Is There Really a War on Women?
Dueling charges of misogyny from the left and the
right have become a depressingly regular media circus—one that,
regardless of the real issues, is mostly about moral posturing and
political point-scoring. Worse, both sides are feeding a toxic
obsession with women-as-victims and promoting a sexism of special
treatment rather than equality.
accuse liberals of ignoring and condoning sexist slurs against
right-wing women. Liberals accuse
conservatives of ignoring and condoning sexism except when it’s
directed at conservative women and can be used as a weapon against
One can argue ad nauseam about which side is more misogynist and
more hypocritical. There is no question that crude and sex-themed
attacks on “enemy” women have come from both camps—be it vulgar
language directed at Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton, or, most
recently, the Hustler magazine
photomontage of conservative pundit S.E. Cupp performing a
sexual act and the recent Twitter comment by blogger Dan Riehl
inviting liberal pundit Joan Walsh to perform a similar act on
him. I would say that, generally, the left has more consistently
(if often grudgingly) condemned such behavior in its ranks while
the right has been more likely to circle the wagons.
But here’s a question: Does any of this warrant the cries of
outrage about misogyny?
Yes, that Hustler montage was vile. But it’s not as if publisher
Larry Flynt has ever held back on sliming male social
conservatives. He was behind the famous parody ad that had Moral
Majority leader Jerry Falwell confessing to a drunken tryst with
his mother in an outhouse (prompting a Supreme Court ruling that
protected such satire no matter how distressing to its targets).
Just last September, Flynt
ran ads soliciting reports of illicit sex with Texas Gov. Rick
Perry, then a leading Republican presidential contender.
Riehl, too, is an equal-opportunity offender: He has posted
crude insults and taunts toward male journalists, including
insinuations of pedophilia and public lewdness—drawing only a
fraction of the criticism his comment about Walsh set off. Perhaps
You can read the rest of this article at: http://reason.com/archives/2012/06/02/is-there-really-a-war-on-women
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