Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The Era of Anti-Hillaryism

I gotta say something in Hilary's defense, actually in all Women's defense, I'm just sick and tired of the blind Hillary-hating thing that has been going on with no obvious reason...

When some woman say about equality for women, she's immediately called a "feminist", which is a word with a negative detonation today, but if you promote equality for black people, then you are none other than Martin Luther King. When someone mentions the word "black candidate", he/she is immediately called a "racist", but what about the hatred for women, how many people even know the word "misogynist"? For those who think I'm playing a word game, I just want to say language matters, ideological bias could definitely be reflected in the language used of people's choice, you could consult on Wittgenstein for that matter.

One pundit, Stanley Fish, wrote in his blog the following:

In the January issue of GQ, Jason Horowitz described the world of Hillary haters, many of whom he has interviewed. Horowitz finds that the hostile characterizations of Clinton do not add up to a coherent account of her hatefulness. She is vilified for being a feminist and for not being one, for being an extreme leftist and for being a “warmongering hawk,” for being godless and for being “frighteningly fundamentalist,” for being the victim of her husband’s peccadilloes and for enabling them. “She is,” Horowitz concludes, “an empty vessel into which [her detractors] can pour everything they detest.”
Everyone blames her for what her husband does or for what he doesn’t do. (This is what the compound “Billary” is all about.) If she answers questions aggressively, she is shrill. If she moderates her tone, she’s just play-acting. If she cries, she’s faking. If she doesn’t, she’s too masculine. If she dresses conservatively, she’s dowdy. If she doesn’t, she’s inappropriately provocative.

But if you are seriously looking for reasons behind this irrational or even desperate need for some liberals to find Hillary a target, here's some thought:

In Nicholas D. Kristof's recent New York Times article, he analyzed this unfair judgment towards women leaders:
In one common experiment, the “Goldberg paradigm,” people are asked to evaluate a particular article or speech, supposedly by a man. Others are asked to evaluate the identical presentation, but from a woman. Typically, in countries all over the world, the very same words are rated higher coming from a man.

In particular, one lesson from this research is that promoting their own successes is a helpful strategy for ambitious men. But experiments have demonstrated that when women highlight their accomplishments, that’s a turn-off. And women seem even more offended by self-promoting females than men are.

This creates a huge challenge for ambitious women in politics or business: If they’re self-effacing, people find them unimpressive, but if they talk up their accomplishments, they come across as pushy braggarts.

The broader conundrum is that for women, but not for men, there is a tradeoff in qualities associated with top leadership. A woman can be perceived as competent or as likable, but not both.
I challenge anyone who has attacked Hillary this: list down every policy plan Hillary and Obama has laid out for the future and let's see. I'm not talking about the big ideals: change, democracy or whatever beautiful words that would be an altruism but less than empty without firm and steady policy support. Let's see who has a real knowledge about how to run this country, who has the ability and the insight to take America to his/her promised land.

I like it that Kristof ended his op-ed with this: "Women have often quipped that they have to be twice as good as men to get anywhere — but that, fortunately, is not difficult. In fact, it appears that it may be difficult after all. Modern democracies may empower deep prejudices and thus constrain female leaders in ways that ancient monarchies did not."

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