Tag Archives: Tammy Bruce

Why Are Feminists Afraid of Palin?

As blog administrators, we can see the search engine queries driving people to our site. “Why feminists fear Palin” is one of the queries I’ve seen in recent days, so I’d like to answer that question directly.

Feminism has a specific definition: advocating for the freedom and rights of women.

As a pro-lifer, Palin is against one of the key tenants of feminism: that women control their bodies without state interference.

Call yourself a pro-life feminist if you’d like, but that’s a contradiction in terms. There is no way around this requirement to be pro-choice if you are a feminist.

You can be a feminist if you believe life begins at conception. You just can’t advocate imposing that belief on other women via the state, forcing thousands of thousands of women to have unwanted children or back-alley abortions, and still call yourself a feminist.

I’ve never been a fan of wishy-washy multiculturalism, with its emphasis on inclusiveness and tolerance. I blame multiculturalism, in part, for the rhetorical troubles we are having today, right now, in our discussion of Palin.

Multiculturalism gave entire generations (including mine) the impression that eating Thai food was a way to fight for social justice.

It also gave the impression that feminism could stretch to mean anything, and include anyone. As the examples of Palin, Paglia, and Bruce all confirm, it can’t.

Feminism doesn’t mean whatever you want it to mean.

I pray women like these three think of another, more honest label for themselves, so I won’t ever have to mention their names and feminism in the same sentence again.

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Filed under election 2008, Social Justice

Lone Feminist for Palin

VP candidate Sarah Palin has whipped at least one pro-choice feminist into an enthusiastic frenzy: “as a pro-choice feminist, I wasn’t the only one thrilled to hear Republican John McCain announce Gov. Sarah Palin as his running mate,” writes Tammy Bruce, former president of the Los Angeles chapter of the National Organization for Women and current Fox News political contributor, in Sunday’s San Francisco Chronicle (9/7/08).

Thrilled. Really?

Bruce is excited over “the chance to vote for a someone [sic] who is her own woman, and who represents a party that, while we don’t agree on all the issues, at least respects women enough to take them seriously.”

According to a list compiled at the National Journal’s blog, this is what it looks like when men, and other women, take women seriously:

Rush Limbaugh: “We’re the ones with the babe on our ticket” — (CNN, 8/29).

Newsweek’s Karen Breslau: “As a journalist, and a female one at that, I am embarrassed to admit that the first thing that struck me about her was that she’s so, well, striking” (Newsweek.com. 8/30).

FNC’s Juan Williams: “I hope I’m not offending anybody in saying that she’s a very attractive woman” (“Fox News Sunday,” 8/31).

TX GOP delegate Patti Johnson: “She’s beautiful to look at. The men are going to love her. She hunts. She fishes” (Houston Chronicle, 8/29).

CNN’s Joe Johns: “I found her to be very funny, very charming” (“AC 360,” CNN, 8/29).

David Gergen: “Joe Johns is right; she seems very, very attractive” (“AC 360,” CNN, 8/29).

Bruce also promises that neither McCain nor Palin want to “kick the gays” and assures us that McCain-Palin Republicans don’t want to make abortion illegal, which is not what McCain says in this video posted on the Jed Report.

Palin is not a new feminist icon. She is not a role model for women’s equality. She is a distraction.

Let’s move on.

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Filed under election 2008