Today the media is dancing on Hillary’s grave, thrilled to the very tips of their dicks (prosthetic or otherwise) that The Bitch Is Going Down. It’s pre-New Hampshire all over again, though this time it may be for real.
The sexist old guard is not about to let a woman become President. Some stupid twat in the White House? Are you fucking kidding? Much better to have the Tasteful Black Man. The old guard is racist, too, but there’s no question that at this point in our nation’s life, the media and most of the establishment are more amenable to voting for a black man than for any woman.
And they are joined in this by the sexist new guard, the post-backlash generation that is every bit as misogynistic — if not more so — than their predecessors.
Melissa at Shakespeare’s Sister has done a round-up of all the Hillary Sexism Watch posts at her place; there are sixty-two. Sixty-two posts, and that’s just since September. I was reading through the comments there and this one jumped out at me:
How this got so polarized is beyond me, then I remember that it’s the twenty-somethings who are coming out in droves for Barack, the ones who trash people (particularly women) with glee at the slightest hint of disagreement, the ones who urge young women to commit suicide, the ones who think rape is funny, the ones who dress provocatively and point video cameras up their (nearly nonexistent) skirts because their boyfriends want them to…. yeah, those kids. Do I sound old? I am. And it’s depressing to see that this is the generation that’s supposed to bring “change” to the world. What, exactly will change, or has changed? You think it’s great that you have the freedom to be dismissive, obnoxious, self-absorbed, nasty a**holes?
Exactly. The glorious youth of today. O joy.
See, if you’re a decrepit old person like me and you came of age in the 70s, it is painfully obvious that my generation, the feminist generation that grew up with the Second Wave, is an aberrant hiccup. Before us there was the Rat Pack world of Frank Sinatra and Hugh Hefner, where all the women were broads and dames; after us is the hip-hop world of Snoop Dogg and Joe Francis, where all the women are hos and bitches. It’s the post-backlash, kill-the-feminazis, all-porn-all-the-time culture of exuberant misogyny. My generation certainly included plenty of sexists, but we also created a brief moment in time when it was actually cool to be a feminist. When respect for women as fully realized human beings was the “in” thing. Those days are long gone. Even while the political demands of liberal feminism have become mainstream — equal pay, etc. — social attitudes towards women are more dismissive and degrading than I’ve ever seen in my life.
Go to some lowest-common-denominator site like YouTube or a gamer forum or something and read the threads. These are the moronic youth of America, people who can barely even spell, much less string a sentence together. Notice how they think. They’ll lecture each other self-importantly about how evil racism is (to the extent that they possess sufficient human language to “lecture” anybody about anything), but when it comes to women, holy christ. It’s all skanks and hos and fuk u bitch and I’d hit that and lol she nasty cum ho and suk it u bitch — and those are just the nice comments.
All you have to do is listen to a few rap songs or watch a couple of hip-hop videos or check out the porn landscape — the mind-boggling miasma of misogyny with which today’s generation is saturated — and you realize that there is no way in hell most young people would ever get behind a woman for President. Bitches be for fucking! Clothes off, face down, ass up!
P.S. Almost forgot Camille. Poor old Camille, still on her lifelong quest to never miss an opportunity to ridicule women and feminism. Her piece in Salon today: “Old-guard feminists caterwaul for Hillary.”
26 Responses to “The anti-Hillary Wave: the sexist old guard plus the sexist new guard. And of course Camille Paglia”
simply wondered says:
i don’t believe everything is that bad. sure in the uk there are kids who are happy to vote for cameron because blair is what they grew up with and they never saw that even at his slimy worst he was still no follower of thatcher (who?). that beneath the sleaze, the spin and the amazing late conversion to catholicism, they still passed minimum wage legislation, that it is a country where people can’t legally spit at you for being the wrong race, religion, class or sex (i said legally); where the human rights act enshrines some rights that we always thought we had but never did, where the kids are taught in school that caring for each other is important and that community is not the ‘c’word.
there are a generation of young women, some of whom do not even question the right to be thought of as equal, to choose education, work or family or all of it, who would not see suffragettes as anything but history because of course they have the vote. now i’m not claiming we are anywhere near nirvana or that we are all equal or even nice; and i am unsettled by the fragility of a victory that has become so accepted that it and the women (and occasionally men) who won it with their blood, their passion and their sacrifice are practically invisible.
and there are plenty of young women who don’t ask anyone what to think or how to vote, who make up their own minds, who won’t have their questions fobbed off, who want to run their country or just run a marathon.
they are the daughters (real and figurative) of feminists who came of age in the 70s. it’s not like you haven’t made your mark yet.
It’s almost enough to make an old girl cry.
I hate to sound like an old codger, longing for the days when…, but every time I glimpse one of those Girls Gone Wild commercials (shudder), I wonder what these girls are thinking, where are their parents, don’t they care that way too many yucky people (people they’d cross the street to avoid in real life) are going to view their private parts?
I don’t view myself as anti-sex, but it sure seems like an awful lot of women, particularly younger women, are wholeheartedly grabbing onto the idea that they will be super-cool if they become cartoonish “hos” and “bitchez.” Kind of like the sex-friendly-version of Ann Coulter — if I act enough like the men want and cohere more closely to their world view than even they do, then they’ll really, really like me.
I’m not convinced that Senator Clinton needs to throw in the towel, yet, despite the meme-of-the-moment in the “news.” But regardless of this election’s results, I have her to thank for causing me to take a fresh look at feminism and woman’s place in this country. How far we haven’t come is daunting.
I hate to sound like an old codger, longing for the days when…
I’m a young…codger?…also longing for the days when….
I don’t want to downplay the role of the media in the resurgence of open, casual, mainstream, extreme misogyny, but I genuinely wonder if the backlash isn’t cultural so much as a case of low-IQ people outbreeding high-IQ people. Only my dumb acquaintance-type friends are ever into this anti-woman cultural nonsense, while my smart friends live in the same culture and reject its stupidity.
On the other hand, the internet has changed communication and entertainment. It offers a place for hatred to live, fester, flourish, become normalized. Had it existed in the second-wave era, I wonder if the constant, unhinged, consequence-free sexist propaganda would have undermined the movement of your generation as well.
I resent the implication that my generation are all morons. What you see in the media are just a tiny percentage of us, as I’m sure you know. Many of the people I know who are voting for Obama are voting for him not because they think that it would be better to have a man in office, but they believe in his politics and they are passionate for what he stands for, the same as anyone else of any other generation. Shouldn’t we all be proud that these primaries have encouraged so many young people to get out and vote? We are not all slaves to the internet. Many of us, especially those of voting age, grew up as the internet while the internet was “growing up” and know to not take everything said on it completely seriously. The YouTube crowd cannot be claimed as representative only of my generation. Yes, I also think it is abhorrent that people are too lazy to spell out their words, but not everybody does that. Some people also make mistakes on the internet that they regret later, but isn’t that part of being human, to make mistakes and be able to learn from them.
Yes, I realize the 70s must have been great for feminists and I’m sure it was a hoot to grow up in, but now there are new challenges. We are dealing with abstinence-only education policies, the increasing price of birth control, the decreasing availability of abortions, having to choose between firsts for president (first black man or first woman?), and the implications of a whole slew of difference identity politics in the feminist movement. This is what activism is about in my generation. It is different than that of the second-wave 70s feminism, but no less important to us than that was to the young people of that generation.
Oops, that should be “different identity politics”.
I’m not sure whether Obama will deliver. And it’s right to look for sex in candidates. However, although I truly think it’s time for a woman to become president, Hillary is just too conservative for my taste. Hell, she’s more conservative than McCain in many respects although I consider the latter to be quite an ass.
Still, look at female leaders, e.g. Maggie Thatcher, Angela Merkel (Germany). Are they really different from their male counterparts ? I don’t think so. So, what’s the big deal ? Well, I think those women really have male brains. That’s the problem. If you wanted a female (brain) president, you had him (her): Jimmy Carter. Ok, just kidding as far as the stupid ‘brain sex’ thing goes, but I still consider Carter to have been one of the finest presidents ever. Well, not that hard maybe.
Y’know who I miss? Radical writer alyx from the former blog Mad Shelia Musings. Back in March 2006 I declared March 9 to be “Mad Sheilas Day” and I was planning on holding onto this writing tidbit until then, but it’s just too perfect for the moment. I wish I’d saved every post she wrote in the genderberg forums but only pieces remain.
FYI, I was born at either the very end of Gen X or the very beginning of Gen Y depending on who you ask; both lay claim to the mid 1970s.
The Generation Y Manifesto
What you Boomers and Gen Xers don’t seem to understand is, Generation Y doesn’t want to be free from anything. Not violence or sexism or racism or homophobia or rape or war or porn or fashion or Eminem or McDonald’s. Or capitalism. Especially not capitalism. Why? Because capitalism embodies all the qualities that will enable it to succeed where other ideologies have failed—it has no morals, no ethics and no requirement that its adherents to do anything except spend, for which they will be rewarded with eternal bliss. Sure, being free FROM war and rape and all that would be great, but we’re realistic—that’s not going to happen. So we’d rather be able to live our lives the way we see fit—as the Gods and Goddesses of our own personal consumerist universes, socially and politically isolated yet free TO act and behave and spend however the fuck we like.
See, the Boomer$ and Generation XXX have this crazy idea that morality is something immutable and universal. The former thinks that morality is something we should aspire to; be good citizens and all that. The latter looks upon morality with its characteristic sneeriness (‘Morality is so hetero-patriarchal and lame.’) Gen Y, on the other hand, knows the truth—morality is neither universal nor immutable, but highly personal and can be modified according to the dictates of social trends, fashion and business. Passé to rebel against Fox? Consider the urge to rebel gone. Want to make shitloads of cash by selling your brand of Pimp n’ Ho streetwear to eight-year-olds, but are worried about the ethical implications of taking sexist ideas about gold-digging bitches to the playground? I’m sorry, I stopped listening after ‘shitloads of cash.’ Can you repeat the question?
In the place of caring about others, care of, by and for The Self reigns supreme. So write your obituaries for Feminism, Socialism, Humanism, Religion, etc., say a short prayer (or whatever) and move on. The ideologies of the past will no longer be able to suffice in a world where Green politics are Out and The Mean Green is In.
Gen Y has banished all false gods and ideologies to the history books. The only thing we worship is the Almighty Dollar, the only thing we care about are the things that affect us personally—paying the bills, putting food in our mouths, wearing nice clothes, and maybe making others jealous with the cool shit we own along the way. We have no group allegiances and no reason to think we owe anyone else squat. What you call ‘selfishness’, we call ‘self-fulfillment.’ What you call ‘textbook delusions of grandeur,’ we call ‘my future aspirations.’ And what you call, ‘being a mindless pawn enamoured of celebrities, junk food and fashion’, we call ‘Life.’
I am a member of Generation Y. I Spend Therefore I Am.
The Ghost of Violet says:
VJ says: “I resent the implication that my generation are all morons. What you see in the media are just a tiny percentage of us, as I’m sure you know.”
I certainly didn’t mean to imply that all members of your generation are morons; that would be an extraordinary and I’m sure unprecedented circumstance in the history of our species. It sounds like you’re one of the non-morons yourself, and I congratulate you. By the way, though, about the intertubes: the people on the tubes may be a small percentage of the total, but basic statistics suggest that if most of your generation were pro-feminist intelligentsia, that would be reflected online. And it’s not. The ubiquitous asswipery of your generation online is, I think, a strong indicator of the tenor of the times.
Daki says: “However, although I truly think it’s time for a woman to become president, Hillary is just too conservative for my taste.”
She’s too conservative for me, as well, but please note that Obama is even more conservative. Where their positions differ, Hillary is to the left of Barack.
Sam: that’s a brilliant bit of writing, though it looks like some of your fellow Gen Yers will disagree. I especially love, “I’m sorry, I stopped listening after ‘shitloads of cash.’ Can you repeat the question?”
The Ghost of Violet says:
Oh, Daki, I forgot this:
Hell, she’s more conservative than McCain in many respects although I consider the latter to be quite an ass.
What? In what respect is Hillary more conservative than McCain?
Mary Tracy9 says:
That “Generation Y Manifesto” was good. I only hope it was a criticism of it, and not an actual Gen Y-er view of life.
And yes, MY GENERATION IS QUITE MORONIC. I don’t like the idea of presenting oneself as “the exception”, BUT it’s the sheer truth. At any rate, they laugh at my political beliefs, so I am well justified for laughing at them back.
Hope this doesn’t sound like a cop out, but I while I have now looked at pages of poll data, I have not taken the time to write up a detailed analysis. So what follows doesn’t really count as evidence.
But I am almost certain that you are right and that you are backed up by all the data I have seen. To borrow a pretty outdated sociological term, gender (not race) has become the master-status (or primary identifier) of both Clinton and Obama.
And with all my rage against male privilege and those who are its happy beneficiaries (me, on occasion, can’t deny it) a year ago if I had been given this scenario I would not have been able to make an educated guess how this would unfold. My guts would have morphed back and forth between sexism and racism.
And what I would have done is look at a slew of the standard opinion research sources and concluded that , for most but not all, demographic groups, race would have trumped everything else and that a black male candidate would primarily have been seen as black and that a white female would probably been seen primarily as white.
But that didn’t happen, especially with affluent white males who have some college education or more.
There has been a steady movement of these men toward Obama. These seem to be men whose racial tolerance is less a principled decision than a situational choice to fend off having to chose a strong woman.
And what a wonderful and convenient scenario we have given them. What I mean is that a black, but not too black, male (one I admire and support, by the way) has become a wonderful cover for men who want to embed their sexism in respectability. It is the dream cover for any person with any prejudicial axe to grind, i.e. a chance to fully express one bias while completely and fully draped in another virtue.
By the way, I don’t mean to suggest that the racial tolerance expressed by these men is always disingenuous. Some white men making this choice are really open to Obama’s candidacy and have truly jettisoned the race thing. That this allows them to camouflage sexism is simply a bonus. And some of them have not made a covert sexist calculus (me, for example).
But consider this: What if Hillary’s opponent was a progressive white male who had some sexist crap in his past like serial infidelity, or a guy like Senator Packwood, a slew of historic allegations of sexual harassment. A dick, in other words.
Then what would the educated, affluent white male do? When he felt his latent sexism coming to the surface, he would find himself with a choice that sucks. To choose the man, he would have to choose a putz and, when explaining his vote to his peers, have to come up with a convoluted explanation of why Senator Sleazeball would actually be the better candidate and even a good candidate for women’s issues. This would be much harder, although never underestimate the ability of men who want to camouflage their sexism.
So what I suspect is happening is that many white men, even those who have thought about sexism and male privilege and who feel committed to an egalitarian society, are now for they very first time confronting the real possibility of a woman being a President. And not just any woman, but a harpie, a ball-buster. All of a sudden a black guy starts to look a lot more acceptable. He’s a guy. A guy. A real guy. With a strong wife, who is pretty hot to boot.
Having said all this, I have to say that I do not support Hillary Clinton and do support Obama. Everything I feel and think tells me that I am not one of these men I have been describing. But neither can I say that gender doesn’t float into my consciousness sometimes and, to my own shock, lead me to briefly wonder: What WOULD it be like to have a woman president? I conclude that it would be fine, but it is not at all insignificant that the question even comes to me in the first place. Why, even for several seconds, am I even wondering about this? To be determined.
My Hillary problem, by the way, is a function of the first Clinton administration, in which the ongoing Clinton soap opera completely hijacked the public agenda and forced a President and his spouse, both of whom I admired and fully supported, to spend all the valuable political capital they had accumulated on saving their behinds rather than passing the legislation that so many of us had hoped for. Political capital is hard-earned, and I simply can’t gamble on a second Clinton administration that might again fall victim to some Clintonian nonsense that would again squander political capital. Too much is at stake.
But don’t worry. I have a sense of how this very well might play out that will end happily for Hillary. Just a guess.
I really think it possible that, just as many upscale white men are just now discovering their latent sexism and providing my candidate Obama with important electoral margins, upscale white women are also catching on quickly. Very quickly.
And the first evidence of what I predict will be an incredibly strong reactive tide of women from diverse demographic groups voting for Hillary (and I mean an unprecedented turnout) will be in Wisconsin, and then Pennsylvania and Ohio.
Why? I could be wrong, but I think many women will have true “Ah Ha” moments when they realize that so much Obamania is not primarily a new found racial tolerance by their husbands and sons and male colleagues and friends, but actually a nifty way to hide the worry eating at them just under the surface:
“You mean a woman is going to be the boss, is going to fucking tell me what to do?”
What? In what respect is Hillary more conservative than McCain?
Ok, a bit of a hyperbole there. However, look how Hillary applauded Bush when he said the surge in Iraq was working. Ok, McCain did that too. However, McCain has vehemently spoken out against torture and Guantanamo. AFAIK, Hillary hasn’t. It’s not alot, I’ll admit. Hillary has her liberal sides, like in healthcare. Still, she has the 6th most conservative voting track in the Senate, or so I’ve heard. Ah, and Ann Coulter is endorsing Hillary rather than McCain because she thinks Hillary is more conservative, well, and smarter. She might have a point there…
Level Best says:
I know, Ghost of Violet. I despair. I hold out some weensy hope, though, that what we see througout the Web and the MSM is an over-representation of teenage boy mentality simply because they’re the ones who have the combination of tech-interest and time to endlessly stay on the computer (cranking out mysogny) and watch TV (being pandered to by the MSM). Whatever the case, though, the double-whammy of secular misogny and fundamentalist religious misogny right now is depressing enough to make me want to eat even more Russell Stover’s today than I have. Happy Valentine’s Day, Awesome GOV.
Hillary Rodham Clinton has a long progressive track record. Conservatives don’t work for the Children’s Defense Fund, nor do they spend much time preaching about women’s rights.
Her lifetime progressive score of 91.11 compares to Obama’s 88.37.
That’s from Progressive Punch which is much more reliable than the conservative National Journal which ranks Obama as the most liberal senator in the senate, more liberal even than socialist Bernie Sanders! (They did the same to Kerry when he ran.)
Virginia Ray says:
This post was so sweet and so true I am happy tonight. Could Not have said it better – forwarded it to my friends. Too bad Andrea Dworkin is dead or maybe better that she did not live to see this. But your words are what she would say – Thanks
Virginia Ray says:
BTW, I note you said equal pay is common place — the Supremes declared the Equal Pay Act unconstitutional or some such crap that nullified it. Congress allegedly is trying to restore it but it has been over a year and they have not managed to do so — just google equal pay act.
Maybe the young women and the anti feminists our age will actually have to live in the world their male heroes will give them – HA!
The Ghost of Violet says:
Steve: excellent analysis.
Daki: okay, you’re working with some misinformation there. Hillary does not have the 6th most conservative voting record in the Senate, not even close. She’s a lifelong progressive and her rating is more liberal than Obama’s. And Ann Coulter isn’t really endorsing Hillary at all; the running bit with the wingnuts is that they want Hillary to be the nominee because they’re convinced they can beat her. They’ve already spent 16 years painting her as the anti-Christ.
Level Best: what depresses me the most is when I see young females behaving the same way online. “Feminist” is a terrifying word to teenage girls. They think it means something like leper/terrorist/child abuser/puppy killer/Satanist. Even young feminists — how many young feminists have you heard say that they didn’t encounter feminism until college or later? How the fuck is that possible? Can you imagine anybody in America saying that they had never encountered the concept of racial equality until they were 22?
Egalia: good to see you here!
Virginia Ray: you’re right. I just meant that the notion of equal pay is mainstream and acceptable. Which wasn’t the case back in the early 70s.
What I am doing to stay sane right now: reading Andrea Dworkin (‘Our Blood’, especially), Susan Brownmiller, Robin Morgan, and the incredible Clara Fraser. They remind me what I stand for and why, and that sexism is thousands of years old. Women were slaves until this past century, women are still owned by their husbands and fathers in many parts of the world. Some would say that we are still slaves to society, because there is no such thing as ‘second class citizen’ either you have full rights of citizenship or you’re not one at all.
If Hillary Clinton leaves the race, I can go back to supporting my original and favorite candidate: Cynthia McKinney.
I think this would be a great time to organize together; especially those of us who are sick of this s–t!! There are better ways to make change than just voting – we do all of the free labor and cheap labor that keeps this country going. I say it’s time for a women’s strike. A women’s buy nothing day.
Clara Fraser always said, “Don’t agonize- organize!”
I’d love to hear your ideas.
Clara Fraser always said, “Don’t agonize- organize!”
Phone bank and/or give what you can.
She’s still fighting regardless of sexist, latte dude nation or Paglia. Hell, maybe we should make it a game: every time a pundit attacks HRC with a sexist smear, we kick 10 bucks to her campaign.
Just wanted to add a thought on the “equal pay” issue. The conventional wisdom is that all Americans receive equal pay for equal work. Women know, if they will admit it, that such conventional wisdom is — like much conventional wisdom — poppycock.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s website lists the 20 leading occupations of employed women in the U.S. and their median pay. The #1 occupation of employed U.S. women is “Secretaries and Administrative Assistants.” The median weekly earnings for women in these positions is $584, and that is actually one of the higher weekly salaries among women’s top 20 occupations (15 of the 20 listed occupations show lower weekly earnings). The chart is at http://www.dol.gov/wb/factsheets/20lead2006.htm
The #3 occupation for women is “cashiers.” Those lucky gals’ median weekly earnings are $327, a whopping annual salary of $17,004 (no sweet vacays for these workers). As long as they have no more than 2 people in their household, they are above the 2007 HHS poverty threshold. Woohoo! http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/07poverty.shtml
Why would women ever ask for more?
Help! I’m being surrounded by women who hate feminism. Now my neighbor tels me how she thinks Obama will heal the planet. Because his middle name is ‘Hussein’. You all are right – this slightly younger generation does not understand the roots of oppression – especially our oppression as women.
This morning, a woman with a full beard, married to a transgendered woman, claimed I was a separatist because I stood up loud and clear for feminism. She has a political talk show on the radio. People don’t realize that there is a lot of love behind anger – anger can protect you from danger, oppression and injustice.
Do only women over 40 understand the roots of sexism?!
Level Best says:
Julia, I’m right there with you both regarding your reading list for sanity’s sake and your strategy. I notice our mutual sources for inspiration are the voices of the second-wave feminists, which brings us around again to the issue of where are the young feminists?
The feminist blogs I regularly read, the ones I consider right-hearted and substantial (this one, Womensspace: The Margins, Ginmar’s View from a Broad, Echidne, Hecate, and a few others), seemingly are the work of women of 40 or so to around the mid 50′s. Again, these are women of my age cohort.
GOV’s response to my earlier comments described young women reacting to feminism/feminists with repulsion, claims of prior ignorance,and fear as of contagion. I am 54, and when the 2nd wavers started up in the 60′s and 70′s, young women seemed to catch on and start processing their thoughts and experiences and formulating their feminist philosophies and actions spontaneously. What is the difference between that era and today’s?
Sometimes my husband, who is 11 years younger than I, jokes that I was one of the last to benefit from a relatively literate public school system before it went completely to hell. I wonder if the decline in literacy and promotion of classical education has sapped not only general knowledge but critical thinking as well? Are young women relatively without intellectual tools to work with to evaluate women’s place in patriarchy in this society and the world? Yes, they probably read more online than a lot of us older women, but could it be not quite the same thing as overall literacy and comprehension?
Hi, just wanted to chime in to say I am in my early 30′s and I am right there with you in this agony, actually made myself feel BETTER as well by reading “I want a 24-hour truce” and other bits and bobs over the weekend.
I think that many factors have conspired (and I use conspired deliberately) to make younger women (not all, but many) unaware or unmotivated to consider their oppression, not the least of which is pure materialism and the short-lived comfort it brings (you can pretend to have a really fulfilling life by structuring it around buying and owning many different categories of things) but I also think that the awareness of oppression is very very difficult to come to and then to bear if emotional support and healing connections with other women are lacking. Somehow, there is more profound isolation, or perceived isolation for young women now than there may have been during the second wave. If young women can even come close to the awareness, the fear and pain of that is really not easy to sit with unless you KNOW there is someone else to connect with. That’s how it was for me, and still is sometimes, and that makes it easier to pretend everything is fine, and take refuge in other things. Anyway, just my thoughts.
Also, so glad I found you GOV!
PS – I just gave $100 to HRC and feel good about it! Worth a shot!
donna darko says:
Go to some lowest-common-denominator site like YouTube or a gamer forum or something and read the threads. These are the moronic youth of America, people who can barely even spell, much less string a sentence together.
The scary thing is I see this in many Obama supporters.
Virginia Ray says:
You are not alone – we are your sisters in spirit. Know it and believe it. The time is coming when we will manifest in the world. Be ready. We will know each other by our smiles and by where we have been.