As someone who has a long history of marching for causes, I am pretty geeked about having a black man and a white woman running as candidates for president. I also am really annoyed with the huge storm of total BS that has been served up about this historic occurrence.
Exhibit A: New York NOW’s off the hook accusation of Ted Kennedy as betraying Hillary Clinton–and by extension, all women–by throwing his support to Obama.
Well, gosh, I guess I’m a traitor too for not voting the vagina party line, and looking at the candidates’ actual platforms. To take this to the extreme, would the NOW group support Ann Coulter as a candidate just because she has a uterus? I hope not.
Exhibit B: John Edwards is leaving the race–and I hear a politico bloviating on the radio about “who will represent the white men that are now disenfranchised? There is no one like them in the race!”
Um, I guess they’ll be represented by the same people who have been elected to represent women and African Americans for the last….oh wait, not 200 years, because we haven’t been allowed to vote that long. Suck it, white dudes.
Both of these are just two different sides of a silly premise–that you should vote your race or gender. CHOOSE ONE.
So many great things have been written about this false dichotomy, that I wanted to link to some of them:
And from Pitting Race against Gender:
“nowhere in the race vs. gender frenzy that has swept the nation has anyone challenged the very validity of the question. How can one compare racism to sexism – and if one tries, where do those of us who are disadvantaged both by our race and by our gender fit in?
In truth, the juxtaposition is disingenuous, divisive, overly simplistic, and ultimately harmful, because it redirects our attention away from efforts to break the White male patriarchy that excludes all the Others, but towards in-fighting where we all compete to see both who’s more oppressed, and who will make it out of that “Oppression Box” first.”
As an Old School (ok, just old) feminist, I am very saddened and disappointed by the way some feminists have bought into this false dichotomy, and are helping to perpetuate it in the media.
I will not be voting my with my ovaries, I’m voting with my heart and head. And I want to see a Brother in the White House.