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A Political Venture

September 7, 2008

Things have been hectic, and so I haven’t written in quite a while. There’s much to say, but we’ll start with the important things first:

As I may or may not have mentioned before, I am rather apathetic about American politics. That is not to say that I will not be voting in November, but rather to say that I fear my chosen home to be something of a lost cause (not that my homeland is doing much better). I do feel however that this election deserves to be at least acknowledged by anyone and everyone- particularly those who will have a say in its outcome. A woman has now been chosen by McCain and his Republican Party to possibly be the next Vice President of the United States. Does that speak to the evolution of the party, or of the evolution of their marketing strategy?

I’m no feminist, although I know my mother wishes I was (she grew up in the 60s and 70s in New York City and went to Sarah Lawrence, who can blame her?), but that doesn’t mean I don’t have some feminist values, or biases, or whatever you may call them. My mother says I think I’m not a feminist becasue I’ve never had doors closed to me the way they were closed to her, but I’ll find them, and I’ll come around. But I disagree- I’ve been to school in 3 countries; lots of doors have been shut in my face because of sex or religion, she forgets that. She forgets too that I resent the way my single-sex Upper East Side private high school tried to force feminism on me- I complained from day one that they were presenting ideas I believed to be incorrect. But this is not my point; my purpose today was to talk about the article my aunt Susan’s friend Gloria Steinem, famed feminist, wrote for the op-ed section of the LA Times.

I don’t agree with all of her opinions generally, and as I have admitted, I haven’t been following the elections closely. However, she has a formidable opposition opinion about Palin. It is her belief that the Republicans have gone the wrong way about this, and I agree. If one wanted to appeal to female voters, I don’t know that Clinton would be my choice, but Palin most certainly is not. Palin opposes the moral sensibilities of the very women McCain seeks to woo. As Steinem says, “feminism has never been about getting a job for one women. It’s about making a life more fair for women everywhere.” Palin however may just be the anti-feminist, and certainly thinks that her own attainment of the post of Vice Presidential nominee is more than enough to seduce voters while still remaining “true” to her beliefs, and those of the more conservative end of the Republican party. To quote Steinem one more time, “Palin’s value to those patriarchs is clear: She opposes just about every issue women support by a majority or plurality.”

Before reading the piece, I thought the ploy unlikely to work, but Steinem’s convictions are strong, and I hope she’s right in saying it definitely wont.

See the full article here: http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/commentary/la-oe-steinem4-2008sep04,0,7915118.story

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