We have previously discussed the bizarre treatment of young women who have turned to Bernie Sanders with other young people in unprecedented numbers. Democratic and feminist leaders have increasingly treated those women as ignorant, naive or disloyal. However the most shocking and sexist statement came from feminist icon Gloria Steinem who told Bill Maher on Friday night that young women are simply looking for boys and the “boys are with Bernie.” In the meantime, with Hillary Clinton next to her, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said that women supporting Sanders should go to hell. Why? These are women who are refusing to be sexist and simply support Clinton because she is a women. Isn’t that what the gender revolution was about? Many young women have been polled and say that they view Clinton as dishonest and the very personification of the establishment. One can certainly contest those views but the idea that women should be damned or dismissed for not supporting a woman should seem . . . well . . . sexist. Moreover, I fail to see how any of this is helping change any minds among young women.
Steinem triggered a firestorm when, after being asked about the heavy lead of Sanders among younger women, said “When you’re young, you’re thinking, ‘Where are the boys?’ The boys are with Bernie.” This is like repeating the long-standing insult that women just go to college for husbands. Even as a joke, it would be tasteless but, in this context, reflects the growing divide between older feminists and women between 18 and 30.
Not to be outdone Albright continued with, “just remember: there’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other.” Really? Does that mean supporting Carly Fiorina or someone like Sarah Palin? What is fascinating is that these young women are looking beyond gender and they are critical of what they see in Clinton on the issues, including issues not directly linked or beneficial to them. Clinton responded to these comments by laughing in appreciation.
There seems to be a rising level of guilt treatment or open contempt by older feminists for young women in failing to fall blindly into line behind Clinton. Younger women have proven far more skeptical including in response to Clinton’s statement that she cannot be considered the “establishment” in the race because she is a woman. The campaign is clearly pushing this line to press young women but it seems remarkably heavy handed and insulting to me. There are legitimate reasons to oppose (and legitimate reasons to support) Hillary, who has insisted that she is running not as the best woman but the best leader. Many (not all) younger woman has found Sanders more compelling as a leader. Yet, they are facing these insulting from older women for coming to what they view as the wrong decision in not supporting a woman.
What do you think?
Source: The Wrap