Category Archives: feminism

Dear Ms. Steinem

I was just marking your essay in the NYTimes OpEd in my Ma.gnolia when I realized I was writing too much for a simple bookmark. I have long appreciated you and your historic contribution to feminism, but I have to disagree with this essay titled “Women Are Never Front-Runners”. I’m sorry, but it’s a crock. The media has been plugging Hillary since whispers of the 2008 election began. I think they would love the idea Bush, Clinton, Bush, Clinton run of presidents. Also, Clinton was polling high among registered voters before the Iowa caucus. So your essay title rings false. Obviously, Clinton (a woman) was viewed as a frontrunner.

The first paragraph that asserts that America wouldn’t vote for a female version of Obama may ring more true. I’d like to think that if a woman like Obama was running that I would be more excited about this race. I might even take time off of work to go help out in New Hampshire. As it stands, I’m disappointed at the prospect of a Hillary Clinton presidency. And not because she’s a woman.

I am a feminist who wrote a fan letter (yes, I admit it) to Ms. Clinton after reading her It Takes a Village. I was so moved by that book; I have only written three fan letters in my life, and one of them was to Hillary. I remember being inspired by her role as a strong woman in the White House.

And yet, and yet. . . I was so excited when Clinton ran and won for the New York Senate seat. But then she went on to vote for war. And has yet to apologize for that.

So let’s not make a big deal about how she can’t win because she’s a woman; I think that is an easy excuse that makes no mention of her voting to go to war, her acceptance of big-money contributions, and her current phony veneer. Where has the real Hillary gone? Like Andrew Sullivan says in this piece, “She’s hiding her true feelings. We know it, she knows we know it, and there is no way out of it.”

So Ms. Steinem, I’m afraid I cannot agree with your assertion that the reason Hillary can’t win is because she is a woman. There is so much more than that going on here.

Sincerely,
Elizabeth

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Filed under Democrats, Election08, feminism, political

Mrs?

Yesterday I walked over to the grocery store during my lunch hour to buy some snacky snacks. I used my “Remarkable” card, so the cashier checked my name on the receipt when I was done. She said, “Have a good afternoon, Mrs. S—-!”

Whaaa? I’ve been called “ma’am” by young men only a couple years younger than myself, or even “Miss” by elder male cashiers, but never “Mrs.” Do I have a married look about me? I wear no rings; it’s a good day if I remember to put on a necklace in the morning.

I have to say, this threw me for a loop.

Extra note: my preferred title for myself and any woman is “Ms.” That way there’s no difference if she’s married, single, or other.

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Filed under feminism, language, personal

“She liked imaginary men best of all”

Saturday, between shopping trips, Leah and I ate lunch at the Gateway Whole Foods. Right by the entrance, they had 2007 calendars for half price. I usually wait to buy my calendars on New Year’s Day, but they had an Anne Taintor calendar and I love her stuff.

I have about three magnets of hers that I bought at the AMOA. I broke my own rule and bought the calendar for less than $7 (only $1.50 more than I spent on each magnet, I think). That made my day, even though I wasn’t aiming to shop for myself.

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Filed under art, feminism, pop culture

Feminism is delicious.

Jane Fonda and Gloria Steinem talk to Stephen Colbert about feminism and their new radio channel for women.

[Eat the Press]

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Filed under baking, feminism, funnies, political, pop culture, television

I miss Ann already

annerichards.jpg

Listening to her 1998 speech here, her death really hit me. It’s so hard to believe that such a smart, sassy, and honest mind is now gone.

I never got to meet her, but she’s been a favorite of mine for a long time. She’s definitely one of my favorite women in Texas history.

My 2004 Women’s History Month post on Ann Richards

Photo from Texas State Library and Archives Commission

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Filed under feminism, political, Progressives

Water

I had heard good things about this film, so I added it to my Netflix queue. I watched it last night and was very impressed. Now I have a new director to watch!

When I read the summary, I thought there was a typo, because surely it wasn’t about an 8-year-old widow. But no! The main character in Water is an 8-year-old girl whose parents send her to an ashram after her much-older husband dies. It has to do with the religious belief that upon marriage, the female becomes half of the male, so when he dies, half of her then dies. The film takes place in the 1930’s, but apparently there are still women living ascetic lives after their husbands die. I’m pretty sure the whole child-bride thing is frowned upon, though.

There was a lot of controversy in India over this film in the ultra-religious communities. I can’t really see why. Faith and religion are integral to this film. Of course, there is a feminist aspect to it also.

The plot doesn’t focus only on the little girl; there are about four other widows that we focus on. None of them are very pleased with their situation, but only one attempts to find her way out. It’s not a happy movie; when things were looking great with 30 minutes left in the film, I just knew something bad would happen. And I’m glad it did. Making this a happy little film would take something away from its message of hope through adversity.

The film is so gorgeously shot. The colors of leaves and blue hallways really stand out among the blankness of the widows’ garb.

There is so much more that goes on in this film that I loved: the acting, the music by Mychael Danna (one of my favorite current composers), the history, the ideas behind the film . . . the list goes on.

The only other film I’d seen by Deepa Mehta was Bollywood/Hollywood, which went beyond camp. I’m glad to have this film to contrast it with.

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Filed under faith, feminism, film, World

Katie Couric

Is it weird that I’m contemplating leaving work early so I can catch the full Couric debut on CBS News tonight? My reasoning:

  • It’s a positive step in women’s history, as she becomes the only sole female anchor currently on network TV to carry a news show by herself. Too bad ABC got rid of let Elizabeth Vargas take maternity time.
  • I want to see how much gravitas she can pull off. I’m so tired of all the “perky” comments. You know no one made such comments about Charlie Gibson when he moved from a morning news show to prime-time.

I may be the only one who couldn’t watch Bob Schieffer. His folksiness didn’t jibe with me.

If Katie is able to pull me in, it will be the first time I make an effort to watch network news since the Iraq war started. Even though I loved Peter Jennings, I just couldn’t watch the jingoistic coverage. It made me so mad, and was such a disappointment. Not that it’s much better nowadays.

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Filed under feminism, pop culture, television