Saturday, September 16, 2006

In the defense of feminism?

I didn't intend to start out this blog by discussing anything deep, but a thread on Sybermoms incited what has been a several hour trek through the blogosphere, and I felt the desire to bring my own spin to it.

This thread linked to this article on Salon that summarizes a debate currently raging regarding this
photo of a popular feminist blogger posing with a group of other popular left-wing bloggers and former President Bill Clinton.

Some are criticizing Jessica for even attending the luncheon - they question why someone who describes herself as a feminist would choose to meet with a "sexual harrasser". Many of these people feel that the Lewinsky scandal trumps all of President Clinton's extensive work in promoting women's equality. Of course, whether you hold this view has much to do with whether you feel that what happened with Bill and Monica was between two consenting adults and thus is none of our business, or if you feel that he abused his position of dominance and thus was engaged in harassing behaviour.

Worse than that criticism though, are the folks that are chiming in regarding Jessica's physical attributes. I won't go into detail regarding the comments, as you'll read them yourself if you follow the links, but I was disgusted to read some of the cattiness coming from other women - most of them purporting to be feminists themselves. Particularly Ann Althouse, the one that started it all. Her comments are downright abusive and she should be ashamed of herself.

I must say that this morning's reading has inspired me to dig deeper into the finding out what the feminist movement is all about, both in terms of the political movement and philosophical theories of feminism. If anyone has any particular sources they'd recommend for reading, let me know in the comments.

I have more to say, but I'm tired and my brain is slightly jumbled from too much coffee and not enough food, so I'll continue later.

Added: Wow, I just read a comment on another blog that says what I've been trying to say in a much clearer way, so I'm just going to link you straight to it: comment by geoduck2

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