Feminist Friday: Yes, Virginia: That is Sexism.
Posted August 26, 2011on:
Some will probably disagree, but in my opinion, Michele Bachmann (R-NoFreakingWayIsShe EverGoingToBeTheNominee) doesn’t deserve a lot of attention from anyone. (This is why you can count my posts about her on the fingers of one hand.) Yes, she may be a decent debater, and present herself in a somewhat normal-seeming manner, but she is a fringe candidate, even in the Republican Party, and she should be treated as such. However, Bachmann is such an easily-ridiculed figure that some female “Feminist” pundits just can’t help themselves. Cue the sexism, stat!
No, I’m not talking about that infamous Newsweek cover, which (to me anyway) looked like most pictures of Michele – including her self-selected publicity shot, which I’ve included in this post to make my point. I’m talking about self-proclaimed feminist Katha Pollitt of The Nation, whose latest opus is entitled, “Michele Bachmann, Wife-In-Chief?.” (I swear I am not making this up.) Katha boldly asks the question we are all dying to have answered: If Michele Bachmann were President, would her husband be the one in charge?
If you vote for Michele Bachmann are you really voting for her husband, Marcus, the pray-away-the-gay psychologist? After all, in 2006 she said she took a degree in tax law, despite hating everything to do with taxes, because he told her to. “The Lord said, ‘Be submissive. Wives, you are to be submissive to your husbands,’” she told the crowd at a Minnesota megachurch. At the recent GOP debate in Iowa, her supporters in the audience booed when the Washington Examiner’s Byron York reminded her of this episode and asked if she would be submissive to Marcus as president. But it was a perfectly reasonable question: people have a right to know who would really be calling the shots in a Bachmann administration. I can hear it now: “Darling, can you believe Paul Ryan wants Grover Norquist on the Supreme Court? Oh, well… If you really think so…” Nor was the question sexist, as some said. During a 2008 debate, Mike Huckabee was asked about an ad he signed supporting the Southern Baptist Convention’s doctrine that wives should “graciously submit” to their husbands. Much like Bachmann, who answered by saying she has a wonderful marriage and that “submission” means “respect,” Huckabee said it was really all about mutual love.
Is this woman for real? That question was so sexist, it was booed by REPUBLICANS, many of whom (being her base) are as religiously fundamentalist as Ms. Bachmann. FYI, Katha, the Presidency is A JOB, not an adult education course – and no one outside of a 30-year-old Jackie Collins novel talks the way she “hears” Bachmann speaking. Further, I really have to wonder if Ms. Pollitt has a significant other, because even in the most non-Christian-y relationships, partners seek job advice from each other. In the case of a Commander-in-Chief and his or her spouse, I’m sure some advice-taking does happen. It’s hardly a matter for the fainting couch. Is it really worth tarnishing one’s feminist cred just to enjoy the nasty thrill of a cheap Bach attack?
What’s even worse about this article, is that Pollitt knows Bachmann isn’t worth it. The very next sentence of her post wryly states,
Let me go out on a limb here and say that Michele Bachmann is not going to become president.
Then why bother?
Look, if you want to turn people off to Ms. Bachmann on a religious basis, it’s very easy to do. Ms. Bachmann has clearly stated that as President, she would bring her extreme religious agenda to an America that wants no part of it. Is that really so hard to write about? Ms. Pollitt, seemingly unaware of any irony, continues,
If the media were to take Bachmann’s religion seriously, most Americans would be repelled.
Katha apparently thinks slinging unattributed generalisms about religious extremists like Michele, and talking about what other people argue about Michele, and quoting a religious nutjob (a man, of course – not Michele herself), is the same as taking Bachmann’s OWN religion seriously. Here’s the token nutjob in question:
“God has designed men to exercise authority in the home, in the church, in society and in government,” says Bryan Fischer, radio host and director of issues analysis at the American Family Association, an organization that believes “a culture based on biblical truth best serves the well-being of our nation and our families.” So how can Bachmann run for president? Well, sometimes, Fischer explains, if God can’t find a man, “he’ll send a woman to do a man’s job” as a last resort. (And besides, her husband told her to run, so there.)
Did you catch that? Afraid her readers will awaken from their Michele-hatin’ haze, Pollitt cheats by pretending that Michele is running because her husband told her so. I suppose she was unable to find any actual quote by Ms. Bachmann saying something like that, and I’m pretty sure I know why: Because it’s not true. Bachmann has been widely quoted as saying that the “person’ who told her to run for President was, in fact, God. And last I checked, no one was mistaking Marcus Bachmann for The Almighty.
Frankly, the idea of Michele Bachmann being President isn’t scary because her husband would be in charge. It’s scary because MICHELE would be in charge. Michele Bachmann is an ignorant, inexperienced, and radical politician. She is both pro-Austerity (she voted against raising the debt ceiling and favors massive spending cuts to address the fake deficit crisis) and pro-Theocracy (she believes that the Constitution should be replaced with the Bible). Her eyes are so intense, they could double as X-Rays. Really, what more is there to say?
Mind-reading is not journalism. The “Some people say,” canard, which Pollitt also flings “liberally” around in this article, is also not journalism. And trying to freak people out about how Michele will “submit” to her husband when she’s in the White House, is blatantly sexist.
This is an open thread. Everyone in the hurricane’s path, take care! (Widdershins Lounge tonight.)
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