Sexism in Action, or my Affair with NPR

22 May

(You can blame this post on NPR.)

Every day, on the way home from work, I tune it for All Things Considered and enjoy the beauty that it NPR.  Seriously, it’s just good radio.  They bring up such fabulous issues and tell such good stories that, by the time I get home each day, I’m feeling all thought-provoked and smart-like.  It’s good stuff.

While I tend to avoid getting all political on this here blog of mine, sometimes I just can’t help it.  Especially when NPR gets me all fired up and they start talking about sexism because really, at the heart of who I am, I am a sociologist.  I can’t help but get all pissy and agitated about things not going right in the good ole US of A.

So today, they had Pat Schroeder, a former Colorado congresswoman, on to talk about Hilary and what’s going on with her campaign, and, specifically the sexism she’s encountered.  And you know what?  In true NPR fashion they brought up a damn good point.  Nobody seems to mind when political commentators say things like “men won’t vote for Hillary because she reminds them of their nagging wives,” or “when HIllary talks all men hear is ‘take out the garbage.'”  But what would happen if we switched that up?  What if, as people pick at Hillary for having ovaries, we picked on Obama for being Black?  Wouldn’t someone stand up pretty damn quickly if someone made a reference to slavery in regards to Obama?  Uh, yeah.  You bet they would.  What more, they wouldn’t be called sissies for being pissed about it and they certainly wouldn’t complain that he couldn’t handle the heat if he spoke out about it, unlike what would likely happen if Hillary attempted to address the rampant sexism she’s encountered.

I guess I just don’t get it.  Society seems to have grasped the concept that racism is ridiculous and cannot be tolerated, but sexism is good as gold around these parts.  Bah humbug.


3 Responses to “Sexism in Action, or my Affair with NPR”

  1. anOCgirl May 23, 2008 at 7:01 AM #

    oh yes. misogyny. the last acceptable form of discrimination.

    you know what i wish? i really wish that hillary would make a speech about sexism, just like obama did about racism before the PA primaries. i just think that, while it may not fix anything, it would be a step in a positive direction.

  2. Julie May 26, 2008 at 9:54 AM #

    Isn’t there inherent sexism in the fact that Senator Clinton is so often referred to as Hilary, while Senator Obama is usually called either Obama or Senator Obama?

  3. instatick May 26, 2008 at 10:27 AM #


    I don’t think so. I think I call Hillary Hillary because if I were to say Clinton it would get confusing due to her husband. I think she’s called by her first name out of necessity more than because of sexism.

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