HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Sparkly » Journal
Page: 1 2 Next »


Profile Information

Member since: Fri Mar 12, 2004, 11:06 PM
Number of posts: 23,711

Journal Archives

Hey Backlash - YOU shut up and disappear!! Hillary Clinton matters now, and into history!!

I voted' stickers put on Susan B. Anthony's grave
Women's suffragist Susan B. Anthony never got the chance to vote, so people are leaving "I voted" stickers on her grave as tribute to her.

Not a mention of HRC, even showing clips from 2016.

The women's march of 1/21/2017 supposedly had nothing to do with women relating to the anger we felt at the double standards thrown at Hillary Clinton every step of the way, the offensive behavior of Trump, the absurdity of his crowds, media, and her qualifications vs. his. I don't ever want to hear again that she was a "bad candidate." BULL!!

The Access Hollywood tape. The women who came forward against him, and his cruel hypocrisy sitting Bill Clinton's accusers in front of HRC at a debate. His making fun of her nearly fainting from exhaustion near the end of the campaign; his interrupting her during the debates -- these are things women can ALL identify with, some of us all too well. (And by the end of the Kavanaugh hearing, it was boiling over among my friends.)

So yes, Susan B. Anthony. Geraldine Ferraro. AND Hillary Clinton. In 2020, I know we're already looking at men again. But for the 100th anniversary, it would be awesome to have a woman nominee again -- one of an age to have fought what Hillary did, and no doubt Hillary would speak for her at the convention. She's always there for the greater good.

The Backlash LOVES to tell inconvenient women to shut up and go away. Throughout history, that's its main role. She's laying low, unfortunately. I hope someday the country will sing her praises, along with other women who were maligned in their lifetimes.

This is why Race and Gender Matter: EXPERIENCE MATTERS

I've said this before, in other ways and in other contexts, but here we go again.

We are NOT a "post-racist" or "post-sexist" society. For that reason and others, simple role-reversal arguments ("what if the man had been a woman," "what if the black person had been a white person" etc.) do not necessarily prove level equivalence.

We know the claims that President Obama is a Kenyan Muslim determined to destroy America somehow. The "defense" has said that his mother was white and he was raised by white grandparents, so he's not really so black. Then a backlash says that being "raised white" makes any claim to cultural blackness - in speech or mannerisms - fake. But our identity unfolds from experience of other's response to us. Obama presents what people see and respond to as a black face. In other words, there is no question he knows the experience of being a black American man.

Even more, we are cast as "Male" or "Female." Generations of women before us have fought for equal justice, knowing it requires equal representation. To get equal representation, I think we need to acknowledge that we are NOT post-sexist or post-feminist. We need to VALUE the experience of women who have lived what we have -- sitting in classrooms where only boys were asked what they wanted to be when they grew up; where men and boys taunted and humiliated us, or worse; where teachers belittled us, or worse; enduring street harassment, sexual harassment, sexual abuse, sexual assault, rape; feeling silence and shame.

Meanwhile, perhaps, being belittled, criticized, insulted, manipulated. You're too frivolous or too serious; too staid or too sexy; too timid or too assertive; too feminine or too masculine; too professional or too mommy-track; too analytical or too sensitive; makeover, makeover, makeover. We saw Hillary Clinton go through this from the early 1990s on. How dare she think, speak, work, not bake cookies, wear that, bake THAT, say THAT, wear THAT etc. etc.... (cue 2008: "Why is she so guarded?"

Experience matters, which is why I WANT to see women who have LIVED the experience of being women in positions of political power (and specially a president who was a woman between the 1960s and 1990s - I can dream). Women know about CHILD CARE. Women know about HEALTH CARE. Women know about WOMEN'S EMPOWERMENT.



*(I reserve the right to take this back if the Republicans come up with a Phyllis Schaffly or Anne Coulter type!)

It is still not hip to be With Her.

It wasn't hip to be with Susan B. Anthony and Cady Stanton, either.

Then it wasn't hip to be with Suffragettes who were beaten and jailed before the 19th amendment in 1920.

Then it wasn't hip to be "mannish" or "unwomanly."

Then it wasn't hip to want to keep your job, after training returning GIs to do it.

Then it wasn't hip to object to economic oppression or social repression, but you could be medicated.

Then it wasn't hip to be feminist, because pro-equality must = anti-men.

Then it wasn't hip to be for women, because nobody wants to be a militant feminist.

Then it wasn't hip to imagine we weren't already equal, because we are. If you don't get that, YOU must have issues.

Then it wasn't hip to speak up about sexual discrimination, harassment, domestic violence etc., because you women said you wanted equality.

Then it wasn't hip to support a woman who'd survived all this for president, because we're so past all that, we're post-feminism. That's so old! The hip thing is to be so arrived, that we oppose the woman. That's how up-to-the-minute we are.

Now we're so up-to-the-minute, she is persona non grata. The woman who went further than any other. The woman who was ahead of her time, all the time. The woman who deserves us to cheer and champion her. Instead, the message is, "Go away." and "If only it'd been Bernie or Biden..."

SOME day, people will realize how screwed up the national sexist psyche is, and how steadfastly strong she was.

Call me unhip. I'll always be WITH HER.

From the Million Mom March to this -- a Feminist perspective

Stinky and I showed up for the Million Mom March on Mother's Day, 2000, in DC (our first protest together).

The Million Mom March took its name from the Million Man march a few years earlier, but it was all about women taking on gun violence and advocating for gun control. We brought "Sparkly Jr." with us.

Then-Senate-candidate Hillary Clinton was there, and we got to shake her hand. Sparky Jr. shares her first name (different spelling), and I'd shown her pictures in the newspaper of the new First Lady, with a name like hers, reading to children back in 1993...

Discussion forums in 2000, as I recall, were a CNN message board (one board scrolling with every message -- so fast it was mind-boggling) and AOL boards. I got into heated exchanges about gun control, and learned a lot in having to debunk the absurd logic of gun nuts.

In 2004, I joined DU (via other message boards - MWO, BartCop, a Democrats' forum I've forgotten) after lurking a long while as a "Clarkie" -- some will remember the controversy!

The gun control debate was hot here. (Is there still a "Gungeon?" I don't even know!!) Voices for gun control legislation were in a slim minority. Unrestricted gun 'rights' were advocated as the true 'liberal' stance (because hey, "liberty" is two letters away from "liberal," or something). Reminders that this view of "liberty" was actually in line with far-right Republican policies, while the Democratic party's platform had long embraced gun control, were met with hostility. I had one comrade against arms. He was tireless, and he was banned.

The results of gun "liberty" have been tragic since the Million Mom March. As we were marching that day 18 years ago, some of the children who marched today were being born, or conceived, or considered.

I've often thought it would take another military draft to energize a new youth movement of the kind we saw during the Vietnam war, but here we are. These kids, too, have skin in the game. It's just a different game.

One difference is that the girls are equally loud and equally heard, if only because they are equally victimized. (Not to say that women were ever safe from men's violence, but that's another story.)

It's been a relatively short time since the Million Mom March, where we met HRC; it's been a short time since the bombastic orange moron maligned and maneuvered his way around her and into the White House; and it's been a short time since the Women's March in DC the day after the creature's inauguration, where women of all ages and colors, along with men supporting us, expressed our abject outrage.

I hate what has happened to spur this, yet I love seeing the power of the response, and especially the voices of women (always the strongest proponents of peace) -- heartfelt and HEARD, at long last.

Phrase to Retire: "Everyday People."

The best context for "everyday people" is the Sly & the Family Stone song by that title, with the lyrics:
I am no better, and neither are you.
We are the same whatever we do.

And "different strokes for different folks!"

I just saw a focus group of evangelical Trump supporters on MSNBC. The whole thing made my skin crawl, but especially when one guy said Trump should go out and hold more rallies for "everyday people."

What is an everyday person? Are there every-other-day people? Twice-a-week people? Only-on-Sunday people?

Of course, I know what they mean. They mean people just like THEM. The segment wrapped up with the question of what evangelical, so-called Christians like most about Trump: "religious liberty," which to them is the liberty to discriminate against people who don't share their religious views.

Everyday people are fine with discrimination, imposing their views on others, breaking up families, and having a sexist, racist, dishonest, money-grubbing imbecile as leader of the free world. This is what Jesus would want -?

I guess if you're not an everyday person, you're a liberal elitist intellectual chardonnay-sipping hot-tub soaking person. Or, you might be a lazy welfare cheat living off the government teat, depending on the stereotype of the day.

I'm just proud I'm not their definition of an Everyday Person.

Amid all the bravos at the Golden Globes tonight, there is one name conspicuously missing.

The Golden Globes celebrated women tonight.

Women celebrities wore black in solidarity. All lauded the roles of powerful women they played. There were words of righteous anger, there were heartfelt tears, there were "right-on's!" We're not gonna take it anymore!

Various women were lauded, from Rosa Parks to Margaret Atwood to Recy Taylor to a slew of fictitious women.

This, when we just saw the first woman become the nominee of one of the two major political parties... A woman who fought back sexism her whole life, who endured ongoing harassment as we all did, who broke all the 'norms' of first-lady as an accomplished woman in her own right (who didn't particularly care about her hairstyle or clothes or cookie recipes, thank you very much).

She took on health care when nobody else would touch it. She fought for children's rights, for minority rights, and yes for women's rights, worldwide. She became the most qualified candidate in modern history (some say equaled by George HW Bush, but she fought battles he couldn't have imagined).

Seeing her defeated by a monstrosity of misogyny, hostility, dishonesty, racism, homophobia, xenophobia, megalomania and abject disqualification for the presidency was a SHOCK.

So many people underestimated the power of sexism, its insidious persuasion and the depths of its effects, too many people were sure she would win (a narrative pushed by some opponents).

The shock *prompted* the 1/21/17 women's march in Washington. Women who'd spoken out against Trump were magnified to a level that couldn't be ignored.

Here we are, shy of a year later, preaching about courage, milestones, and women's progress! Lots of women at the Golden Globes, in glittering black gowns, surgically altered to look 1/3 their age, oh so proud of their sisterhood -- and none would DARE say the name of that one woman.

The one who didn't get makeovers, facelifts, tummy-tucks or liposuction. The one who fought tooth and nail to accomplish what she did from the time she was a little girl. The one who excelled on her own brilliance, and her own courage to work for causes she believed in. Sorry, she looked frumpy, and was never cool. She's not a thing you feel really cutting-edge, in-the-know admiring aloud at parties.

Just like the word "FEMINIST," her name was made into a pejorative by a strong backlash early on. Once a step of progress was accomplished, the reaction was swift -- "Feminist" became an uncool word to avoid. "I'm all for women's rights, but I wouldn't say I'm a feminist."

Now it's "I'm all for women's rights, but I wouldn't say.... HER name."

We can't move forward if we keeping sweeping every step we make under the rug, because it's immediately culturally shut away in the past, no longer relevant, no longer welcome, hip, or worthy of mentioning.

Can't we just say her name proudly, as the first woman to come as far as she did?

I'll start: Hillary Clinton!!

Imagining an SNL skit: "How do you handle an angry man? The Man Handler!"

I've heard it all today...

- "If Hillary had said 'Back up, you creep,' she'd have won the election!"
- "No, because the whole debate would have turned into 'You're acting threatening,' 'No I'm not, why are you so sensitive?' And she'd have looked out of control."
- "Okay maybe just a little flash of reaction - a look, a word, a gesture - and she'd have shown 'authentic emotion.'"
- "But people attacked her whenever she showed emotion, so she had to show reserve and presidential temperament."
- "She should have turned around and kneed him!"


The old commercial jingle - "How do you handle a hungry man? The Man Handler!" - popped into my head. It was not so long ago that ads showed women (as wives) being blamed for men having dirty necks (ring around the collar) or going elsewhere for better coffee (ahem), and women were usually seen serving husbands and kids, rarely sitting down and eating, themselves. Handling his needs to his satisfaction was her success.

The message of the "Man Handler" commercials, as I recall, was that manly men work hard, rough and tough and macho-like, so they come home hungry - and YOU'd better be ready to handle it with "Man Handlers!" (Some frozen or canned substance.)

So, since Hillary couldn't handle Donald in the perfect way, it's her fault he's president. By her own admission, she failed to figure out the perfect response to him, and wished she could throw it out there -- "What would YOU do?"

I'm amazed that she was able to navigate the impossibly fine line she treaded all her life -- her hair, her voice, her clothes, her words, her facial expressions. Outside of places where merit mattered, she was considered too weak, too strong; too emotional, too cold; too meek, too confident; too smart, too incompetent; too ambitious without merit, too accomplished to know her place; too outspoken, too calculated; too career-driven, too willing to save her marriage, blah blah blah.

(And now she has the audacity to write a book?! Why couldn't she say all this later, or sooner, or not at all, they ask? Why not go away, shut up, and let us absorb the lesson that running a woman candidate was merely "symbolic" and the country is not "ready?" Why doesn't she just hang her head in shame and disappear in disgrace, like all icons of progress in history have -- well fine, none of them ever went away, but SHE should!)

I suddenly imagined a skit re-enacting moments from the debates, or the campaign in general, with an actual "Man Handler" character who arrives to save the day and help her respond to Trump in the RIGHT way - the WINNING way. For example:

Trump invading her personal space in the debate. "How do you handle a hostile man? The Man Handler!" Time freezes and the Man Handler enters to explain exactly how she should respond. Similarly:
- Trump calls her "Crooked Hillary" or interrupts her with "Wrong!" "How do you handle a childish man?" The Man Handler has the answer.
- Trump denies Russia's involvement. "How do you handle a Putin Man?"
- Trump calls her a "Nasty Woman." "How do you handle a (I dunno, Dickweed Man)?"

Various scenes ask "how do you handle" a Lying man. Clueless man. Crazy man. Desperate man. Angry man. Psycho man. Each time, the Man Handler comes to the rescue to tell HRC exactly what to do, and each time, there's a backlash showing how it failed.

I guess the skit would have to end with the Man Handler giving up. Because there IS no way for any woman to handle a horrid man like Trump -- not in this country, not in our time.

And I guess it's not funny at all.

Bernie just went from being a Kucinich to being a Nader.

I always liked Sanders and what he had to say. I thought his candidacy would keep important issues in the debate, and would neutralize the usual attempts to portray the Democratic candidate as "lefty socialist Marxist pinko" blah blah blah blah blah.

And frankly, I would LIKE to see the country go more lefty socialist Marxist pinko whatever.

But let's be HONEST. (Despite the fact that "honest" is now a word that means "raining on our parade" and "establishment" and "not on our side" and "how dare you say magic sparkly unicorns aren't real! All you have to do is believe!!"

I thought he was a Kucinich. I thought he knew where the country is, wanted to stop Republicans, cared about his issues, and didn't want to jeopardize everything with unrealistic ideas about taking the White House.

Once he's seen it in far-fetched reach though, he wants to go for the gold, with the RNC cheering him on. He could get a brokered convention. He could get the nomination and continue with zero opposition from the rightwing. Oh, and Congress will magically turn Democratic (or Socialist), there'll be a "Revolution" in DC, and things will happen with no plans whatsoever -- banks will break up, the 1% will pay their fair share, the world will live in peace...

Now he's Nader. He's on the outside looking in, criticizing people who actually have been in the fight and are running to continue the battle, not to preach from on high as IF things were different or wishing will make it so. Saying Secretary Clinton is "Establishment" and implying that she's corrupt, dishonest and immoral was bad enough. Tonight he actually said she is "unqualified?!?!!"

This is not a constructive debate. It's a DESTRUCTIVE battle. I can't put myself through more juvenile politically-fundamentalist rantings on DU. Been there, done that, they can't be convinced. She is evil, he is pure, period. So I'm not going to hang out in GD: Primaries.

I so hate confrontations (and so easily feel hurt), I've kept my Louise Brooks avatar... But I'm coming out. I'm changing my avatar. Then I'm going to go make another donation to HRC.

I can respect a Kucinich. I can NOT respect a Nader.

Perspective from a Jaded Old Democratic Feminist Person

I can see DU is all in a lather about the primaries, and I've seen it all before.

Philosophically, I am as "lefty" as left can get, but defined by "who you support" -- like a Tiger Beat FAN thing -- I can understand that you (especially if this is your first rodeo) might declare that I'm "third way" or "DINO" etc. I've heard it all before.

(For the record, I've also been called a Commie Pinko Feminizi Socialist Hippie Libtard, but enough bragging.)

The first vote I could make was for Jimmy Carter, but I wasn't great at picking winners. I was fierce about Mondale/Ferraro, I loved Michael Dukakis, and Paul Tsongas was my preference over Bill Clinton -- but I voted the straight Democratic ticket always, and doubt that will ever change.

I was dumbfounded that Reagan could win twice. I could not BELIEVE Bush II managed to get into office in 2000 over Al Gore, and 2004 is beyond explanation -- history will take a long look at that one.

That's the election that brought me to DU. I was a regular at MWO ("Media Whores Online" and a "Clarkie" who didn't dare join DU until he bowed out. We had a lot of primary candidates that year, and a big, nasty brouhaha happened here on DU arguing over the TRUE leftist liberal who'd take the fight to the rightwing vs. the pragmatic "electability" approach. Did I mention that it got nasty?

There was a lot to learn that year, and no way to unlearn it.

A few observations:

1. Democratic candidates, at least, are neither as perfect nor as horrible as they seem from any perspective.
2. The distance between policy positions of Democratic primary candidates are microscopic compared with their differences with Republicans.
3. It shouldn't be a game, but IT IS. The media is on the side of ratings, not truth. The RNC machinery feeds the media sensational "scandals" with tidbits that add up to "narratives," like "Al Gore is a serial liar" and "John Kerry faked his wounds."
4. In the primaries, you can count on the media to drum up drama for the same reason, happily echoing anything the rightwing drums up. The front runner is always AWFUL, and someone better is always right around the corner.
5. The front runner is the front runner for a variety of reasons, and will always be the target of the RNC as well as the other Democratic candidates. That can create bitter fights within the party, and I am so PROUD of Sanders and Clinton, as our front-runners, for staying focused on issues and not getting into the mud. This is the most civil primary season I can remember.
6. For the same reasons, the RNC will always attack the person they don't want to run against, and stay silent (or feign "Let's hope he/she doesn't get into the race!" in regard to anyone else. They propped up John Edwards to the bitter end, as an example.
7. We want to believe THIS candidate is really different; THIS one is starting a movement, a revolution, a grassroots campaign of the people that will change everything about politics as we know it!!! THIS one at last knows what has to be done, what we need to fight, how to win that fight, and how to get young people energized and engaged!!! I've seen it over and over again. Guess what. In Washington DC, where we have this messy mix of representatives with so many strings attached, it just doesn't happen. It can't, it won't, it's not where the battle is really fought. And I am as sorry as you are.
8. There is money in politics. Money and fear of death basically rule the world, and that won't change. All we have as a country, when you get right down to it, is a few people in black robes who are SUPPOSED to uphold basic principles above all else.
9. Pragmatism might seem like "compromise," which equals "going over to the dark side!" I understand that -- it feels really good to fight for your convictions with a strong commitment to what's right vs. what's wrong, imagining a clear line of battle. That's also the reason it's so easy to impugn the motives and characters of your fellow Democrats. Been there, done that. "THIS time" it's different, every time.
10. As I write this, it just seems I should have a "10." I will just share an opinion here about a dimension of this election nobody really wants to talk about -- after all, it's playing a "card," it's being a "victim," and it's very, VERY unfashionable. And that is the long history of Hillary Clinton as a woman.

I know, I know!! "The Clintons!!" I've heard it for so many years now, I'm too old to count them. (All together now: "The Clintons think there are different rules for them and everyone else." It has become fashionable and "smart" to echo rightwing memes and malign her, accuse her, paint her as a greedy, dishonest, corporate shill warmongering beast. To the extent life in politics makes anyone a beast, okay -- she's earned a strong shell. And yeah, she wouldn't make the best talk-show host in the world. (Who among them would?)

She's not been my favorite person on the political scene, but I do know that she is smart, strong, hardworking and pragmatic. I have seen her fight back against rightwing attacks since she first appeared on their radar in Arkansas. She is smarter, feistier and more liberal (oh gasp!) than her husband, and she has had to harden her shell as she's fought back against bogus attacks, one after another -- How dare she have a career and accomplishments of her own? What does she have against baking cookies, against women who stay home? What's with her hair and outfits? And her annoying habit of having a mind, and speaking it!!

The nature of human psychology makes it easy from there to gather together, point at her and decide, "We don't like her." "She is a warmonger." "She is all about money." "She lies." Hating her is the smart, fashionable, popular thing to feel. It's easy to overlook how deep the social prejudice goes, so soon after her arrival as the dreaded "liberated woman" target in DC, and not so long beyond the time we got the vote.

(I can hear it now -- "I'm a woman and I hate her." "You're playing the 'sexist' victim card." "It's all about the issues." "He's just better." "Warmonger!" "Goldman-Sachs!" Spare me. It is simply easier to hate -- and I mean HATE -- women, and this woman in particular, because she's pushed against it for decades, on her merits alone.

I LOVE Bernie Sanders and I always have. I have no big disagreement with anything he says. There is no conflict, in my mind, between cheering him and supporting her. She too is breaking ground -- it's just harder to see that, mired in this political culture.

If you skimmed this to see which flag I'm waving, mine is just DEMOCRATIC. (I also walked to school, uphill both ways... Someday you'll see.)
Go to Page: 1 2 Next »