On politics and feminism

I need to confess that I did not not watch the GOP debate last night, just as I missed the most recent DNC debate (equal time or lack thereof). So I’m sure that I missed many important things that the candidates felt the need to share, but I did pay attention, read the transcripts, and I’ve seen a few clips, and, because I’m me, I have a few thoughts of my own.

First of all – strangest opening ever. Not sure what was worse- Carson and Trump both missing their entrance OR the moderators completely forgetting about Kasich. And then pretty much blaming the loud applause for all of the above.

And then there’s the moment, or all 4 of them, that probably cost Marco Rubio his shot at the presidency (or this time at least, because I think that as long as he avoids being too much like Jindal his day may yet come). My advice to Rubio – when someone calls you out – repeatedly – for continually using the same 25 second canned speech, then you might want to think before you next speak and choose your words carefully. Not a fan, at all, of Chris Christie, but he really did the job there.

And then there’s torture – because why not. Senator Cruz – waterboarding, in fact, does meet the technical definition of torture, but I’m pleased that you don’t intend to use it frequently if elected. Mr. Trump – not surprised that you feel waterboarding is the least you would do if elected. It just seems to fit the persona that you’ve created for yourself so well. And we don’t need to worry too much about the whole immorality thing, or even about the fact that it doesn’t work all that well anyway – according to our own intelligence reviews, by the way. Because you already know that you’ll be the best president ever and that everything you do will be great.

And still, John Kasich is the only sane sounding one in the bunch.

On the Democratic side, as the battle between Clinton and Sanders heats up now that O’Malley has exited the race – well.. that will play out as it play out. Clinton is the more mainstream candidate, by a lot, but my heart is with Sanders. And that brings me to what may be the most galling of all the pro-Clinton anti-Sanders rubbish I’ve heard. Vote for Clinton for feminism?

“The main thing is to remain oneself, under any circumstances; that was and is our common purpose.”
― Madeleine Albright

Sorry, ladies. As much as I respect Madeline Albright and Gloria Steinem – and I do – and I owe all the feminists that came before me a debt of gratitude because I have a career, and a family, and I was able to make life choices that my mother could not. But here I sit, proud post-feminist rapidly aging boomer, on the cusp of retirement (& happily beginning to retool for a second post-retirement career because I can), wondering when the hell being feminist REQUIRED me to only support women? When preferring Sanders is indicative of a need to please the “boys” (& ironically, my husband is a full-on Clinton supporter – so that doesn’t play well in my household). Being feminist means, yes, supporting my daughters to fulfill their dreams, supporting and mentoring the younger women I work with, and seeking the same opportunities, and salaries, as the men I work with. But it also, in its most positive sense, means equal opportunity for everyone – it doesn’t mean that women are superior to men, and it doesn’t mean that merely being female is a reason to get ahead in life. It may be a factor – there are, after all, men who will never vote for a woman because gender does matter. But it does not mean that my entire set of life decisions is predicated on my gender. Based on that logic, Carly Fiorina, terrifying as she is, should be seriously considered as a viable candidate because she’s a woman. And I refuse, I simply refuse to be sucked down that rabbit hole. I am eternally grateful for having grown up in a family that encouraged my independence of thought (and action),  and I am not going to turn my back on that independence to satisfy someone else’s notion what what feminism is supposed to mean to me. No matter how much I respect their accomplishments.

“A feminist is anyone who recognizes the equality and full humanity of women and men.” ―Gloria Steinem

 

 

 

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4 thoughts on “On politics and feminism”

  1. thanks for taking the time to read & comment. I think that the approach you have of trying to lay out the relevant information in a simple form is a great idea for getting teens involved – best of luck with it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I enjoyed reading your article on politics and how you have nicely integrated ideas about feminism, it was a new take on the matter that is rarely focused on. It would mean a lot to me if you checked out my new politics blog and gave it some support. I’m an aspiring journalist and am using this blog to gain writing experience in the online world.

    Liked by 1 person

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