 'That Girl') would automatically be considered "someone who is cavalier about having multiple abortions and uses the procedure as birth control, never giving it a second thought" - this calculation is beyond my comprehension; this is so base and unfounded a stereotype that my heart breaks a little to read it.

I guess what my blog-rant essentially means to say is: Thank you, Danny Miller, for a thought-provoking post on an issue dear to my heart, as so many of your contributions are. I relish reading your take on things and am grateful for your online presence.

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