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111 Responses

  1. Hattie
    Hattie March 30, 2008 at 2:11 pm |

    What a marvelous piece. Thank you.

  2. Jay
    Jay March 30, 2008 at 2:24 pm |

    Thank you. For staying around, for thinking so clearly, and for writing so well. You provide me with words for what I believe but can’t articulate, and that makes me much more likely to advocate for my position when I have the chance. What you do here matters, Zuzu.

  3. marissa
    marissa March 30, 2008 at 2:25 pm |

    all i can say is thank you

  4. Sarah J
    Sarah J March 30, 2008 at 2:27 pm |

    For sure.

    I’ve been a volunteer for Obama for months now, and yet when canvassing I spend plenty of time defending Clinton against gender-based attacks.

  5. bongobunny
    bongobunny March 30, 2008 at 2:31 pm |

    So many of us have found ourselves in the position of speaking to someone (generally a man, but often a woman) who uses very offensive language to talk about Hillary Clinton. Thank you for so articulately spelling out why this is not acceptable.

    I too, am bothered by the references to Ann Coulter as “tranny” and other such slurs….and I can’t STAND the woman.

  6. You need to go read this. « What’s Your Name, Mommy?

    […] You need to go read this. Because it really does hurt all of us. […]

  7. pamela
    pamela March 30, 2008 at 2:45 pm |

    Thank you for writing this piece…from now on it will be an easy link to this when I start reading those damn “she’s so hard”, “she’s a bitch”, etc., comments.

    I agree with bongobunny – what is not even more sad is that these comments come from women more often than men.

  8. pamela
    pamela March 30, 2008 at 2:47 pm |

    Thank you for writing this piece…from now on it will be an easy link to this when I start reading those damn “she’s so hard”, “she’s a bitch”, etc., comments.

    I agree with bongobunny – what is even more sad is that these comments come from women more often than men.

  9. pocochina
    pocochina March 30, 2008 at 2:50 pm |

    I’m so sick and angry and upset that you had to write this.

    That said, it is perfect, and thank you, thank you, thank you.

  10. Jen
    Jen March 30, 2008 at 2:52 pm |

    Thanks for so fluently exposing what I find so troubling in the liberal party. For months, I was on the fence when it came to Hillary and Obama. I disagreed with her ties to corporations, but I found Obama too much of a cult of personality and not willing enough to support Health Care initiatives. I’d say that the biggest factor that guided me to the Hillary camp was Obama’s supporters.

    Never have I been as disgusted with the liberal party as I am today. Men I worked next to two years ago on a local Congressional campaign spout misogynistic nonsense whenever the topic of Hillary comes up. They attack me for defending her, calling into question my loyalty to the liberal party because they say I’m voting with my vagina.

    What they fail to realize is that I refuse to vote for anyone that has benefited from sexism and said nothing. I also refuse to ally myself with a bunch of pseudo-liberals who cash in on the trendiness of supporting a minority while simultaneously failing to see the hypocrisy of their sexist commentary.

    This election has ended my love affair with the Democratic party. Whenever someone calls themselves a liberal, I no longer automatically assume that they are my allies in Feminist Agendas. I’ve even had “liberals” tell me that I am not a Feminist, that my ideology is outdated and divisive because it refuses to talk about men as much as women.

    What this all comes down to, and I posted a similar commentary on Feministing, is that liberal men, I think, are not as likely to be our allies as I once supposed. The majority of them that I have run into still find sexist jokes funny, still think a reference to bitches and female genitals is the pinnacle of argumentation.

    These liberal men and their woman allies are conservatives in disguise. They will grant us our Feminism only if it doesn’t question their bigotry, and prefers to wrap itself around a stripper pole naked. They are fans of “third wave sexy feminism” or feminism that is all about porn and sex, and not about the things that matter. They think that second-wave feminism is outdated, that overt sexism is dead, and that anyone that challenges their views hates men, is hysterical, and fears sex.

    Before anyone says that I am being overly critical, I’m not. This is the kind of garbage I have put up with day in and day out from my liberal allies, mostly men and paradoxically, a few women. Since the election and the popularity of bigotry as political debate soared, I have been dismissed as a nut case, accused of wanting to castrate all men, and chased out of my leadership position in our campus Democratic club. Before my eyes, my political life has been destroyed, regardless of the countless hours I spent behind campaigns: all because I dare to be a feminist, a Hillary supporter, and call people out on their sexist bullshit.

    The overwhelming response is that women are only welcome in politics, even liberal politics, is if they bring their kitten heels, their freshly baked cookies, and titter appealingly at every reference to Clinton’s vagina.

  11. lindabeth
    lindabeth March 30, 2008 at 2:57 pm |

    Wow. Truly insightful and well-put. Will be sure to link to on my recommended reading list this week!

  12. Amanda Marcotte
    Amanda Marcotte March 30, 2008 at 3:01 pm |

    I’d like to talk to the feminists who think that calling Clinton a bitch is not that big a deal because they’re supporting Obama. Do you have examples of someone doing this?

  13. Political Mishmash at it is what it is

    […] Zuzu at Feministe does a fabulous job of explaining why, even though I support Senator Obama, it is … Well said. As one commenter on the post also said, I dislike Ann Coulter, but that doesn’t mean I don’t cringe when someone’s argument against her is calling her a “tranny.” […]

  14. Salieri
    Salieri March 30, 2008 at 4:06 pm |

    Thank you, thank you, a million times over. I’m finding these pockets of sanity in the blogosphere and hanging on as tightly as I can. I’m sure I’ll be rereading this post very often over the next few months.

  15. kalien
    kalien March 30, 2008 at 4:10 pm |

    Excellent post. I have been troubled by some of the comments to your recent posts about this issue, and this post cuts to the heart of the problem.

  16. Amanda Marcotte
    Amanda Marcotte March 30, 2008 at 4:21 pm |

    Okay, feminists excusing sexism against Clinton in general. Because I believe it happens, but I haven’t seen much of it. This is really the stupid season, with partisans for each candidate losing their mind.

    On the other hand, I’ve seen people complaining that, say, Feministing is soft on it when they have the Hillary Sexism Watch as a feature. I’m concerned if feminists are really excusing it, but I’m also concerned about that problem, as well.

  17. Betsy
    Betsy March 30, 2008 at 4:29 pm |

    I agree with 99% of what you’ve said here, and I think you said it beautifully.

    That said, this:

    I’m focusing on the misogynistic stuff thrown at Clinton because this, as you may recall, is a feminist blog.

    is something I’ve really been struggling with. One of the things I’ve learned in my 8 years of studying the second-wave feminist movement (and the feminisms that evolved out of it) is that white feminists cannot focus on gender and sexism without attention to race and racism if they want to make this a movement as vibrant and colorful as the world is. I think that AS FEMINISTS, we can’t afford the perception that we only care about discrimination against (white) women. There is much suspicion and hostility among many people of color toward feminism because of the belief that it is only concerned with narrowly-defined gender discrimination, and that it doesn’t understand the pervasiveness of other kinds of bias/prejudice/discrimination. Thus, to take only one example, when we stay silent about a Clinton surrogate saying (approvingly!) that the people of Pennsylvania “aren’t ready” for a black president, and seem to object only when it’s Clinton who has bias directed at her, we are reinforcing that perception. That doesn’t, of course, mean that we shouldn’t object to the sexism directed at Clinton; I abhor it and think it should be condemned loudly and often. I just don’t think that saying that it’s a feminist blog means that it’s ok to ignore the race stuff.

  18. Acer
    Acer March 30, 2008 at 4:34 pm |

    Thanks so much, Zuzu. I’ve started reading your posts to stay sane in the middle of all the primary news.

  19. Daisy
    Daisy March 30, 2008 at 4:38 pm |

    I think there is also a class issue going on, which I haven’t sorted out well, yet. But I hear far more anti-Hillary remarks from working class women (I’m one), than from professional women. (Then again, I keep hearing that poorer women of my age group are her base. Possibly true in the north, but not here.)

    I think this might come down to style… and the way the ruling class appears offensively entitled to certain jobs and/or positions, period. (I think it might well happen to virtually any Democrat with Hillary’s background, unless they are a Kennedy.)

    We notice this primarily because 1) Bill Clinton had no such problem; in fact, the opposite. He was regular baited as southern white-trash, Yalie or not. 2) Obama seems to be getting the same kind of pass, due to race and his unconventional, hard-to-define upbringing. Unfortunately, right now that leaves Hillary as the bastion of upper class decency in the Democratic party. There has always been this particular type of misogyny applied to affluent women, the stereotype of the rich, spoiled socialite bitch, Jackie O, etc. Image-wise, I see this stereotype blending with a general hatred of the nanny-state, with Clinton as Head Nanny. Sort of a Democratic Margaret Thatcher, if you will.

    At least, that’s the gist of stuff I hear from co-workers, and read on boards like CROOKS AND LIARS.

  20. LS
    LS March 30, 2008 at 4:50 pm |

    What I find horrifying is how insidious it can be. I talk politics with my friends all the time — hell, we’re studying it — and even people who’ll admit, when pressed, that her voice just hitched slightly make casual reference to ‘her crying scene’ when discussing how ‘calculated’ her campaign has been. And even in myself — I try to refer to both candidates the same way, but I frequently find myself saying “Hillary” but “Obama” as conversations wear on.

  21. Suburban Guerrilla » Blog Archive » Media Bias

    […] UPDATE: Zuzu has some related thoughts. […]

  22. Lloyd Webber
    Lloyd Webber March 30, 2008 at 5:09 pm |

    whine, whine, whine. that’s all you “white power feminists” are good for.

  23. bc
    bc March 30, 2008 at 5:31 pm |

    I think this is a really good post and you’re absolutely right – the tendency to overlook sexism regarding Hillary Clinton is absolutely pervasive, even among so-called progressive people. I get into arguments with my roommates sometimes (they hate her) and find myself constantly on the defensive for things they might say about her that have a sexist bent to them, even though I don’t support her candidacy. It is great that you’ve devoted yourself to the unpopular task of defending her against misogyny in the series of posts you’ve done and it’s a shame that there’s constant topic derailment and excuses made in those posts that have nothing to do with the topic at hand.

    However, I think you’re getting increased animosity every time you post about her for reasons other than sexism and denial – you often engage the derailments about Obama vs. Hillary in the comments with seemingly blatantly pro-Hillary positions – superdelegates, Michigan and Florida, even going so far as to imply in a comment in your last post that Obama’s lead in the popular vote is less relevant than one might think since a majority of that lead comes from his home state (if this was not your intention than I apologize, that’s certainly what it seemed like, though) which is a pretty silly argument to make. I understand that people are antagonizing you with unrelated crap in the comments, but I think some of us feel suspicious now, when you post about the misogyny Hillary has endured, because of the other comments you’ve made where you’re “taking her side.” I also think Betsy has a valid point about the need to take to task other -isms than sexism, as feminists, but I don’t expect you as an individual to have the time, energy, or interest to do that.

  24. Kacie
    Kacie March 30, 2008 at 5:40 pm |

    great post. it articulated my feelings perfectly.

  25. Jamie Jeans
    Jamie Jeans March 30, 2008 at 6:28 pm |

    This was a wonderfully articulate post you wrote, and I’m glad you took the time to write it and that I read it. I honestly don’t like the shots taken at Clinton because she’s a woman or because her husband was President.

    The definition of what it is to be a man or a woman is changing, and for the better, I hope, so that one day, traits will just be traits, regardless of gender or biological sex.

    Frankly, I think it’s amazing that Clinton has hung in there for as long as she has, or that she went into this in the first place, knowing full well, especially from her time in the White House, how people will attack her for being a woman.

  26. Rose
    Rose March 30, 2008 at 6:40 pm |

    This was a fantastic article. It summed up how uncomfortable I feel when I hear, “But Ann Coulter’s a man!”

    I am an Obama supporter, but you know what I hear a lot that grinds my gears? “The screechy sound of Hillary’s voice just drives me insane,” or some variant thereof. Always makes me uncomfortable, like, what does that have to do with her qualifications?!

  27. Aeryl
    Aeryl March 30, 2008 at 7:01 pm |

    But I hear far more anti-Hillary remarks from working class women (I’m one),

    I, too, am a working class woman, and when it comes to die-hard Republican women, this is definitely true, Democratic women, while they support her, still talk about her in overtly sexist ways. Part of it has seeped so deeply into our subconcious through a constant media drum(like people saying her voice is screechy. I personally think it has a baritone to it, similiar to mine, far from the definition of screechy) Also, working class women, who before the internet, rarely had exposure to feminist thought and media bias, since most don’t attend college. So they have internalized more sexism, and perpetuate, even against a candidate they support.

  28. exholt
    exholt March 30, 2008 at 7:17 pm |

    I disagreed with her ties to corporations, but I found Obama too much of a cult of personality and not willing enough to support Health Care initiatives.

    Umm….Obama’s not totally clean in terms of corporate ties, either…as the case of Tony Rezko…but that’s par for the course for any viable presidential candidate in our current political system. Though I may not agree with one radical-left socialist college classmate on many political issues….he was at least consistent enough to call out both Obama and Clinton on their ties to corporate interests.

    As seen from Kucinich and to some extent, Edwards among Democrats and past runs by progressive third parties such as the Greens with the exception of Nader*….going against corporate interests tends to undermine and eventually kill off your viability as presidential candidate.

    Personally, I also lean towards Clinton due to the “Cult of Personality” around Obama along with the fact that she comes across as a more substantiative candidate. Unfortunately, it is quite sad that in a primary where for once the Democratic party has two reasonably strong competitive candidates that the partisans both within the party and without are trying to reduce it to a high school popularity contest where being glib, charming, and cool are far more important than whether the candidate’s stand on the issues and policy proposals accord with that of individual voters.

  29. dcblogger
    dcblogger March 30, 2008 at 7:17 pm |

    wow
    just wow

  30. exholt
    exholt March 30, 2008 at 7:22 pm |

    * Nader is excluded because he is not only a corporate shill from my experience witnessing him making excuses about the PIRG fee on student bills which was added to our tuition bill without out consent and that we students must opt-out of….he also received financial support from many GOP supporters during his 2000 and 2004 runs for President…..

  31. Being Amber Rhea » Blog Archive » links for 2008-03-30

    […] Feministe » Why calling out misogyny matters “Attack her all you want on her positions, on her record, on her tactics — but don’t stand for gender-based attacks on her. They’re not acceptable, no matter what you think of her and no matter who they’re coming from.” (tags: feminism sexism language politics important) […]

  32. sigh
    sigh March 30, 2008 at 7:43 pm |

    Exactly right. Thank you

  33. YellowDog08
    YellowDog08 March 30, 2008 at 7:54 pm |

    See, this is why I don’t get the Hillary-hate that my whole immediate family except my mom – my right-wing dad, my centrist older sis, and my left-wing younger sis – have bought into. I called my sisters to task on it and they admitted it: they think Hillary’s too aggressive for a woman. Damn it, she’s just like any other typical shady politician. Smear campaigning is nothing new. Skeletons in the closet are nothing new. The only difference is that she’s not expected to campaign the same way all politicians do because she happens to have one more hole in her body than her competitors. So what?

    I’m a registered Independent, and voted for Obama in the primaries, but for the purposes of the general election I’m going yellow-dog Democrat. None of that “I won’t vote for the other candidate if they get the nomination” crap. I’d much rather have someone in who will not escalate war too rapidly and who will respect my reproductive rights, regardless of whether they don’t obey expectations for their gender or have a skeleton or two in their closet.

  34. bc
    bc March 30, 2008 at 7:54 pm |

    Hey zuzu, thanks for the response. I figured it was just you lawyering everything to death, particularly Michigan and Florida, and I think the position you took on it is reasonable and the response you got was not. I still think the jab about Obama having more popular votes because of Illinois is a pretty unfair argument to make, but I can understand if you said that in the heat of that thread after arguing with so many people. Anyway, I apologize if I’m getting way off topic here, I just wanted to try to address the criticism you’ve been getting when you post about the primary and Hillary Clinton in a polite way.

  35. CBrachyrhynchos
    CBrachyrhynchos March 30, 2008 at 7:57 pm |

    Jen Says: Thanks for so fluently exposing what I find so troubling in the liberal party.

    The problem is that the only liberal parties in the United States are even more hated by rank-and-file “progressives” than the Republicans.

    zuzu Says: but later, you were willing to assume that Hillary’s absence from Bill’s press conference when the Lewinsky thing broke was due to political calculation, which shocked me because you are usually so very attuned to the cultural narrative that women are calculating, untrustworthy, manipulative, etc.

    I hear this. On the other hand, given the nature of politics and public relations in the age of mass media, it’s foolish to believe that the Clinton’s media appearances during that scandal were not carefully orchestrated and managed. Refusing to give the benefit of the doubt to participants in a highly manipulative and corrupt political system is a matter of basic political self-defense.

  36. Hawise
    Hawise March 30, 2008 at 8:02 pm |

    Thak you for writing this zuzu. I linked to the WSJ article from the Huffpo (first mistake) then started to read the Huffpo comment thread (second mistake). Lord but as bad as it has gotten there you would really think that all the commenters were 14 year old boys pretending to be women. Thank God I had to take my son to a movie or I would have exploded by the end of the first page.

  37. CBrachyrhynchos
    CBrachyrhynchos March 30, 2008 at 8:11 pm |

    Yeah, I’m more concerned with the political gaming now than rehashing the Lewinsky scandal. I’m willing to vote straight-ticket Democrat to keep McCain out of office, but I have very low expectations of how much needed change is going to come from the White House after inauguration.

  38. Kris
    Kris March 30, 2008 at 8:30 pm |

    Thanks for posting this. I’ve had a number of ‘unpleasant’ experiences online in attempting to flag some of the inappropriate (read: sexist) attacks on Clinton. Generally speaking, my experiences of trying to raise issue resonate with what you have described here. Indeed, the responses seem to start at “Don’t be so sensitive”; to “fucking retard”, “fucking idiot” or (my favourite) “you stupid fucking bitch” (I am a guy, BTW). And these in what are supposed to be “progressive” forums. It really, really depresses me. So again, thanks for posting.

    [… A post that resonates with me acn be found on the Feministe website…]

  39. BAC
    BAC March 30, 2008 at 8:36 pm |

    Zuzu, this is an excellent post. Given how many Clinton supporters are treated in the progressive blogosphere I found it telling that you needed to spend so much time at the beginning of the post explaining that just because you were writing this, it didn’t mean you were (are) a Clinton supporter. The fact that you felt the need to do that really, in my mind, says it all.

    BAC

  40. Felicia
    Felicia March 30, 2008 at 8:54 pm |

    I’m focusing on the misogynistic stuff thrown at Clinton because this, as you may recall, is a feminist blog.

    Wow! So I guess as an African American female, I need to find a blog that specifically addresses being an African American female. While I’m at it, why don’t I find a blog that specifically addresses being a 40-year old AA female. Better still, I should look for a blog that specifically addresses being a 40-year old, middle-class AA female. Even better still, I should look for a blog that only addresses my concerns as 40-year AA, middle-class AA female who lives in the midwest.

    Intolerence is not so neatly compartmentalized as you like to make it.

  41. Hawise
    Hawise March 30, 2008 at 9:26 pm |

    Felicia, you have me totally confused as well. What is it that you are looking for? These are particular concerns that are coming at a particular time and warrant a vigorous discussion. The media and most of the political class want us to STFU so that they can have a dreamy hope and apple pie election but we need to make sure that the public discourse is elevated and examined on all counts. Today it is misogyny in the political campaigns, and tomorrow it could be the lack of recognition for women of all colors in the Midwest and the day after that we may reexamine the lack of accountability of the recovery in New Orleans and along the Gulf Coast. No single article can tackle all the issues at once but let’s give zuzu a chance, she has done pretty damn good so far.

  42. Rebecca
    Rebecca March 30, 2008 at 9:36 pm |

    On that deep, personal, gut level that cannot be explained, I simply cannot warm to Clinton as a woman. I like her as a politician but as a woman, she is the sort I would not want to get to know better. If it’s misogynistic that there are simply people that, for whatever reason, leave me feeling slightly icky, then it’s misogynisitc and I will still be able to sleep tonight. Yes, it’s hurtful, but it’s also true and sometimes the truth hurts, but it has to hurt before it can start to heal.

    That being said, I think the things that have been said and implied about Clinton these last months are outrageous and shameful, beyond the pale of what is normally acceptable even in a presidential campaign. Part of me wonders if it is Clinton who garners this over-the-top response, or if any woman would. (Which does not excuse the attacks, they are inexcusable, but I can’t help but wonder.)

    I think Clinton has handled herself well in a difficult and fraught situation and my respect for her and what she has done won’t be tarnished by what others say about her. If she is the nominee, I will vote for her without any qualms, but then, I feel the same way about Obama.

  43. prairielily
    prairielily March 30, 2008 at 9:44 pm |

    I really don’t think you should have to address it, zuzu. I’m not white either, but I’m not upset about that line, because your next sentence was this:

    And while there are hundreds if not thousands of other blogs as well as entire networks and mainstream media outlets rushing to the defense of Obama (thus rendering anything I have to say pretty well redundant), there are few outlets calling out misogynistic attacks on Clinton and/or on her supporters.

    If people can’t exercise their reading comprehension skills, it’s honestly not your problem. Like you said, you’re talking about a specific person in a specific situation. Feministe is absolutely not a blog that ignores intersectionality, and you’re really not in this post. You just chose to focus on sexism because so many other people are already talking about racism.

    I know that if Condoleeza Rice gets thrown into the mix as a VP candidate, you’ll defend her against racist and sexist attacks, because they’ll still be wrong regardless of her positions and behaviour. And honestly, all the stuff that has been thrown towards Clinton during this period has convinced me that plenty of supposedly liberal people would happily toss out sexist and racist attacks at someone like Rice. It’s very disconcerting.

  44. Cecily
    Cecily March 30, 2008 at 10:13 pm |

    Okay…here’s an awkward question/position. I’m alive to the misogyny in the coverage of Clinton’s candidacy, and I’ve pointed it out to people and complained about it dutifully amongst my friends and colleagues. But I really don’t understand the idea that saying she has an annoying voice is misogynistic.

    If people were saying she was “shrill” I would hear that dogwhistle a mile off, but I hear them saying she has an unpleasant voice. Before I ever heard a person complain about her voice I had turned off the radio briefly during a debate because her voice was so unpleasant it was stressing me out on my way to an already stressful workday.

    I actually think her voice has gotten better — I imagine she’s gotten a coach to help her, which is a good idea especially in the wake of the talked-out throat she had for a while on the trail. She still sounds authoritative, but there’s some tense undertone that has faded somewhat. I don’t think it’s misogynist to think it’s a good idea for a professional politician without a naturally appealing voice to hire a voice coach…but maybe I’m self-hating?

  45. Mary Stebbins Taitt
    Mary Stebbins Taitt March 30, 2008 at 10:54 pm |

    Good words and important stuff, great points!

  46. Pizza Diavola
    Pizza Diavola March 30, 2008 at 11:26 pm |

    Part of me wonders if it is Clinton who garners this over-the-top response, or if any woman would. (Which does not excuse the attacks, they are inexcusable, but I can’t help but wonder.)

    I’ve been reading some journalism from the ’90s and the hatred that Bill Clinton inspired, so I’m thinking that it’s a combination of both: Clinton garners this over-the-top response both because she’s a woman and because she has “Clinton” in her name. It’s just that her last name makes it easy for genuine misogynists to hide behind the excuse of “it’s just her!” and pretend that they’re not sexist.

  47. Felicia
    Felicia March 30, 2008 at 11:37 pm |

    I fully comprehended zuzu’s post (but thanks for being condescending, prairielily). BTW, I don’t presume to speak for all women of color. This is a concern I have. Prairielily may have different concerns, but that doesn’t any of our concerns any less valid. I think what we should be challenging is the dominant ideology of white male patriarchy, and we can’t do that as long as people say, I’m not going to discuss X because that’s completely different from Y. No! They’re not.

    My point is that one doesn’t have to exclude racism to talk about misogyny. Intolerance can’t be segregated. The same pathology that’s operative in peoples’ disdain for Sen. Clinton for being Hillary Clinton (a powerful, strong woman) is also present in people’s hate for Sen. Obama (and for that matter, Sen. Obama’s wife, who conservative pundits hate as heartily as they hated Sen. Clinton when her husband ran for president in the early 90s).

    Why do we have to limit our discussion to one political candidate? I’m not against talking about Sen. Clinton, but when zuzu’s post is only about Sen. Clinton, then s/he sets the discussion up for binary oppositions of Clinton vs. Obama, male vs. female, race vs. gender. It’s not that simple.

    Finally, when zuzu says s/he is focusing on Sen. Clinton’s treatment because it hasn’t be addressed, I don’t think that’s a fair assessment. The Wall Street Journal posted an article yesterday about the sexist backlash of Sen. Clinton’s campaign and treatment she’s received. This coming from the WSJ, so it’s out there. There are discussion of misogyny, and there needs to continue to be discussion about it. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120674839234873285.html?mod=special_page_campaign2008_leftbox

    Hey, I love this blog because it does address gender and race (I love the LeBron/Giselle post). But occasionally, like now, I disagree with some of the bloggers.

  48. Kat
    Kat March 31, 2008 at 12:02 am |

    Wow. Just… wow.

    Jen, you too.

    I have felt so utterly, utterly alone in all this. Thank you so very much for this post.

  49. sophonisba
    sophonisba March 31, 2008 at 12:11 am |

    Yes, it’s hurtful, but it’s also true and sometimes the truth hurts, but it has to hurt before it can start to heal.

    What? Not wanting Clinton to be your best girlfriend is hurtful? To whom? Me, I don’t want her to be my best friend either. I just want her as my president. She can make friends on her own time, and so can I.

    On that deep, personal, gut level that cannot be explained, I simply cannot warm to Clinton as a woman.

    What is this about? What is the relevance? Who, in short, cares?

  50. truffula
    truffula March 31, 2008 at 12:18 am |

    “It isn’t easy being a woman in academia,” says Amanda Moniz, a 36-year-old Ph.D. candidate in history at the University of Michigan. “I want a woman candidate who is strong, but also feminine, and who doesn’t feel she has to be tougher than men to succeed,” she says. “Although Hillary has achieved a lot on her own, she wouldn’t be where she was if not for her husband — and that isn’t an inspiring lesson.”

    As a woman in academia (with tenure, in the sciences) I am somewhat amazed and entirely saddened by this attitude. If Ms. Moniz is lucky, nobody will ever say something similar about how while she’s bright enough, she didn’t really earn that degree, that first job, that promotion to tenure…but my experience, and the experience of my female colleagues, suggests otherwise.

  51. Danakitty
    Danakitty March 31, 2008 at 12:24 am |

    As much as I really want to see Clinton win this one, and the presidency, I’m a little bit afraid of what could happen.

    Bush has done so much to fuck up literally *everything* that who ever gets elected is going to spend a good majority of their term cleaning up his mess, which has nothing to say for what good the next president could do.

    I’m afraid that if Clinton isn’t able to clean up his mess and restore the country to order in 4 years, women are going to be set back even further by her seeming “inadequacy” … by the fact that she couldn’t fix everything. I’m afraid that misogyny will be allowed to flourish because it will be “proven” that women can’t be as good as men, even if Clinton succeeds in turning a lot of Bush’s failed policies around.

    And I hate saying all this, because I really truly believe she’s the best candidate, but I’m afraid she won’t be able to fix Bush’s mistakes and she’ll be blamed for it (of course, leading to more blame for the common woman).

    What are all your thoughts on this?

  52. Rika
    Rika March 31, 2008 at 1:00 am |

    Danakitty,

    I think it’s pretty much inevitible that at some point we’re going to have to attempt to convince people that a President’s screw-ups are because of the individual, not because of their gender. I’d rather just get a woman in office and get it over with rather than try to wait for just the right woman and just the right circumstances.

    If Clinton can’t clean up Bush’s messes, I think it wouldn’t be hard for people to figure out it was because it was a big mess to clean up, and after all, wasn’t it a man who made the mess in the first place? Really, not much would be there on which to base the “Men are just better!” argument.

  53. tinfoil hattie
    tinfoil hattie March 31, 2008 at 1:09 am |

    This is an excellent, articulate, well-thought-out post. Thank you so much for putting into words so many of my half-formed thoughts & frustration & anger.

    You’re on fire.

  54. Absolute Must Reads « Donna Darko
    Absolute Must Reads « Donna Darko March 31, 2008 at 1:29 am |

    […] 31, 2008 · No Comments Zuzu: Why calling out misogyny […]

  55. lizriz
    lizriz March 31, 2008 at 3:44 am |

    Simply, thank you. I have felt so beaten down by the vicious sexism towards Hillary Clinton and how sexism is clearly still “funny.” It’s just been horrid, and sometimes it seems the only relief is reading your well-written posts about it.

    I’m sorry if I’m being melodramatic this evening. I just feel like this primary lifted a rug off America and shook out all the sexism and racism that was hiding in it. It’s really been discouraging.

  56. Victoria Marinelli
    Victoria Marinelli March 31, 2008 at 4:54 am |

    Wow, I wish I’d seen this earlier. It would have made the process of writing my own most recent post, Calling “these people” out: More on the increasingly tiresome – and dangerous – Obama/Clinton divide a lot less lonely. In it, I wrestle (once again) with the notion, on the part of some Clinton supporters, that all Obama supporters are thoughtless, patriarchy-promoting robots, and propose (among other things) “a joint petition of Obama and Clinton supporters ‘explicitly and without qualification’ opposing both the sexism and the racism we have seen against both candidates.”

    Interested persons, please drop me a note or comment.

    Thanks for being there, Feministe. You consistently rock.

  57. Lisa
    Lisa March 31, 2008 at 9:21 am |

    @ #4: I have been doing the same thing Sara J. I support Senator Obama for president, but end up spending 50% of my phone call and canvassing time reframing, defending, and correcting misogynist critique of Senator Clinton.

    It makes me uncomfortable in the extreme. I spend a lot of time talking to my fellow African Americans about that kind of diminishing language as well. While it is ok to support a candidate, and even be burned up at the opposition, it is not ok to throw women as a whole under the bus because you are pissed off about the perceived racism of a candidate that happens to be a woman.

    Boy do we have a long way to go.

  58. SarahMC
    SarahMC March 31, 2008 at 9:36 am |

    Danakitty, I feel the same way. In a vacuum, I really really want Hillary Clinton to be our next POTUS. But at this point I am so exhausted by all the sexism that I’m terrified of what might happen should she actually win.

  59. Aeryl
    Aeryl March 31, 2008 at 11:59 am |

    And honestly, all the stuff that has been thrown towards Clinton during this period has convinced me that plenty of supposedly liberal people would happily toss out sexist and racist attacks at someone like Rice. It’s very disconcerting.

    And you know what’s really sad about it. The Republicans(at least the ones allowed on TV) will defend Rice against it. Yeah, the Freepers will flip out(there was a post on this at Pandagon, after Rice spoke out against the racism) but the surrogates will keep it straight, and fend off the attacks. If only our side would have done the same for Clinton.

  60. roses
    roses March 31, 2008 at 12:40 pm |

    Brilliant post, thanks zuzu.

    But I really don’t understand the idea that saying she has an annoying voice is misogynistic.

    Depends on context. I’ve read about more than one man suggesting that men don’t like Clinton because her voice reminds them of their nagging wives/girlfriends.

  61. Hillary’s Voice » From today’s Media News mailing 3/31/08

    […] Why calling out misogyny matters (by zuzu at Feministe) [A]llow me to explain why calling out the misogynist shit thrown at Hillary Clinton, even if you think that Clinton is a party-destroying, warmongering succubus feeding at the corporate teat, is important… It’s not so much that I’m defending Clinton (though I think she’s getting an unfair shake in the media and in the blogosphere, and that annoys me), but that I’m calling this shit out because this shit hurts women. Women like me. Women like many of you. Women like your daughters, your sisters, your mothers, your friends, your spouses, your SOs. If it’s okay to dehumanize a US Senator and presidential candidate as “that thing” or dismiss her as “that bitch,” or set up a 527 called “Citizens United Not Timid” (aka C.U.N.T.) to “educate the American public about what Hillary Clinton really is,” then we now have an environment in which it’s okay to dehumanize, demean and diminish ordinary women because they’re women. And what has been the result of all this denigration?  See below. […]

  62. Oh
    Oh March 31, 2008 at 12:51 pm |

    I feel comfortable deciding not to cover racism or any other intersectional analysis in this particular instance because it’s so well-covered elsewhere. But misogyny is being completely ignored

    This kind of statement is never going to come off well. A lot of people who are at least as concerned about racism as misogyny *don’t* think the racism is being covered well enough. If racism isn’t your focus, sure, it’s easy to think it’s being handled fine by other people, but folks who focus on it are going to be much more aware of all the ways it’s being handled badly–thus, this kind of statement easily comes off as an expression of privilege, where someone who hasn’t felt as stung by the racism gets to say, “Well, racism is covered to *my* satisfaction, so that’s good enough.”

    That said, however, the casual misogyny sprouting up in so many people’s responses to Clinton has been awful, and I appreciate your discussing it.

  63. ivote
    ivote March 31, 2008 at 2:12 pm |

    Thank you! It’s about time…

  64. holler.
    holler. March 31, 2008 at 3:21 pm |

    What they fail to realize is that I refuse to vote for anyone that has benefited from sexism and said nothing.

    Because he can’t say anything, maybe? Obama couldn’t address sexism because strategically (until the Clintons’ race baiting and fear mongering finally came to a head) he couldn’t even address racism. Unlike the Clintons who definitely got their “fed-up-with-the-coloreds-getting-shit-before-us” white woman demographic on lock by playing to the average white woman’s deep seeded and misplaced resentment of men of color, if Obama’d tried that kind of shit–going on about white privilege and being the first black president, etc., his campaign would’ve ended a long time ago. What does that say about media bias?

    I also refuse to ally myself with a bunch of pseudo-liberals who cash in on the trendiness of supporting a minority while simultaneously failing to see the hypocrisy of their sexist commentary.

    Typical. People of color are “trendy” and “cool” and obviously Obama’s only there because he’s “hip”. And oh, there’s absolutely nothing historically racist about that kind of rhetoric. Uh uh, no way… And obviously white women the country over were able to make informed decisions about their support of Hillary Clinton that had nothing to do with the fact that she’s a white woman, but man those Coloreds! They vote based on who’s “cool” (and not white).

    What annoys me about this post, Zuzu, is that every white feminist with wi-fi and a mac has complained about the sexism Hillary Clinton faces, whether they support her or not. Why not simply defend her against misogyny without the extra paragraphs and big to-do’s that you know make you sound both whiny and racially insensitive? This post is just a bunch of defensively reactionary shit, qualified in a way that posits white women as victims without actually saying it’s about white women, and of course passively tries to address the unique sexism women of color experience, just to “spice things up”.

    What’s hilarious about this post though, Zuzu, is how quickly it’s been buried. LOL.

  65. Latoya Peterson
    Latoya Peterson March 31, 2008 at 3:30 pm |

    Good piece.

    With that being said, I have to agree with Oh and Felicia. For many of us women of color, we find ourselves equally frustrated – we have to fight the negative perceptions of Hillary as a woman that is not often acknowledged in racial circles and then come to feminist circles and hear Obama is getting a pass – which he is not, because we have seen way too much racist doublespeak being launched from the media and other campaign surrogates.

    Again, puts us in an awkward position – I just finished battling a sexist comment about Chelsea Clinton and her participation in her mother’s campaign at lunch time. And while I would love to start handing out links to this piece to explain to some people why these comments like “Chelsea is so ugly” and “Hilary should be ironing a shirt” aren’t funny, I also wouldn’t want them to lose sight of the main piece because they have taken offense to some of the comments dismissing Barack’s treatment.

  66. Tony
    Tony March 31, 2008 at 3:49 pm |

    When it comes to political candidates, a lot of progressives care more about their candidate winning than racism/sexism. So hacks will exploit either one when it helps them or drive themselves crazy with mock outrage when it harms their opponent. Just like they will twist, distort and mangle the truth in general whichever way to help the candidatae they support. It’s quite laughable, to be truthful. One wonders though… if they are willing to throw so much under the bus to help their candidate, why did they support their candidate in the first place?

  67. neroden
    neroden March 31, 2008 at 4:09 pm |

    Good post. Regarding the comments, I especially agree with #4, #63 and #71.

    Unfortunately the rampant sexism and racism seems to prevent people from seeing the true advantages and disadvantages of the candidates clearly. Apart from the large *direct* effects among people who actually *buy* the sexist and racist slurs, valid criticism can get written off as sexism or racism. I think the difference between the two candidates on policy is really marginal, and I think Obama has proved to be a better campaigner, people-swayer, and generally a more competent politician. But try to discuss that in a political conversation when everyone’s going straight to emotional attacks, including great masses of bigotry and stereotypes — and the reaction involves people blaming each candidate for every action of every random supporter.

  68. Latoya Peterson
    Latoya Peterson March 31, 2008 at 4:20 pm |

    ^^

    Not in your piece, Zuzu, in the comments.

    And again, we could say the same thing from an anti-racist standpoint. Clinton has a legion of smart, influential feminists going to bat for her in the media and in the blogosphere who accuse Obama supporters of race baiting and making things up. Racism and sexism are both pervasive. If you hear more sexism than racism, I would suggest that is because of your lens of perception. I personally perceive more racism toward the Obamas (sublte and overt) than sexism toward Clinton (which is boldly overt), but that is because my lens views race more prominently than it views sexism.

  69. Latoya Peterson
    Latoya Peterson March 31, 2008 at 4:35 pm |

    Oh, and let me clarify that lens comment. I am not arguing that what is perceived is wrong, I am arguing that we perceive things differently based on life experiences. I learned about race first, then sexism, so as a result I tend to pick up on racism faster and in more forms than I do with sexism. And even with that, I pick up on racism directed toward African-Americans faster than I do racism with other ethnic groups as that kind of racism is intimately familiar to me. If something is not intimately familiar to you, it can be difficult to discern when it is happening.

  70. Alice Purdie
    Alice Purdie March 31, 2008 at 5:25 pm |

    zuzu–It’s all about the white male power structure, keeping their power by letting a few women through the gate to show they’ll progressive, all the while doing everything in their power to keep the rest of us down and losing hope.

  71. palhart
    palhart March 31, 2008 at 5:38 pm |

    zuzu, I have to remark about the number of commenters who were off topic here.
    The topic is “Misogyny.” If you don’t detect it in reactions to Hillary and her women voters of a certain age. Mark my words, one day it’ll bite you in the butt, (you women that is).

  72. ouyangdan
    ouyangdan March 31, 2008 at 5:53 pm |

    this was just so well done, zuzu, thank-you.

  73. Jen
    Jen March 31, 2008 at 7:01 pm |

    Unlike the Clintons who definitely got their “fed-up-with-the-coloreds-getting-shit-before-us” white woman demographic on lock by playing to the average white woman’s deep seeded and misplaced resentment of men of color, if Obama’d tried that kind of shit–going on about white privilege and being the first black president, etc., his campaign would’ve ended a long time ago. What does that say about media bias?

    Look, I never set out to say that Clinton has never done her fair share of shit-slinging. What I am saying is that I have seen sexism more frequently than racism. Perhaps the racism is there more than I think it is, because I’m not as particularly sensitive to it as I am to sexism. However, recall that Obama was lauded for his recent speech on race. I can remember numerous times where Hillary was lambasted anytime she so much as hinted to her gender. Obama is the media’s Jesus right now. Take a look at the cover of the most recent RollingStone with Sen. Obama looking majestic and princely. The sheer amount of cheese and personality cult around his campaign is in a very stark contrast to the media’s portrayal of Clinton and her supporters. You know, if Obama had started out his campaign with lots of nods to Civil Rights and addresses to racism, he would have lost. Neither Obama nor Hillary concentrated on their gender or their race. What is different about that is that I see the media taking Obama’s cue and largely ignoring his race, at least when it comes to critical commentary. The media, however, has not done as Clinton would like, and chooses to concentrate on her gender, although that is not the basis or even a significant focus of her campaign at all.

    And obviously white women the country over were able to make informed decisions about their support of Hillary Clinton that had nothing to do with the fact that she’s a white woman, but man those Coloreds! They vote based on who’s “cool” (and not white).

    Interestingly, I referred to white liberals numerous times. I claimed that I sensed that some white men supported Obama because they liked to cash in on the trendiness of both being liberal, and supporting a popular candidate that happened to be African-American. You know, I do in fact support Hillary partly because she is a woman. It’s not that I like people with vaginas more than anyone else, it’s because I think that she would be a better candidate to protect and further Women’s Rights and get things like the Equal Rights amendments passed and veto the hell out of abortion bans. I figure that I trust Hillary more than Obama because I have more in common with her: my gender. It might also be because the hateful rhetoric of Obama supporters makes me saddened to the state of the Democratic party. Or that, of all things, I’m a Feminist and an advocate of the “Female Agenda” first. Or it might be because I feel that she’s more qualified, that Obama doesn’t differ from her on enough issues to be granted the kind of sainthood he has, and that I like her stances on positions more. Great, so I happen to be a white woman, just like Hillary. Congratulations. My beef with Obama has nothing to do with his race. I don’t like his JFK-like tactics of grandstanding. I don’t like his rabid supporters who kicked me out of a club I helped found. I don’t like the fact that media seems to enjoy the sweet taste of his testicles. I also don’t like that throwing my lot in with Hillary makes other people think it their duty to allude to my racism, which I don’t think I have provided any evidence for in any of my commentaries.

    What annoys me about this post, Zuzu, is that every white feminist with wi-fi and a mac has complained about the sexism Hillary Clinton faces, whether they support her or not. Why not simply defend her against misogyny without the extra paragraphs and big to-do’s that you know make you sound both whiny and racially insensitive?

    This is a feminist blog. Although, if you scroll down a bit you can see that we talk about racism a lot here too. Because unlike some liberals who are content to say “gee, I’m not racist, but I think it’s cool to make jokes about bitches and hoes” most of us here try to be as tolerant as possible, and call out all forms of discrimination where we can find them. That includes homosexuals, transsexuals, women, people that aren’t white, and everyone else that has found themselves marginalized by the privilege inherent in a society that values white heterosexual males above all others.

    You know, if you have run into racist commentary in the Clinton-camp, I’m sorry. But part of the reason I signed up to support Sen Clinton is because I run into very little of that kind of stuff, while I was battling with a bunch of sexist pigs on a daily basis while I was affiliated with clubs and groups that have thrown their lot in with Obama. I don’t attempt to speak for all Clinton supporters. I’m sure there are a lot of them that vote for her for all the wrong reasons, and still harbor nasty racist stereotypes in their hearts. What I do stand for is a campaign where our primary grass roots motivators aren’t fueled by sexist jokes. Yet again, if you’ve run into this Starbucks-wielding racist white female pig, I’m sorry. Call her out on her shit, because I know I don’t put up with that kind of crap, regardless if it’s racism, sexism, classism, or somethingelse-ism.

  74. Victoria Marinelli
    Victoria Marinelli March 31, 2008 at 7:15 pm |

    To Latoya Peterson’s comment:

    Clinton has a legion of smart, influential feminists going to bat for her in the media and in the blogosphere who accuse Obama supporters of race baiting and making things up. Racism and sexism are both pervasive. If you hear more sexism than racism, I would suggest that is because of your lens of perception. I personally perceive more racism toward the Obamas (subtle and overt) than sexism toward Clinton (which is boldly overt), but that is because my lens views race more prominently than it views sexism.

    Yes, yes, yes. These are not mutually exclusive biases. The recognition of one does not require the willful ignorance concerning the other.

    * APPLAUDS WILDLY *

  75. octogalore
    octogalore March 31, 2008 at 9:20 pm |

    Zuzu, great post and I agree completely with what you say in #64. I’m not sure why we cannot focus here on the issues faced by the female candidate. If we had a WOC candidate, that would require looking at race and misogyny. Why should folks on a feminist blog focus as much attention on issues faced by a male candidate of any color? As you say, it’s a feminist blog. For women of all colors, but for women. And as you also say, there are many other liberal blogs giving primary focus to non-gender-related issues. Feminism does need to take into accout multiple oppressions, but the common theme should be women. If we aren’t about that, then who will be?

    For a shameless plug on this topic: http://octogalore.blogspot.com/2008/03/inadequacy.html

  76. Oh
    Oh March 31, 2008 at 10:01 pm |

    I’m not sure why we cannot focus here on the issues faced by the female candidate.

    Well, one of the issues that involves the female candidate is how race and racism play out in her campaign and voters’ responses. That may not be an issue some people care to think about, but it is, in fact, an issue that has to do with Clinton.

    Clinton does not get to swim in a magical sea of race-neutrality simply because she’s a female candidate.

    Sure, it’s not on-topic to say, “But what about racism?” when a post is focused on misogyny. But, actually, this post is not focused *just* on misogyny–it brings up race, to say that Obama’s getting all the necessary media support when it comes to racism. I and a lot of other people don’t think that’s true, and remarks like “And while there are hundreds if not thousands of other blogs as well as entire networks and mainstream media outlets rushing to the defense of Obama (thus rendering anything I have to say pretty well redundant), there are few outlets calling out misogynistic attacks on Clinton and/or on her supporters” sound very unfortunately like complaints about blacks unfairly getting to win the Oppression Olympics.

  77. holler.
    holler. March 31, 2008 at 10:58 pm |

    “I figure that I trust Hillary more than Obama because I have more in common with her: my gender. It might also be because the hateful rhetoric of Obama supporters makes me saddened to the state of the Democratic party. Or that, of all things, I’m a Feminist and an advocate of the “Female Agenda” first. Or it might be because I feel that she’s more qualified, that Obama doesn’t differ from her on enough issues to be granted the kind of sainthood he has, and that I like her stances on positions more. Great, so I happen to be a white woman, just like Hillary. Congratulations. My beef with Obama has nothing to do with his race. I don’t like his JFK-like tactics of grandstanding. I don’t like his rabid supporters who kicked me out of a club I helped found. I don’t like the fact that media seems to enjoy the sweet taste of his testicles. I also don’t like that throwing my lot in with Hillary makes other people think it their duty to allude to my racism, which I don’t think I have provided any evidence for in any of my commentaries.”

    The sweet taste of his testicles? Come on now, LOL.

    The misogyny and sexist attacks Clinton has received were to be expected, in my opinion, just like the racism Obama’s gotten. Nothing new there. My problem is that most of the more prominent (and particularly offensive) racist attacks on Obama? Have come from Clinton herself and/or her camp in general. So, yes, you may have a white female agenda, and you may think that voting in a white woman would be the best thing for your other white female peers–but let’s be frank and call it what it is. Why throw up this whole veil of “female unity” when you are certainly not thinking of my womanhood nor of any other women of color if you’d consciously vote in someone who’s alienated us entirely using blatantly racist attacks? I mean, who is your hypothetical agenda supposed to help, exactly?

  78. Obama: bowls like a girl. Clinton: girl. : Historiann : History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present

    […] student and top Obama advisor Austan Goolsbee over spring rolls and nam pla.  Yum!)  See also this analysis of how the orgy of Clinton-bashing works to keep all of us mouthy broads in our place…, and this one […]

  79. Sarana
    Sarana April 1, 2008 at 1:47 am |

    Excellent piece. Why is it that sexism and misogyny have become acceptable. Or maybe they just went underground until “the patriarchy” was threatened by a female politician.
    Go Hillary.

  80. CLD
    CLD April 1, 2008 at 9:12 am |

    Great post, zuzu. I understand what you’re trying to do here. I can also see the WOC POV with regard to racism; although I don’t think you’re trying to put sexism/misogyny at odds with it. Thanks for putting it out there.

  81. Offsprung > Unsprung » Kids love Obama

    […] and promise to withhold in the future), and living in denial about the fact that your opposition is facing racist/sexist attacks. Different sides have committed various sins in different amounts, but on that last one, the guilt […]

  82. ruth
    ruth April 2, 2008 at 3:19 pm |

    WONDERFUL post. I’m so glad I came across it (on tpm). thank you so much for writing it.

    I’m a 54-year-old woman who until this campaign was proud of “not being a feminist.” I truly did not see misogyny in this country and I felt that I had never been a victim of it.

    since Iowa, however, and thanks especially to the knuckleheads at MSNBC, I now see clearly that I was soooo wrong about this.

    for the poster above who wonders why “I don’t like the sound of her voice” is sexist, let me explain: if Clinton is attacked for something a man would never be attacked for, it’s probably sexism. remember that photo on drudge, showing her looking “wrinkly” and exhausted? remember all those sniping attacks on everything from the size of her ankles to the infidelity of her husband to “do we really want to see a woman grow old in this office?” to remarks about her pantsuits–try and imagine people saying this about a male candidate.

    thanks again. I’m bookmarking this blog and “I shall return” ;-)

  83. Feministe: Why Calling Out Misogyny Matters « The Kitchen Table

    […] Feministe: Why Calling Out Misogyny Matters Jump to Comments Writing what has been gnawing at me for months, Feministe blogger zuzu  expresses it perfectly.  Please read “Why calling out misogyny matters“. […]

  84. LanceThruster
    LanceThruster April 2, 2008 at 6:59 pm |

    While I agree with the belief that misogyny is reprehensible, I’ve found that the sexism is clearly a two-way street even from those objecting to sexism against Hillary. I identified myself as an Obama supporter at the TN Guerilla Woman blog and without denigrating HRC for being female, there were many comments focusing on attacking my masculinity via my handle. I was accused of being limp and flaccid, a needle dick, a pinprick, etc, etc as well as some comment fixated on me prancing around in an apron for whatever reason. (the nick came from Megawars gaming and is meant to be reminiscent of Buck Rogers, Flash Gordon, Buzz Lightyear, etc – a goof, though the double entendre is intentional). I was banned shortly afterward, not for sexist comments but rather for linking to articles giving details about Hillary’s prayer group the Fellowship as they were trumpting Hillary’s statement that she would have walked out on Pastor Wright.

    http://www.motherjones.com/news/feature/2007/09/hillarys-prayer.html

    and

    http://www.insider-magazine.com/ChristianMafia.htm

    and

    http://www.harpers.org/archive/2003/03/0079525

    Just my two cents. I do not like Hillary as a candidate, but it has nothing to do with her gender. The only candidate I’ve donated any money to so far is Cindy Sheehan. I hope others rally to her defense as fervently as is done for Hillary as I have seen blogs talk of how ugly she is (or how rarely she wears a dress) or her need of dental work, or just that she looks old and out of shape (ageism and body standards bias).

  85. Sherry Chandler
    Sherry Chandler April 3, 2008 at 2:11 pm |

    […] Why Calling Out Mysogyny Matters […]

  86. Cheryl Suchors
    Cheryl Suchors April 3, 2008 at 6:19 pm |

    I so appreciate this column and your thoughts.

    Yes, misogyny hurts us all. Pretending it does not, or that the treatment of Senator Clinton is not misogynistic, also hurts us all. I wouldn’t support racist treatment of Senator Obama; so why am I supposed to be okay with sexist treatment of Senator Clinton? I am not okay with it and I hope I never will be.

  87. isaac
    isaac April 3, 2008 at 6:59 pm |

    bien dicho!

    but wait, we really cant make fun of jonah goldberg anymore?

  88. isaac
    isaac April 3, 2008 at 7:27 pm |

    with regard to hillary not being present at bill’s post monica news conferences: doesnt that speak well of her vis-a-vis the feminist perspective, that she was not willing to be a prop in her husband’s drama a la, ms. vitter, spitzer et al?

  89. NancyH
    NancyH April 4, 2008 at 9:14 am |

    Thank you for a wonderfully written column. You intelligently give voice to what I believe women of all ages, races, and statures are experiencing during this historical process. May your writing reach those who need it most.

    Nancy

  90. A letter to young feminists : Vincesiragusodc

    […] was reading zuzu’s excellent post today on why sexist framing of Hillary Clinton matters, and decided to write a post I’ve been […]

  91. don't ya wish your girlfriend was smart like me?

    Recommended Reading…

    This is a great post not only about the misogyny against Sen. Clinton, but about how women are discounted, dismissed, and insulted everyday and all this Clinton crap is just the public face of a culture that does not take women seriously….

  92. Antonn
    Antonn April 11, 2008 at 11:20 am |

    Considering that Obama and Clinton are very close in policies..It is hard to believe that gender bias is not playing a role in the decision of who men and some women support. The US is falling behind many countries on how women are perceived as potential leaders, even Chile and Argentina are more progressive.

  93. Jana
    Jana April 12, 2008 at 10:17 am |

    Men of color obtained the right to vote in this country before women. The pecking order still persists. Unfortunately, things change slowly. A man of color will almost certainly be elected President before a woman will. It pisses me off, too. But in the overall scheme of things, it represents progress.
    Unfortunately, Hillary carries history and baggage with her to the campaign. I am a native of Arkansas and have watched the Clintons for a long time. I voted for him. The reality is, in my opinion, she is unlikely to defeat McCain. Obama has a better shot for reasons about which I will not elaborate here. Getting the white house back is the most important thing right now. It will probably be a long time before another viable female presidential candidate comes along. But, having said that, Obama arrived on the scene, and so may another strong female candidate. Let’s hope so!

  94. Radfem
    Radfem April 12, 2008 at 12:15 pm |

    I wouldn’t support racist treatment of Senator Obama; so why am I supposed to be okay with sexist treatment of Senator Clinton? I am not okay with it and I hope I never will be.

    So you do speak out against racist treatment of Obama when it happens, right? Because it happens. Where I work, we discuss the latest examples every day. And most of those I work with are women, not men. What else is interesting is how Black women in particular get rendered invisible when it comes to discussing the impact of the involvement of women in the Democratic campaign and election process. When most articles talk about the involvement of women, they talk about Hillary Clinton’s supporters and how an unprecedented number of women are involved solely because she’s running. Yet, buried in these same articles are references made that an unprecedented number of Black women in certain states but also overall are involving themselves in Obama campaign. They’re not viewed as “women” though by these articles and not really included as a focus because they’re not supporting or working for the female candidate.

    The thing to do in this case is to write what’s truth, that an unprecedented number of women are getting involved in this year’s Democratic campaign and election process, regardless of what candidate they support.

    The US is falling behind many countries on how women are perceived as potential leaders, even Chile and Argentina are more progressive.

    I can’t speak for those countries but the U.S. isn’t really progress in terms of how it sees men of color and women (incuding women of color) as potential leaders. After all, even though White women might not be seen as potential leaders to the extent of White men (and I think it’s arguable whether they are seen as moreso than Black men or other men of color), but probably much more than women of color are at this point. Because you know what? There’s a woman of color who is running for president, at least one and what do you hear or read about her?

    Men of color obtained the right to vote in this country before women. The pecking order still persists. Unfortunately, things change slowly. A man of color will almost certainly be elected President before a woman will. It pisses me off, too. But in the overall scheme of things, it represents progress.

    I’m not so sure about this and I don’t think you can base the probability on the history of the sufferage movements. I do think what men of color and women do in common is that whoever does get elected first (or possibly even simultaneously), most likely that person will be a Republican. There are also cases like with Obama of biracial or multi-racial candidates perhaps getting elected.

  95. Radfem
    Radfem April 12, 2008 at 12:21 pm |

    And actually though quite a few Latinas including in California support Clinton, they’re not really visible in the coverage of all the “women” who support Clinton either.

    California’s doing the delegate thing tomorrow even in the face of purges by both candidates b/c after all, Californians are just so untrustworthy. They’re all practically at the same time and the Obama one is closer. Most of the people I know who are going out for positions for the convention are women and they’re split between the two.

  96. Top 10: Why I Might Support Obama | Cyborg Yoryie

    […] Cyborg is a Misogynist. […]

  97. Muriel Strand
    Muriel Strand April 20, 2008 at 10:37 am |

    i found your website by googling “sports psychology misogyny”. for reasons you can read about on my website, i don’t have time right now to read your site in depth, but i will bookmark it.

    the reason for my search is that one of my opponents is kevin johnson the famous (locally) basketball star. the word on the street is the the SPOA (cops union) endorsed him because they all got to meet with him and get autographs. i have heard other things on the street that make me dig deeper.

    muriel

  98. saz
    saz April 22, 2008 at 11:51 pm |

    OK I am now slightly disturbed by the coverage, particularly Daisy’s idea that: ‘Obama seems to be getting the same kind of pass, due to race and his unconventional, hard-to-define upbringing’ What on earth does that mean? Are we unable to make a decision regardless of race, background and upbringing or is this as racist and clasist as it it seems? ‘Unconventional’ is always shorthand for ‘oooh something I just don’t understand’…I’m sorry but Hillary is an upper middle class, wealthy woman who made millions from sitting on capitalist boards.
    Personally to me Hillary stands for privilege above all, the upper middle classes above all, power before everything and for god sake don’t let anyone of colour have a viewpoint. This is a woman who led Pennsylvania by 20 and had that halved but somehow that’s still a win. A woman who would rather support her Republican opponent than just say ‘oh I lost this state for this reason but I won here because I should have.’

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    […] illustrate, let’s take a look at this post from Zuzu on Feministe. I selected this post because it is the least controversial example I […]

  100. Feministe » Some of the Right Things

    […] primary season has been evidence, if more was needed, of that. See Zuzu’s posts here and here. And I say that as someone who never intended to, and did not, vote for […]

  101. Daughter of the Ring of Fire » Blog Archive » Oh Look, More Sexism on a Supposedly Progressive Website

    […] reiterate, I do not support Hillary Clinton. However, videos like this one posted on Alternet have consequences far beyond an attack on single individual. By comparing Senator Clinton to Tonya Harding, the video suggests that any woman who fights for […]

  102. A Dad
    A Dad May 21, 2008 at 11:41 am |

    Well, I’ll certainly keep it in mind.

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