Garrett (garote) wrote,
Garrett
garote

A thought about sexism in this presidential race.

I'm still wrestling with the question of how much of the rhetoric in this presidential race is inspired by garden variety sexism.

Eight years ago when Palin ran as a VP pick, it was hugely energizing to the GOP base, but her credentials were so questionable that a backlash started almost immediately. It was clear to Democrats, and eventually clear to almost everyone, that she was chosen because she was a relatively young and pretty woman who was enough of an outsider that the GOP could control her. When she went off-reservation and started spilling her own crazy ideas, we all had fun shouting "I told you so!"

Now we have presidential candidate Hillary who is pushing 70. She's not trending online as a MILF, she's not winking in debates, she's not an outsider that people can project their hopes of revolution onto, and yet ... again ... we have a backlash of people saying "She's just popular because she's a woman."

With Palin it was, "If she wasn't a woman, you'd recognize her as a know-nothing lunatic." With Clinton it's, "If she wasn't a woman, you'd recognize her as corrupt and criminal and evil."

Now, to me, this is apples and oranges, because I think Palin is a know-nothing lunatic, whereas I don't consider Clinton to be criminal or evil, and not particularly corrupt. But what I'm wondering is, how much of the "corrupt and criminal and evil" narrative arose simply because people wanted something to tack on to the end of "If she wasn't a woman..."?
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