Author: has written 5300 posts for this blog.

Jill began blogging for Feministe in 2005. She has since written as a weekly columnist for the Guardian newspaper and in April 2014 she was appointed as senior political writer for Cosmopolitan magazine.
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31 Responses

  1. FashionablyEvil
    FashionablyEvil May 5, 2009 at 11:01 am |

    But, Jill, women’s bodies are always up for public consumption, dontcha know?

  2. Complain-o-peeps
    Complain-o-peeps May 5, 2009 at 11:45 am |

    Un-fucking-believable. Or, unfortunately, totally fucking expected. It’s such a toxic mix of misinformation (or “common knowledge”), anti-fat bias, and misogyny. Feminist issue, indeed.

  3. anon
    anon May 5, 2009 at 11:57 am |

    One could only wish that Limbaugh and Rove had been considered entirely unfit to do with they do, then >.<

  4. The Opoponax
    The Opoponax May 5, 2009 at 12:21 pm |

    I didn’t realize that the goal of choosing a SCOTUS justice was to pick the person who’d be on the court the longest. If that’s what we’re after, why not just pick the most promising 3L in the country? I kind of thought the goal was a great judge.

  5. Mama Mia
    Mama Mia May 5, 2009 at 12:25 pm |

    But see, Kim McLane Wardlaw is a “blond Hispanic hottie” with a “fantastic smile and an incredible body”. Why would we even be considering candidates based on their intellect and experience, when this woman has it “all”? She’s probably smart too, but what we really need is a SCILF. We almost had a MILF in the White House, let’s not lose this one, too!

  6. BStu
    BStu May 5, 2009 at 12:42 pm |

    Not to get all, “they aren’t fat”, but THEY AREN’T FAT. You absolutely would not here this kind of fuss being made over male candidates. Case in point: Harold Koh. There has been no shortage of speculation about him as a potential USSC Justice. He’s as “fat” as either Kagan or Sotomayor. Funny how I don’t recall anyone bringing that up during the speculation. Lots of people harbor fat prejudices, but its funny how so many are only spurred to act when a woman is the matter at hand.

  7. On SCOTUS nominees : Writes Like She Talks

    […] or not when thinking about who they want on the Supreme Court of the United States.  Thank you to Feministe for bringing that focus to our attention.  Unbelievable.  And I’m with commenter #7 who […]

  8. SCOTUS Derangement Disorder |

    […] Here’s the Glennzilla doing what he does best, and here (via Amanda Marcotte via Twitter) via Feministe is a pretty blatant example of “if she’s not hot, she’s not worthwhile.” […]

  9. DAS
    DAS May 5, 2009 at 1:30 pm |

    I know I’m not always on the same page with everyone else here in regards to weight issues, but I second what BStu has to say. And as I think we can all agree – if weight is such an issue, how come it’s only being made for women and not for men.

    BTW – I guess my pointing this out just proves I am a straight male pig, but we do have a MILF in the White House: the first lady lives in the White House too. But I guess I am biased where Michelle Obama is concerned: she actually looks like my wife to the extent that when she (Michelle Obama) first appeared on TV, our daughter said “look Mommy’s on TV!”.

  10. L
    L May 5, 2009 at 1:39 pm |

    The funny thing is that if health and the length of time a candidate might be able to serve on the court were really important issues, women would win out every time. Like it or not, women live longer than men on average. Even fat women.

  11. Bagelsan
    Bagelsan May 5, 2009 at 1:42 pm |

    we do have a MILF in the White House: the first lady lives in the White House too.

    Yeah, that *is* kinda tasteless (you had to ask?) Personally, I think of Michelle as more of a MILHGMCCS (Mother I’d Like to Have Give My College’s Commencement Speech)… :D

  12. Bagelsan
    Bagelsan May 5, 2009 at 1:43 pm |

    she actually looks like my wife to the extent that when she (Michelle Obama) first appeared on TV, our daughter said “look Mommy’s on TV!”.

    I missed this part; you’re slightly forgiven. ;p

  13. jess
    jess May 5, 2009 at 1:59 pm |

    Good catch, Jill–how icky and insidious.

  14. Tom Foolery
    Tom Foolery May 5, 2009 at 3:10 pm |

    I love the unapologetic system-gaming that goes on with these appointments (on both sides, natch). Isn’t the point of the whole process to get someone who’s actually going to be good at this, not just someone who will be able to clutch the reins of power with both withered claws until their slow march to eternity finally ends?

  15. bleh
    bleh May 5, 2009 at 3:18 pm |

    doesn’t one of the roberts alito twins have some sort of fainting fits or seizures? no-one suggested that he was too unhealthy.

  16. spiderbaby
    spiderbaby May 5, 2009 at 3:44 pm |

    The thing is, slightly over weight doesn’t necessarily equal unhealthy. You can’t automatically assume that just because these woman might be a little heavier that they are gonna drop dead of a heart attack at 45 or something. And, its already been said but I’m going to say it again, if they were men it wouldn’t matter. Nobody cares if you’re a man in washington and you’re fat and you have a bad suit and a comb-over. But if you’re a woman you have to be smart, good at what you do and have style, be in shape and be good looking. It’s totally unfair.

  17. UnFit
    UnFit May 5, 2009 at 3:46 pm |

    Ya, well, though I find lifetime appointments as such kind of problematic. At least have some mandatory retiring age, or make budding senile dementia grounds for dismissal.

  18. sally
    sally May 5, 2009 at 4:11 pm |

    wha wha what? they aren’t fat.

  19. Shane
    Shane May 5, 2009 at 5:47 pm |

    amen! This is why I hate that stupid book, “Skinny B@#$%”

  20. Femmostroppo Reader - May 6, 2009 — Hoyden About Town

    […] Fat is a Feminist Issue […]

  21. Meowser
    Meowser May 5, 2009 at 6:21 pm |

    I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but other than genetics and fool luck, MONEY and AGE (and of course, not being subjected to daily withering hatred on account of what you look like) are still the best predictors of longevity and health (that is, health good enough to serve as a SCOTUS judge, which as far as I know is still a sedentary profession).

    ANYONE can get cancer or another serious illness; I’ve known my share of thin health nuts who have had to fight for their lives a lot younger than the fat-haters would ever admit. Just this weekend, Vegas headliner Danny Gans, who was thin and by all accounts also a health nut, died of natural causes at age 52. Why we tie longevity to virtue when there’s relatively little connection, I do not understand.

    And like Paul Campos said in his Daily Beast article, even if you’re going by bullshit BMI, if you want someone with the BEST possible chance of living past 80, you pick a woman Sotomayor’s size. (And for gods’ sake, Sotomayor has TYPE 1 diabetes, which has no correlative link to fat AT ALL.)

    I can see not putting someone on the court who has already developed a truly life-threatening illness like a late-stage cancer. But predicting who’s going to HAVE a late-stage cancer? I mean, ever in their lives? Good luck with THAT.

  22. jj
    jj May 5, 2009 at 10:02 pm |

    I’m kind of shocked to read that people think it is okay to factor in health in considering hiring someone. I know that this is a lifelong appointment and, yes, of course we would want someone who could serve for a long time, but that shouldn’t equal stripping away their privacy and considering someone’s health. Do you think it is okay to look through someone’s medical records before hiring them? If taking health into consideration is okay, then it should be okay to mandate a physical, full access to one’s medical records and get the opinions of several doctors. Honestly, if one was to take health into consideration, I would prefer this was done, because it’s the only way to actually know ANYTHING about the person’s health. You know absolutely nothing by looking at them. And if health is to be taken into consideration, does that mean we could do genetic testing to see if they are predisposed to health problems? And well, you know black people are predisposed to high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, and poor people in general are more likely to have poorer health. Forget anybody with congenital but treatable heart defects or disabilities in general since they live shorter lives. And we can say well, OF COARSE we shouldn’t discriminate against them, but if you allow for a nebulus “health and longevity” as being appropriate to consider, then you kind of are allowing for discrimination.

  23. jj
    jj May 5, 2009 at 10:09 pm |

    “Tom Foolery, of course we want someone who will be good at this. But just like with any other job, you want someone with staying power. For a lifetime appointment, you want someone who iwll have time to hone their skills. There’s also something to be said for consistency — that’s one of the reasons why the supreme court has lifetime members. The law needs to be reliable, and its application needs to be predicable. If we have an oft-rotating group of justices, predictability decreases and the whole system is less stable.”

    This sound like what people say when they don’t want to hire women (they may get pregnant and take too much time off…we need our employees to be reliable, having a temp come in for a few months to a year for every woman who wants to give birth decreases stability of the workforce…), or the disabled, or older adults. It’s called discrimination.

  24. Tom Foolery
    Tom Foolery May 6, 2009 at 7:14 am |

    Tom Foolery, of course we want someone who will be good at this. But just like with any other job, you want someone with staying power.

    I’m a little late on the response here, but I’m not implying that the only consideration is their ability to avoid dying for as long as possible — obviously, slavish partisan loyalty is important to both sides, too.

    What I am saying is that no matter how good someone is on the party’s issues, their health will be a key factor in determining whether they get the nom. Which, as someone mentioned is pretty much discrimination, no?

  25. prefer not to say
    prefer not to say May 6, 2009 at 9:35 am |

    Two words as far as health and getting the nod to a major political office goes: Dick Cheney.

    Oh, and two more words: John McCain.

  26. International No-Diet Day « Women In Pants

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  27. Susa
    Susa May 7, 2009 at 1:49 pm |

    Since women generally have a longer life expectency then men, shouldn’t the judges all be female? I mean, on average they live longer…

  28. “coming out” as fat « Ample Proportions

    […] segregation, i.e. I’m one of 3 people of color involved in a group of 20-40 people, but fat is a feminist issue and I think my (wonderful and supportive) already-existing feminist community could stand to be […]

  29. Surviving feminism? « New Media and Contemporary Queer/Feminist Activism in UK (and beyond)

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