Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Gloria Steinem's NY Times Article: Obama could never be a woman

Gloria Steinem is pretty cool. Sure, she may have gotten more face time than Kate Millet (right, with Steinem) because she was prettier and not a lesbian, but that doesn't mean she wasn't a powerful voice in the women's movement.

Her voice is out there still, and this New York Times article proves it.

THE woman in question became a lawyer after some years as a community organizer, married a corporate lawyer and is the mother of two little girls, ages 9 and 6. Herself the daughter of a white American mother and a black African father — in this race-conscious country, she is considered black — she served as a state legislator for eight years, and became an inspirational voice for national unity.

Be honest: Do you think this is the biography of someone who could be elected to the United States Senate? After less than one term there, do you believe she could be a viable candidate to head the most powerful nation on earth?

The answer is no. Even aside from the whole race issue, Obama's optimism, his emotional nature, none of that would fly for a female presidential candidate. She goes on with a comparison between Obama and Clinton:
But what worries me is that he is seen as unifying by his race while she is seen as divisive by her sex.

What worries me is that she is accused of “playing the gender card” when citing the old boys’ club, while he is seen as unifying by citing civil rights confrontations...

What worries me is that reporters ignore Mr. Obama’s dependence on the old — for instance, the frequent campaign comparisons to John F. Kennedy — while not challenging the slander that her progressive policies are part of the Washington status quo.

I believe what she's saying is true, but I take issue with her accusations against young women:
What worries me is that some women, perhaps especially younger ones, hope to deny or escape the sexual caste system; thus Iowa women over 50 and 60, who disproportionately supported Senator Clinton, proved once again that women are the one group that grows more radical with age.

This country can no longer afford to choose our leaders from a talent pool limited by sex, race, money, powerful fathers and paper degrees. It’s time to take equal pride in breaking all the barriers. We have to be able to say: “I’m supporting her because she’ll be a great president and because she’s a woman.”

Yes, if I thought she'd be a great president, I would stand proud. But I don't. I'm not in denial or suffering from ignorance, I just don't think she'd be very good. And I won't vote for her just BECAUSE she's a woman.

1 comment:

Adam Elend said...

She makes an excellent point.

But 70% of Americans oppose the war and she supports it. Obama doesn't.

Young or old, some people put a higher priority on that.