Monday, April 21, 2008

Flaming feminists... Take 2

Linda Hirshman over at talks about how Senator Clinton is apparently emerging as a battleground between mothers and daughters - and that some younger women are supporting Senator Obama to break away from their mothers. She says many feminist Obama-backers are facing intense pressure from men, and are becoming aware of the misogyny that older generation feminists like Robin Morgan warned them about... Hirshman also says she can't find a "vagina litmus test" that says women must support Senator Clinton.

Read my take on Robin Morgan's essay here. I am pretty sure Morgan says "goodbye" to all women who may not support Senator Clinton because of various reasons, including the fact that she may be unelectable. Or not likable. Or (blasphemy!) may actually find someone else... more inspiring! A real visionary! More bearable as President!
- That sure sounds like a "vagina litmus test."
- Democrats nominated experienced - but unlikeable - men in 2000 and 2004, and look where that got us. Why should Senator Clinton experience a different fate? Just because she's a Clinton? A woman? No, seriously- tell me why.

Hirshman also says: "In her attack on the mammas in the Guardian recently, youthful feminist author Michelle Goldberg described Morgan's warning about the silencing as "hysterical," meaning driven insane by your uterus. Does Goldberg now think Traister and Fortini have been infected with the women's disease?"
- If female writers use the word "hysterical," does that have a very different connotation than if a male (moi!) were to use it? I mean, if I say someone's hysterical, I am not thinking of a woman being driven out of control due to a chemical imbalance. I am just thinking of someone who's yelling and/or crying, historical connotations be damned. Maybe I am just not PC-enough...?

Finally, about the various acts of misogyny that are apparently coming out everyday. If that alludes to various calls for Senator Clinton to get out of the race - made mostly by men - then:
(a) I don't support those calls.
(b) But put the shoe on the other foot. Suppose the positions were reversed, with Senator Clinton leading by ~150 delegates, with no practical chance of being overtaken by Senator Obama. Then the pressure would be immense on Senator Obama to get out of the race, with the carrot of a vice-presidential slot, to avoid the present intense friction between Democrats (read the comments sections of major newspaper articles - they are filled with absolute bile, including horrendous accusations against the ObamaS). And dare I say it, he would have been forced to accept. After all, the race started with Senator Clinton as the inevitable, favored, establishment candidate. Which is also precisely the reason why the calls for her to withdraw have been largely muted.

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