For every 'presidential' and 'charismatic' bestowed on Barack Obama, there are 10 adjectives commentators have used to put down the way Hillary Clinton dresses, talks and emotes. Call this what it is – blatant sexism.Hello, America? Our double standards and unfair treatment of female candidates is blatantly obvious to the rest of the world. The quote above is from the Canadian Globe and Mail. Here's more:
Guess what they call powerful and strong women who support Barack Obama? Obamazons. And what about powerful women who support Hillary Clinton? In Hillaryland, they're probably too damn tired, mystified and disappointed to care all that much about cutesy names.From the Independent UK:
There are certainly legitimate reasons not to like Ms. Clinton, but that doesn't explain the very different treatment she has received in the media. While grown media men and women have swooned over Mr. Obama, confessing that he is so charismatic he gives them goosebumps, Ms. Clinton has been mocked, trivialized and denigrated in a way that should give every woman pause.
Her laugh is a “cackle.” Her daughter Chelsea is being “pimped out.” She is only there because of her husband. She is “inauthentic” and manipulative, especially that time she cried in New Hampshire (and she didn't actually cry, by the way, even though anti-Clinton forces quickly had T-shirts made that said “Cry Baby” on them.)
When Ms. Clinton wasn't very occasionally showing her soft side, she was characterized as grating and aggressive. When she demonstrated how much she knew about so many issues, she was trying too hard to be “the smartest girl in the room.”
Obama has done himself no good with his occasional forays into sexism, like his fraternity-jock remark at the New Hampshire debate, delivered with a cocky smirk, "You're likeable enough, Hillary," or his observation at Tulane that, "You challenge the status quo, and suddenly the claws come out".From the Herald (UK):
It remains to be seen how much two other isms, sexism and racism, matter to American voters. Officially, race and gender are irrelevant; unofficially, many believe that each will count for a lot. It would be tragic if these factors, rather than competence and leadership quality, decided one of the most crucial presidential elections in American history.
And one final thought from from the Globe and Mail:
On one particularly bad day, The New York Times's Maureen Dowd weighed in with one comedian's joke about Mr. Obama winning every recent primary: “Hillary says it's not fair, because they're being held in February, and February is Black History Month. And unfortunately for Hillary, there's no White Bitch Month.”
Well, here's a thought: Perhaps every day is white bitch month for powerful women, and every ambitious and successful woman who is honest with herself and others knows this: As she gets up each morning and slaps on her knee-highs and her pantsuit and goes into the office to prove – yet again – that she is the smartest and most capable person there, she too can quickly engender the same kind of hate that Ms. Clinton has put up with on the campaign trail. Just by being herself.