Friday, March 28, 2008

Boys Vs. Girls II: Attack of the Clones

While tracking the progress of the Leslie Bennetts op-ed piece across Technorati (because I'm bored like that), I ran across a real humdinger of a "me too" blog post. I was going to bold the "phrase that pays", but I'll leave that as an exercise to the reader: see if you can tell where this person's train of thought jumped the tracks for me.

Just like evangelicals in the Republican Party, older women in the Democratic Party have been expected to work for the party, vote, and go away. It's not going to be that simple any more.

We want representation, just like evangelicals in the Republican Party do. We're no longer willing to be silent partners who don't expect to have a voice.
Pardon me? Is this analogy implying that evangelical Christians don't expect to have a voice in government? That an influential bloc of evangelicals didn't in fact hijack the party and have been exceedingly influential in shaping the rhetoric and policy decisions of the past three decades? Do you seriously think same sex marriage or abortion would be red alert issues if the GOPs weren't thoroughly cowed by the power of God's People, if they expected the Christian community to sit back and take it? Those protests don't happen by themselves, you know. Fundamentalists aren't just working for the Republican party, they're working the party for their own ends. Sometimes the process works better for them than others, but you deny their influence on politics and American life at your own peril.

I see what this poster was trying to do, but that specific comparison doesn't help your case...if you're talking to liberals, that is, which is the probably the main group that would listen to a "conspiracy of the patriarchy" theory in the first place (full disclosure: I lean to the left, but not that far). This is the reason I usually end up editing my posts several times after they go live; words are all I have here, and they're too valuable to get wrong.

To sum up (and hopefully this will be my final word on this distraction): please let this meme die, because the further away it gets from the source, the dumber it makes us all. Just like the "pubic hair on the Coke can" derailed serious discussion regarding the qualifications and positions of Clarence Thomas, the gender issue is (brace yourself) beside the point when it comes to considering Clinton's qualifications and positions. This is too important an election with too many things at stake (not to mention too many lives on the line overseas and too many livelihoods on the line at home) to turn into a referendum about off-color jokes involving women with power. YOU'RE NOT HELPING.

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