Good to see these points coming out, and as an added benefit, we get to watch Chris Matthews squirm in embarrassment as he grows up. (The entire way he has been covering this campaign is racist and sexist. The primary statistic is who is or isn’t carrying each group, and it has reached levels bordering on insanity, because it’s so obvious and yet he persists.)
The women’s movement is about free choice, self-determination and challenging a status quo that fails a lot of Americans, not just women. And it is not about going along. It’s about transcending, about having the freedom to follow one’s heart, about creating and pursuing new opportunities, and about the American dream being for all Americans.
Chris’ gotcha-type question to me and the semi-criticism implicit in it — that as a woman I have some biological obligation to unreservedly support whatever woman is running — are exactly the sentiments I faced when I first started working for a woman’s right to choose. If women who vote for men are traitors, then are men who vote for women also traitors? What about African-Americans who vote for whites? Or whites who vote for African-Americans?
Laying this guilt trip, this hypocrisy, on women — saying that those women who don’t vote for other women are turncoats — is tantamount to saying that women who exercise independent thought haven’t the right to do that either. Could there be a more anti-feminist contention?
That’s feminist Kate Michelman, writing in Salon.com. (02/08/2008, “What I really wanted to say to Chris Matthews”)
I bring the point to the I-nation because Chris Matthews’ perspective (and NBC’s as a whole, it seems) is the one where sexism & racism are institutionalized, and continues unchanging. The “Imus perspective” which surfaced awkwardly in the NHH remark but reflected much of the show’s humor was one where racism and sexism are so over, they are kind of a joke. Just in fact like Sarah Silverman’s world, the only difference being Imus is an old white man. The truth is, all races and genders were welcome to Imus’ morning bashes, and to watch an old white guy occasionally make fun of this characteristic of some old white guys, was funny.
Anyway, I’m with the Clintons on this one: The problem is NBC. Essential problem is that MSNBC is not really a news channel, but it thinks it is.
Of course if your regular television viewer thinks this viewpoint is coming out of a news channel, it might throw off the dude’s perspective of the subtly crafted and perfectly positioned satire for which the previous incarnation of IITM (of which, of course and unfortunately, as has been stated many times but must again since people are sooooo touchy, the April remark was a poorly crafted & awkwardly positioned example of such) was known.
Then there was this little sugarplum from Matthews:
And since I used to like Chris Matthews, here’s one of him literally slobbering: