I was about to write a pretty nasty tirade about NOW New York’s whiney jeremiad against Ted Kennedy for his endorsement of … someone other than Hillary Clinton … but as fate would have it, Americablog’s John Aravosis tiraded better:
ever have I read a whinier, more sophomoric press release from a national organization, or in this case, their rather important state affiliate. Apparently, anyone who supports any Democrat other than Hillary is a misogynist. So does that also mean that anyone who supports any Democrat other than Obama is a racist? Truly one of the most ridiculous, knee-jerk, stuck-in-the-1960s, and downright offensive things I’ve ever seen from what I thought was a respectable organization.
In the immortal words of Patrick Swayze as the lead character in “Ghost,” and at the risk of being accused by the NOW ladies of abandoning my responsibility as a woman not to let a man speak for me (unless he’s Bill Clinton,) let me say, Ditto.
So what did the nattering nelly’s of NOW have to say? Here it is:
Senator Kennedy Betrays Women by Not Standing For Hillary Clinton for President
January 28, 2008
Women have just experienced the ultimate betrayal. Senator Kennedy’s endorsement of Hillary Clinton’s opponent in the Democratic presidential primary campaign has really hit women hard. Women have forgiven Kennedy, stuck up for him, stood by him, hushed the fact that he was late in his support of Title IX, the ERA, the Family Leave and Medical Act to name a few. Women have buried their anger that his support for the compromises in No Child Left Behind and the Medicare bogus drug benefit brought us the passage of these flawed bills. We have thanked him for his ardent support of many civil rights bills, BUT women are always waiting in the wings.
And now the greatest betrayal! We are repaid with his abandonment! He’s picked the new guy over us. He’s joined the list of progressive white men who can’t or won’t handle the prospect of a woman president who is Hillary Clinton (they will of course say they support a woman president, just not “this” one). “They” are Howard Dean and Jim Dean (Yup! That’s Howard’s brother) who run DFA (that’s the group and list from the Dean campaign that we women helped start and grow). They are Alternet, Progressive Democrats of America, democrats.com, Kucinich lovers and all the other groups that take women’s money, say they’ll do feminist and women’s rights issues one of these days, and conveniently forget to mention women and children when they talk about poverty or human needs or America’s future or whatever.
This latest move by Kennedy, is so telling about the status of and respect for women’s rights, women’s voices, women’s equality, women’s authority and our ability – indeed, our obligation – to promote and earn and deserve and elect, unabashedly, a President that is the first woman after centuries of men who “know what’s best for us.”
Blah, blah, blah. The title alone is mind numbing. You mean not supporting Hillary is a betrayal of all women? Well vote me off the island! … This is why nobody listens to this bunch.
Word to the ladies of NOW New York: Black women are, technically, women too. And many o us — most by my count having spent the morning talking to people at polls here in South Florida — happen to love Barack Obama. So where does that leave us? Are we duty bound to vote for Hillary, too, just because we share her chromosomal makeup? I mean for God’s sake, if Teddy Kennedy — a man, no less — is duty bound to support the women, how can we escape our responsibility?
Perhaps it hasn’t occurred to these guys … I mean ladies … I mean Women with a capital W … but … um … just as it’s not fair to expect every Black person to support Barack, it’s not fair to expect everyone who supports equal rights for women to support Hillary (or to expect every woman to do so.) People … wait for it … have to make up their own minds, and choose the candidate who most inspires them. In fact, in most years, inspiration isn’t even an option. People choose the candidate who will keep them up the least at night worrying about their finger on the button. This year, at last, there are multiple candidates, on the Democratic side at least, who provoke inspiration. Don’t hate on Teddy Kennedy if Barack does for him the same thing he does for so many Americans, including a real, live woman-type person named Caroline. Funny your press release finger wasn’t trained on her…
NOW New York, thanks for the straight talk. Your statements reveal you to be creatures of the politics of yesterday. The rest of us have happily moved on.