The conservative Media Research Council has announced the Best Notable Quotables of 2007. The winner is truly funny, and most are very instructive. However, another entry from the MRC, which arrived in my inbox a week later, caught my attention.
It appears sexism against Hillary Clinton has to become a big issue. Whether it’s idiots falling for deliberate trolling, or defenders who need foils for attacks they can’t handle, accusations of prejudice become the last refuge of political hacks.
The original of a curiously sanitised piece by Jonathan Tilove in the Seattle Times of 29 November was a little different from what’s posted there now. The original was published in an MRC email on 26 December, but has not yet made it to its rather primitive-looking website. The MRC says that in excerpt, it reads as follows:
Sen. Hillary Clinton is facing an onslaught of open misogynistic expression. Step lightly through that thickly settled province of the Web you could call anti-Hillaryland and you are soon knee-deep in ‘bitch,’ ‘slut,’ ‘skank,’ ‘whore’ and, ultimately, what may be the most toxic four-letter word in the English language….Thanks to several thousand years of phallocentric history, there is no comparable vocabulary of degradation for men, no equivalently rich trove of synonyms for a sexually sullied male. As for the word beginning with C? No single term for a man reduces him to his genitals to such devastating effect.
I say bollocks. What a prick. For start, this schmuck surely knows that the C word is commonly applied to men, without reference to either women or their degree of sexual sulliedness? And what tosser removes offensive language from an article after it’s been published? I’d also challenge this dickhead to search the “thickly settled province of the Web you could call anti-Bushland”, and analyse the epithets found there. Hint: they’re not “clear-eyed” and “rosy-cheeked”. Not even with witty sarcasm. In fact, I’d wager he’d find a fair few of a character that would offend his delicate sensibilities.
Besides, how anti-feminist of Tilove to think that Mrs Clinton is too fragile as a woman to tolerate the sort of ribald political rough-riding that typifies the more puerile corners of the interwebs.