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Feminism Today: Crouching Paper Tiger, Hidden Dragon Lady July 18, 2009

Unhappy feminist Thirty some years ago, I remember walking down the aisle of the grocery store with my mother, holding on to the side of the shopping cart.

“Stay with me,” she would warn.

Of course I did not listen and just when she was thumping watermelons in the produce aisle, I would dart off to two places: the Brachs candy stand where I would fill my pockets with orange slices and caramels (without putting a penny in the sample box) and next I was off to the magazine stand.  I loved to read magazines but the only place I could was at the library or the supermarket.   Occasionally, I would grab a child appropriate magazine like Highlights or Jack N’ Jill.  But mostly I would go for the magazines that my mother referred to as “white folks mags”, Family Circle, Better Homes and Gardens, Ladies Home Journal.  I loved the recipes that my mother would never make and pictures of homes that I would never live in.

After browsing through those ,  next I would look at the “black folks mags” like Ebony, Jet, and Essence to catch up on the latest in black hair care, the 100 most influential black people, and to learn what I could do as a woman to please my black man.  Flipping through the pages, I found insightful renderings on why black women should stop nagging their “good black men” and be more supportive. Now if only my mother had a good black man and I had a father,  we would be all set to go.

obama-cartoonSpeaking of go,  I would leave the magazine section to make a check on the parental figure at this point. Like a good mom she had made her way to the breakfast cereals. Good thing I had caught up to her just in time to give my valuable input.

“Boo Berry cereal,” I said pointing at the box with the purple ghost and filled with colored marshmallows and 16 essential fortified vitamins.

Mom give me a cross look. “I told you not to wonder off. Now stay by me, I don’t want to have to go looking for you before I check out.”

“Okay”

Slam, bam phooey. As soon as she picked up a can of Jolly Green Giant veggies, I was back in the zine aisle, readily situated on a milk crate with Cosmopolitan.  My perception of the “Cosmo woman” was someone who was sexy, in control of her life and armed with an IUD or diaphragm.  Loved those pictures of voluptuous breasts I would never grow because I was destined to be an “A” cup.  Loved the article explaining how to be a bitch in the workplace, juxtaposed with a Halston suit clad woman, reading the Wall Street Journal while holding a man’s head between her quivering thighs. I bet she smelled like that Enjolie perfume too.

My final periodical selection was Ms. Magazine.  An aspiring feminist such as myself needed to keep in touch with the current buzz in women’s movement.

And God created Sarah Palin. Women have come so far today, that we are placed side by side with great men sich as Michaelangelo

And God created Sarah Palin. Women have come so far today, that we are placed side by side with great men such as Michelangelo

Pre-teen Afrocity was down with feminism. Raised on grape juice drink wishes and government cheese dreams,  my completed my feminist tutelage under the best liberal black mom on food stamps in the entire world.

I knew my pre-feminist commandments:

1. I am woman, the other gender does not come before me.

2.Thou shalt not grow up and carve yourself into any image of a housewife.

3. Thou shalt not bow down before man.

4. Honor thy mother and grandmother, and personal shopper.

5. Thou shalt not be pro-life.

6. Remember to keep a safety pin in your purse,  in case garments get “holy”

7. Thou shalt not bear arms, even against thy peeping Tom neighbor.

8.  Thou shalt not kill, unless it is with kindness.

9. Thou shalt not commit adultery, unless he does first.

10. Thou shalt not take the name of your political affiliation, the DNC in vain, for the liberals will not hold her guiltless who belongs to the Republican Party.

Condi Rice will make cornbread in vaginal and melanin hell.  How dare she be a Republican and an African American woman?

Condi Rice will make cornbread in vaginal and melanin hell. How dare she be a Republican and an African American woman?

Fast forward to 2009…Afrocity faltered and is going to vaginal hell. Clean up on feminist commandment aisle 10.  Before switching parties, I was a good feminist. Now liberals are throwing holy Kool Aid water on my face. ARGH, it burns.  Who resides here in vaginal hell with Afrocity? Hi, Tammy Bruce, Greta Van Susteren. Geeze is that…Why it is!!! Anita Bryant.  Hello Ann Coulter, love the hair, still blond and shiny in all of this liberal heat and humility. And of course Sarah Palin working mom, GOP Governor of Alaska,pro-life yep you deserve to be here- nothing about you speaks to the advancement of women’s rights. What’s up  Bristol…Piper are you down here too? What was that? You hate J. Crew clothing for girls. For shame.

Trying to make sense of feminism today is like watching the launch of a space shuttle that blows up in mid-air. Unfortunately, I watched that in the 80’s with the space shuttle Challenger and I am watching it again with the feminist movement of present.

Sarah Palin as you know could never be feminist, and  according to Newsweek writer Eleanor Clift,  Palin has also “let women down”.

Newsweek

“Palin’s Long Run”

As a runner, Sarah Palin has shown she has endurance. What will she do with that?

By Eleanor Cliff

Jul 17, 2009

I didn’t feel compelled to weigh in on Sarah Palin, at least not in print, until I saw her featured in Runner’s World, the holy grail for anybody who’s laced up a pair of running shoes. I don’t know how I missed that piece of her biography, but I learned that she’s been running for 35 years, since she was a child and her parents caught the running craze in the mid-’70s.

That’s when I caught it too, and suddenly I felt simpatico with Palin, an odd feeling since her political inclinations are so different from mine. She grew up doing family run runs, her parents were marathoners, and her dad ran Boston a couple times, another holy grail. “I feel so crappy if I go more than a few days without running,” she says. Now that’s my kind of woman.

Running is what they call a positive addiction. I once had a stress fracture in my foot, which I ignored as best I could lest it interfere with my run. I didn’t come to my senses until my husband asked how long it would take me to hop four miles. Palin faults the McCain staff for failing to carve out time for her to run during the campaign. She’d issue an ultimatum that she needed to run, and too often it never happened. Just think what a different campaign we might have seen if Palin had been given the time to generate those exercise-induced endorphins and maybe even order her thoughts. She might have saved herself from becoming a laughingstock with that disastrous interview with Katie Couric.

Palin MapWow, before the article’s author Ms. Clift  picked up Runner’s World, magazine she never felt compelled to write about Palin of course until now. That’s a stretch (excuse pun). It is so odd that she felt “simpatico” with Palin because you know as a conservative dragon lady, Sarah Palin does not do normal people stuff like eating wasabi peas, taking a daily shit, or running.

The rest of the article can serve as starting points for a discussion on what is wrong with journalism today.

I have sympathy with Palin as a woman and a mother. She wanted her life back. I get that. But I don’t think that walking away from the governor’s office is compatible with attaining the presidency, and her excuse, that she was sparing the state of Alaska the expense of a lame-duck governorship, was laughable. The detail that jumped out at me from a front-page piece in The New York Times was how Palin’s hair was thinning at such an alarming rate due to stress that her beautician staged an intervention. The governor was clearly having trouble coping and instead of backing away and deflecting the criticism, she engaged with every attack, however petty.

Much of the criticism leveled against Palin is justified. She has the makings of a dangerous political figure, a populist in the tradition of Pat Buchanan, whipping up resentment among “real Americans,” the term she used in the campaign and which applies mostly to white, rural pockets of the country. Now that Buchanan has mellowed into the role of television pundit, we forget that he prosecuted the culture wars of the 1990s with his opposition to affirmative action, immigration, gay rights, and abortion, and that he won the New Hampshire primary in 1996, vowing, “The peasants are coming with pitchforks.”

Buchanan is an unabashed admirer of Palin’s, and no wonder. She’s as good as he is at fanning the resentment of Americans who feel left out and left behind in a world that’s changing too fast for them.

I countered this with my "Pro- Black People- Anti-Obama- McCain/Palin 2008" bumper sticker

I countered this with my "Pro- Black People- Anti-Obama- McCain/Palin 2008" bumper sticker

Clift’s article succeeds beautifully in clinging to every Sarah Palin stereotype sold in the mainstream media market. Quoting the New York Times as a credible unbiased news source reflects fair and balanced reporting. Finding Pat Buchanan in the Palin family tree is also a nice touch. You said Pat and Sarah are pretty much good as conservative blood related cousins because he supports her, correct? Do you think there is any incest going on?  Resentful Americans who feel left behind like me want to know. Hey Ms. Clift, there actually might be a story in that for you.  Also you are so right, the criticism of Sarah Palin is so justified. Let’s embrace those who were brave enough to wear the “Sarah Palin is a CUNT” tee shirts. The criticism was justifiable.

Finally, as was the case with most liberal journalists, Clift gives a compelling reason as to explain why Sarah Palin is a disappointment to all womankind:

…Nixon was easy to hate in a pure, unadulterated way. The emotions Palin arouses in the electorate are far more complicated. Women were drawn to her initially, but she let them down. Her positions were too far to the right and her knowledge too provincial. She wasn’t ready to be president. Those attitudes have hardened with time. In the latest CBS poll, only 33 percent of Republicans say she’d make an effective president; that number was 71 percent last fall. Still, I can’t think of another vice presidential candidate on a failed ticket who remained newsworthy a year later. Nobody cared what Dan Quayle had to say after the Bush-Quayle ticket lost in ’92, and he’s the closest analog to Palin, chosen for the youth and good looks he could bring to a charisma-challenged elder statesman.

On behalf of conservative women everywhere let me grab a bucket and puke.

The CBS poll is most likely biased, most conservatives do not identify as Republicans. I have seen other polls that give Sarah Palin advantages over Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich, at as much as 75%.  The claim that “women were drawn to Palin initially”  is a strange one in light of Clift’s confession that she never felt compelled to give Palin as single keystroke until she read the Runner’s World piece.   I am never initially drawn to anything that I don’t stay permanently drawn to.  I was never initially drawn to Michelle Obama or her husband.  I was never initially drawn to Nancy Pelosi. I was never initially drawn to Donna Brazille, even when Bill Clinton was president.  I will always remain drawn to Hillary Clinton despite some reservations about her role in the Obama administration.  You can denounce Sarah Palin as a provincial conservative, for her pro-life beliefs. Yes liberal feminists, I know that Sarah Palin should endure a thousand menstrual cramps for denouncing gay marriage. She will never be a feminist.

In the aftermath of the 2008 election where busloads of young women stumped for Barack Obama while rear ending Sarah Palin, I get there are no feminists on the  right, but look at what you are doing and saying to our young women? Are there really any feminists left?

Autographed Letter Signed,

AFROCITY

Feminism

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20 Responses to “Feminism Today: Crouching Paper Tiger, Hidden Dragon Lady”

  1. bob Says:

    Heh, I have a story to tell. I’m an older white farmer out here in Idaho, half Swede, bunch of other stuff.

    For years I’d go into the bar, and have an afternoon drink with Nick, our bartender, who had a Ph.D.

    He told me a couple times, Bobbie, Larry Craig is gay as a goose.

    I’d say, he can’t be.

    Bobbie, Larry Craig is gay as a goose.

    It didn’t matter much to me, cause he was for the 2nd Amendment.

    But old Nick the Bartender was right, Larry Craig was gay as a goose.

    How he knew this, I don’t know.

    But it didn’t surprise me, when he got arrested, looking for love and friendship in some airport restroom, tapping his toes, wide stanced.

  2. bob Says:

    Well, you best get to know your congressman, or not!

    He was a man that lived a double life, and got his jollies and love and affection in a rest room, tapping his foot, anonymously.

    We have basically kicked him out of the Republican Party here.

    Not for being gay as a goose, but for lying about it all those years.

  3. swanspirit Says:

    Afrocity … there are many things that matter to women ; whether they come under the category of feminism is anyones call these days .Anything that comes under the heading of equal rights for women ….and not all of those issues are centered around reproductive rights, even tho I refuse to say those rights are unimportant because they are of fundamental importance to all women .
    But given the global lack of equality that women suffer in this world , I really do not believe we can limit feminism at this time by restricting it with the boundaries of a definition of reproductive rights in this country . I think we have to take the long view , and bring all of our sisters along , even the ones who do not realise how restrictive some of their own beliefs are . I don’t think we help by leaving them out .
    There were women who once thought that a womans place was in the home , who have come very far from that view because they were swept along with the tide of women who knew better, but we did not leave them out , or even castigate them for their views … we simply showed them how to move into the future as free women .
    This is of course my own personal view, and as always take what you like and leave the rest 😉

    • meeee2 Says:

      Any woman who emphatically believes she would never have an abortion, no matter what the circumstance, should really be disinterested in the subject of abortion. It doesn’t apply to them. The subject belongs to those who think they actually may need access to safe choices. Why that is a government controlled topic is beyond me.

      One problem is, birth control for women is not covered under many medical plans and is at the expense of the woman who wants to prevent unwanted pregnancy. Those who can’t afford the high cost of control also can’t afford to have an unplanned child. The man walks away from unwanted children and puts the woman through the trauma of having to prove it is his.

      I will always be flabergasted by the men who take a hardline stand against abortion. If they have ever had unprotected sex with a woman, they don’t fully understand where life begins and they have no credibility.

      • meeee2 Says:

        Quick clarification. Women who would never consider abortion need to support rather than judge their sisters. It’s about their privacy and rights to make decisions about their own lives, too.

      • Jessica In PA Says:

        I would never support abortion. I am not judging anyone. You sound like you’re judging pro life women. Tiller was a man, bet you he never had an abortion. Fine for you that he is a man so long as he killed a 8 month fetus.

        I will always uncover the lies spewed by the pro-abortion group. They are not pro-choice but pro-abortion.

  4. live4freedom Says:

    Nice blog. As a former east coast lib myself (we’re allowed to be ignorant in our youth). it’s good to see that like me, you woke up out of the liberal sleepwalk.

    You need to take the next step and see Hillary Clinton for what she is: an evil, self-aggrandizing, phony opportunist who only cares for her need for power.

  5. madamab Says:

    Dear Jessica in PA:

    How can you be pro-life if you support the murder of Dr. Tiller?

    [cricket cricket cricket]

    Afrocity, OT: Did you see this piece about the PUMAs and Hillary on American Thinker? WOW!

    Link

  6. Jessica In PA Says:

    Dear Madamab,

    Where did I say that I supported Dr. Tiller’s murder?

    [moonbat moonbat moonbat]

    Liberals feel more sorrow over the death of one murdered abortionist than they do about the millions of babies murdered as they slumber in the womb.

  7. madamab Says:

    Jessica,

    You certainly implied that you support his murder. And I notice you’re still not denying it.

    Why is that?

    If you are “pro-life” you should not support any killing at all. PERIOD.

    I don’t get people like you. You are so cruel to your sisters who are going through difficult decisions as to whether or not they should bear their children. Let she who is without sin throw the first stone, no?

    Are you without sin, Jessica? Somehow I doubt it. But you’re really quick with nasty labels like “moonbat” and “pro-abortion,” aren’t you?

    There are lots of nasty things I could call you too, Jessica. But I will be civil out of respect to Afrocity, who rocks.

    • Jessica In PA Says:

      Liberal now says that I support the murder of Tiller. What else is new. Liberal says I hate women who have abortions. Accusations like these explain the reason why liberalism fails in our country. Everything is black or white. Because I am pro life I have to support the murder of Tiller and of course I am against the usage of contraceptives. You have me all figured out.

      I am not denying that I support the murder of Tiller because I never said I supported it to begin with. Here is the lunacy in the pro-abortion movement. It is not pro choice due to pro life being a choice. You are for abortion not choice. Are you without children? Is getting pregnant the worse thing that could happen to you?

      When has planned parenthood talked a woman into NOT terminating a pregnancy? Did you know that planned parenthood fails to report statutory rapes because they are too busy getting abortions for teenage patients?

      Pro choice is a lie.

    • Jessica In PA Says:

      I also think you are a troll. Unless you are gullible enough to believe that you can come to a republican blog and influence we redneck conservative chicks.

      Poor PUMA needs an identity.

      • afrocity Says:

        Jessica and Madamab you are both beautiful and intelligent women…who will never agree on this issue. That is the beauty of womanhood, great female minds will never think alike on everything.

        I do agree with Jessica that she did not say she supported the murder of Dr. Tiller and I also never heard Madamab mention that she was pro-abortion.

        Swanspirit above said it best, our struggles as women are not all about reproductive rights. If that were the case, as a black woman I would never vote for a white political candidate who was running against an African American Democrat. Yes race is a large component of being black but there are also economical and educational issues that go along with it. It is in those areas where the conservative in me awakens and rises against the liberal.

        How can you be for women’s rights and be pro-life?
        How can you be for African Americans and equality and be against affirmative action, be a Republican, not vote for Barack Obama? It never ends.

  8. manbearpig68 Says:

    I didn’t want to jump in on this but I really think a lot of feminists are lost and that’s why the fight is lost.. Bickering about abortion when the choice is not going anywhere is ridiculous. They should concentrate on how women should be treated equally and fight against sexism in the media, workplace, and everyplace else. When Palin or Hillary got ripped on and sexism reared it’s head, all women should have jumped all over the attacks even if they don’t agree with the political views. Instead, they would let political views come first and fall right in with the men that are doing the damage. Even comments for this article turned into a pro-life, pro-choice fight. one last comment, I didn’t see Jessica in PA say anything about support for the murder of Tiller.

    • i agree with you, but a lot of women look at the abortion issue as a litmus test for larger questions of feminism. I believe that is unhelpful, but for some it is such a critical issue that it cannot be overlooked. As long as abortion is cast as a feminist issue (rather than a question of medical ethics, or competing justice claims, or some other metric) it will always be divisive.

      • afrocity Says:

        Do you feel that men should have a say in the pro-choice/pro-life debate?

      • @afrocity – that’s a hard question, especially because of the history of paternalism and male domination. I see easily why women believe men should be excluded from the conversation.

        On the other hand, it is an issue that doesn’t just affect women. Women cannot and do not conceive children by themselves and when brought to term, men are expected (even obliged) under the law to provide for them. Then of course there is the public policy side of things. Is it right to systematically exclude someone’s voice because of gender because it’s a “woman’s issue?” Well, we’ve been down that road, except it was men excluding women from things thought to be men’s responsibility.

        Is it right for a woman to bring a child to term that the father doesn’t want and then force that man to pay support for the child for 18 years? No, but it happens, yet no man can force a woman to carry a child to term that he wants but that she doesn’t even if he intends to take care of the child for the rest of its’ life.

        Like I said, its a hard question, and men have a lot to be culpable for historically when it comes to this and other issues. But if “reproductive rights issues ” only belong to women, then that isn’t right either. So yeah, I guess I think men ought to have a say, because they have a stake in it. Yet, I don’t know how that should all be worked out.

  9. manbearpig68 Says:

    NO!! Like Dennis Miller said if men had to get an abortion, it would have legal ages ago…The only say a man has in it is between him and his girlfriend or wife or whatever.


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