Where my girls at?

There’s this lady that I have been arguing pretty strenuously with on a listserve I belong to about Sen. Barack Obama’s winning the Democratic nomination over Sen. Hillary Clinton.
I can’t count the number of times that she said Obama’s win was a coup (which I disuputed by saying that he wasn’t Jean-Bertrand Aristide and this wasn’t Haiti) or the number of times that she called him a sexist because he had played by the rules and defeated her girl.
After she told me how much I owed feminism for my career as a journalist, I said that I didn’t actually owe feminism shit because their brand of feminism (read: old-school white feminism) had failed consistently to address the issues of women of color like me.
But i’m a person who believes that everyone deserves a second chance, so i’m about to give those old school feminists, many of whom would beat my ass if they could, a shot at redemption.

You may recognize this piece of tape as Fox News’s latest attempt to put a target on the back of Sen. Obama’s wife Michelle just in time for the November elections.
While I had no problem with the story itself, which was a story about an anti-Obama documentary that someone is about to put out, I did have a problem with the chyron.
Baby mama?
BABY MAMA?
What’s up with that shit? Who approved that, and why aren’t they out looking for another job?
Well, I’m guessing that the reason this person is still employed is the fact that no one is speaking out about it. Squeaky wheel gets the grease. If the wheels aren’t squeeking, the gas can stays inside.
The first thing that hit me after seeing this, especially in light of Fox News’s whole “Dap as Terrorist Fist Bump” thing, is that Fox needs to be schooled a little on African American Urban Vernacular.
You see, in order for Michelle and Barack Obama to be “baby mama” and “baby daddy” respectively, they would have to be unmarried. In fact, people in that situation are generally no longer in a relationship with each other anymore. Since the Obamas are not only a married couple, but a happily married one from all appearances, this doesn’t apply to them.
The second thing that hit me was the sound of my “sexism buzzer” going off. I have yet to see anyone labeled as a “baby daddy” on Fox News or anywhere else for that matter.
So, I thought, where my girls at?
Whenever Sen. Clinton found herself beset by the forces of sexism, I’d get some interesting email in my email box. The National Association for Women would send me release after release to proclaim their frustration at the latest sexist evil perpetrated against her, and for good reason. Sexism is bad and should be squelched whenever possible.
Now in case you haven’t noticed ladies, this is a blatant case of sexism. Add this to the other attacks that Fox News has launched on Michelle Obama since her husband started inching closer to the Red Button, and the boycott machine should be warmed up and ready to go.
But instead, I’ve noticed what can only be described as a deafening silence.
Because of this, I can only come to one conclusion: if a white woman gets attacked, you’re all on it. But if a woman of color finds herself being smacked around by sexism, she’s on her own.
So much for sisterhood, huh?
Thus the need for a chance for you all to redeem yourself. I want to see the NOW propaganda machine in all of it’s glory. I want to see boycotts mounted, press released issued, statements made. Get on it!
Otherwise, you’ve just proven my point and have proven to me that you are, in the words of my homey Keith Olbermann, “The Worst Persons in the World.”

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9 comments

  1. Sometimes when I am disappointed, I have to analyze my own disappointment. Am I disappointed becasue my expectations weren’t met? usually. So, what if my expectations weren’t realistic? Then what? I need to change my expectations.I think this is one of those cases when expectations aren’t in line with reality. NOW isn’t, and never was, what it purports to be. It is, and always was, an organization that revered the racist Margaret Sanger, sought to encourage women to be as downright sexually immoral as men, and challenged the philosophy or Jesus Christ himself!Imagine telling women they could have it all: wife, mother, career, family, etc. and then watch women run out of the home toward all of these dreams, only to find that they had to come home after a long days work and STILL do all the cooking, cleaning, laundry, homework, caretaking of the family and home that SOMEBODY had to do.Imagine how those women reacted toward their men? Angrily. Disappointed. And divorce rates skyrocketed. Are there other reasons why divorce went up? Yes. But can we add this reason to them? Yes.NOW has a political agenda. It always has. And it has left numerous women out in the cold. When Paula Jones sought to recover her sullied reputation by a philandering Arkansas Governor by the name of Bill Clinton, it took her many years to finally win her case and get Clinton disbarred, which he was.But in the end, she became a household name for a not-very-nice woman. She was called every name except a child of God. And NOW led the charge. And whatever happened to Linda Tripp, whose life was tossed away along with Monica Lewinsky, who at least got something out of the deal.Where was NOW then?NOW is a sly organization of women who pretend to be one thing, yet are another altogether.So when one expects NOW to come running for an obvious slight against women, don’t. NOW will only come running when it is in its political interests to do so.One might also say the same thing about a number of social orgs in this country.So if I don’t expect an organization to do what I think it should do, then I’m not disappointed. It’s only when I expect folks to act according to the fantasy they planted in my head that I find myself up in arms.

  2. well, I don’t agree that you need to blame feminists for the divorce rates and all that crap, I do agree that most mainstream feminist organizations exist to serve upwardly-mobile white women. But I will point you to a few white feminist bloggers who did freak out about the baby mama comment, in defense of…a few of them. < HREF="http://www.feministe.us/blog/" REL="nofollow">Feministe<>, I would post more, but I make it a point to read feminist bloggers of color more than I do white feminists.

  3. Response to ‘Mike’:You have to be hard up for news, ideas, etc., to put Michelle Obama in the same commentary with Paula Jones & Linda Tripp. You are comparing a reputable, happily married woman to a couple of whores who would & did sell out their own reputation for a little piece of Bill Clinton.I am not making excuses for the actions of Clinton. His philandering ways were despicable but it was none of our business. If it had not been him, it would have been some other prominent man. Those trollops, Tripp, Jones (& don’t forget Flowers), are still trying to make money off their own whoring activities. Men like Mike will be the first in line to read their crap & giggle, never mind how their stories have been edited & glamorized over the years. They (men) are jealous of President Clinton & the fact that so many women find him attractive & sexy. Men like Mike give the Tripps, Joneses & Flowers a sense of legitimacy by comparing them to an upstanding, professional woman like Michelle Obama. I say that these men are full of crap.These women are the kinds who give all working women a bad name & make it harder for them to get ahead in the work place. As for Michelle Obama, I started out disliking her intensely. It took a while to realize that she irritated the hell out of me because I find her saying & doing things I would say in the same situation with the exception that I would tell a few of these fools to go ffffff themselves! Maybe she does in private. I think it would be delightful to have a first lady who tells some of the fools she will have to endure to take a flying leap. I know it won’t happen because the experts are already training her how to be first lady.The hell with that. The best thing that could happen to this country is for her to be herself and when she is pissed off at the stupidity that will surely come her way to let it all hang out.I think she should also make Barack to get his ass out of bed and to make it up when they get to the White House too! Come to think of it……..she might just make a great president when Barack is finished his 8 yrs!! Oh how those good old white boys would scream! Hang in there Denise. I would still support you for president!

  4. First, Fox is not going to fire someone for toeing the company line. Remember, they hired this person was before he/she wrote the chyron.And why look to NOW to object to a baby mama reference? You’d have to go deep in the membership roster to find someone who actually suffered that indignation. If you can’t relate, you can’t object.And to the brother who said angry caused the divorce rate to increase, I say brother please.The divorce rate went up not because NOW sold some stale bill of goods but because the women’s movement expanded opportunities for women to go and stay in college and enter the work force at a rate not seen since WWII.Most of our foremothers stayed in ridiculous marriages because they didn’t have economic independence. After the 1960s, women realized not only do men not have to be the major breadwinner but that there are men out there strong to support their wives’ goals of having a career outside the home. Wow. What a concept.But back to the baby mama drama, it was addressed although I didn’t see a direct apology issued and didn’t expect one because of the source. The opposition will continue to examine Michelle’s tampons in search of something to denigrate her for, so a weak attempt at “ghetto humor” and worse should be expected during this “silly season.”

  5. First of all, Mike, I didn’t realize that NOW was the reason for high divorce rates. I thought that it was an inability to get along that caused divorce. Thanks for schooling me.And Shauna, thanks for schooling him. I agree with you that there probably isn’t an apology in the offing because it’s Fox News and it’s the party line. Unfortunately, we have more of this to look forward to in the next few months.Thanks Sarah for sending the Feministe link to me. It’s yet another website that I’m going to have to check out.But I would expect nothing less from you. You constantly educate me and I appreciate it.As for you Maggie, I want to be you when I grow up.

  6. Wow. I can feel the heat in here. Lots of anger. Sorry that I expressed an opinion. It appears that the art of debate has been lost here.And so I will take my leave of you all. But in departing, may I say that I offered my premise as a hypothetical one(imagine that). And then quickly (but apparently not quick enough) added that there are other reasons why the divorce rate went up, but could we also imagine that black women who bought the feminist line exhibited an anger and hostility for the plight they found themselves in as part of it?If the answer is unequivocally no, then please state that. All of the rest of the emotional hyperbole only underscores my point about anger and degrades any opposing views.Additionally, the lady who suggested that Paula Jones and Linda Tripp were trollops has no real knowledge of that story. I understand that, though. The media did an incredibly poor job of accurate and fair reporting. But to set the record straight. Jones was accosted by then-Governor Clinton in a hotel where she was requested by a state trooper to leave her desk and accompany him to see the governor. She ran from the room when Clinton pulled his penis and requested her to perform a sexual favor, told her friend, and was visibly shaken by the attempt made by the soon-to-be pop culture president. Paula tried to let it go and forget the whole thing happened.But then her name appeared in a national political magazine as one of Clinton’s whores. And that began Paula Jones’ quest to CLEAR HER NAME. Meanwhile, women across the nation skewered the poor woman without cause. It was incredibly shameful. Please let’s not relive such baseless accusations against the poor woman. She suffered enough with an entire nation calling her ugly and worse.I would defend any of you as well, if you were subjected to the lies and propaganda to which Jones was. And Tripp got caught in the crossfire as well. Asked to lie and to aid in a cover-up of an illicit affair, she refused. Her livelihood and family were threatened. Still she stood up for what was right. How can anyone (especially any Christian) not honor such integrity?I find it incredible that highly accomplished, smart women across the nation found themselves executing innocent women who were victimized by a powerful man who abused his authority, his wife, his child, the women with whom he engaged, the powers he assumed and the people who supported him.To this day, it is incredible that I still find remnants and pockets of women who revere such a scoundrel. And what’s worse, is the villifying of innocent women who did nothing more than stand up for themselves against the massive onslaught of their sisters. Just incredible.Take care, ladies. And please accept my comments in peace.

  7. If you choose to leave, Mike, that’s your choice.However, I don’t believe in stifling debate. If you read my very first post here on the Mad (political) Scientist, you’ll see that I’m absolutely nuts about the First Amendment and what it stands for. Free speech is sacrosanct here.Feel free to be as loud, and as wrong (or right) as you want to be here.

  8. There seems to be a bit of revisionism in the reference to Paula Jones here. Bill Clinton’s law license was suspended for five years in exchange for avoiding perjury charges in the Lewinsky case, not Ms. Jones. He is eligible to apply for reinstatement of his license but apparently now has better things to do.And for the record, I haven’t been in Bill’s camp since he jettisoned Lani Guinier and Joycelyn Elders, let alone the destruction of the poor through the “end of welfare as we know it.”Now to the bitter thing, while I’m not sure how a debate turned into an indictment of women as angry, it is in no way true that black women had to get permission from the feminist movement to wake up to the fact that they could take care of themselves (and potential children) without depending on a man who would mistreat them and then blame them for their discontent. I know lots of sisters who are feminists and happy in their marriages, more due to the maturity and partnership of their husbands. NOW was never about women ditching their husbands for no good reason.Full disclosure: I was married for 30 years before leaving my now ex-husband. I was a feminist all 30 of those years. We grew apart and when I could support myself (because I don’t believe in spousal or child support), I booked because I had done everything I could to repair my marriage and I wasn’t trying to take the verbal abuse and infidelity for the rest of my life.All that to say that until you’ve been a woman or even asked a woman, you don’t know our stories so you can’t possibly lump us in the same bag.I’m not bitter, angry, frustrated or anything negative because that experience made me a better person. I hope Hillary, Monica and Linda’s experiences made them better women as well.

  9. Yo DC,In response to your query of “Where your Girls At?”—Hey, we are here in the blogashere, just like yourself, and giving fever to the mainstream media that makes it a point to disengage from African-Americans, Black folk and anyone who doesn’t look or act like the Caucasian standard. It was just last year that Internet protests lead by Austin-based attorney Gina McCauley and her blog, “What About Our Daughters?” spurred at least two major advertisers to pull out of the BET program and Web site promotions for “Hot Ghetto Mess.” For my series of stories on that topic, visit http://www.buzzle.com/authors.asp?author=9870I’ve said in several public appearances that Black women are the original feminists and all other attempts are a distortion of the sprit of that ideology. In response to that comment I’ve seen white women turned red and start babbling about the ERA and the benefits of NOW, while Black women were finally relieved to have a reason to engage with the theory. As always, Sistas don’t live in theory; we live in fact, and the simple design of equality and self- determination (both major portions of the feminists theory) are standards by which Black women thrive. Additionally, for all the hype that surrounds Gloria Steinem (former Playboy Bunny, no less) the same level of disregard has been afforded to bell hooks, whom I regard as one of the premier feminists of our lifetime. The Obama situation is on blast online. The aforementioned WAOD (whataboutourdaughters.blogspot.com/) is one destination website that links to Michelleobama.com. Another site of interest is Jack and Jill Politics (http://www.jackandjillpolitics.com/) which, as the site explains, is not affiliated with Jack and Jill of America, Jack and Jill Magazine, “Jack and Jill Went Up the Hill to Fetch a Pail of Water,” but has no problem putting a foot up the arse of The Man (or Woman, for that matter.) The comments often outrank the commentary. Nonetheless, we have got to keep the gates open for Pro & Con-versation (please give credit to my mentor—and equal opportunity butt stomper—Reggie Bryant for that charmer). So Mike, don’t be disenchanted when the women come strong. Just don’t be half-stepping. Oh, and by the way, f*ck AP rules and please use a capital “B” for Black. Peace,Bobbibybobbibooker.wordpress.com

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