Kathryn Jean Lopez makes a good point over at NRO’s THE CORNER:
STOP BEING MEAN TO BARBARA BOXER! [ K. J. Lopez ]
Margaret Carlson says Boxer’s taking heat because she’s a she. Women have it tough, she says, whether on the Senate floor or TV: “Women don’t have a lot of leeway in how they comport themselves. Could any woman behave on TV like Bob Novak or Bill O’Reilly and get her own show?” Clearly, she doesn’t watch enough Fox (Eleanor Clift? Susan Estrich?)
K-Lo forgot the third member of the Tonsil Trinity, Ellen Ratner, a termagant who seems to get enormous face-time on Fox.
Carlson’s column is part fainting feminist (“Beulah, get me mah smellin’ salts, they-ah bein’ mean to us delicate flowers agin! And peel me a grape!”) and part willful stupidity.
Once again – in Carlson’s very first paragraph – we see a member of the press who cannot make the simple distinction between a LIE (“Hello, we’re from the government, and we’re hear to help you,”) and DUBIOUS INFORMATION THAT THE WHOLE WORLD BELIEVED (Do I really have to go into the hard drive and find all of those quotes – again – from Teddy, Kerry, Hillary, Bill, Daschle, Chirac, Blair, Pelosi, etc, etc, etc stating unequivically that “Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction and believe me, someday he will use them if he is not stopped…” If I must, I will!)
I don’t understand how the press and the Democrats expect any thinking, reasoning person to take anything they say seriously, when they can’t make that very clear distinction, and when they are willing (frighteningly willing) to pretend that they never said, or believed, what they said they believed. It’s disgraceful. It’s dishonest. It’s the modern Democratic party. My grandparents would weep.
Meanwhile, Carlson gets herself all a-flutter over the supposed injustice in the world between how a man may comport himself and how a woman must do it. She goes on and on – I’m not going to bother quoting her – but here is a newsflash for Ms. Carlson: The world is not picking on Barbara Boxer for being an emotional and shrill inquisitor just because she is a woman. The truth is, we don’t like listening to men who carry on like insulted water fowl, either. In professional, public forums, it is not too much to expect our lofty “gentlemen and gentlewomen” in government to actually behave like gentlemen and gentlewomen. We don’t like Ted Kennedy’s loud and intemperate, red-faced bloviating, either. We don’t like Hillary’s shrill and guttural rants – not because she is female, but because there is no place for that SOUND, or those manners, in public discourse, or at least there should not be. We don’t like Al Gore’s diaphramatic yawps. We don’t like Richard ben Veniste’s mobster-shrugging shoulders and nasal snarls.
There is nothing wrong in expecting human beings who have a position in the public trust to engage in “gentlemanly” and yes, “ladylike” behavior. I didn’t think much of Tom Daschle, but I always appreciated his calm demeanor. Joe Lieberman is the consummate gentleman. Yes, Condi Rice and Elizabeth Dole are “ladylike” and there is NOTHING wrong with that. It is pleasant to watch and listen to; it commands a bit of respect. But words like “ladylike” and “demure” would probably be anathema to Carlson and her pals. One gets the impression that to them those words – somehow – mean “be less than you are,” but if so, well…I would be hard pressed to understand how such demure and ladylike women as Condi Rice, Senator Dole, Senator Hutchinson, Peggy Noonan, the late Barbara Olsen, or even Princess Grace or Audrey Hepburn – powerhouses all – either neutered themselves or denied their human potentialities simply because they managed to conduct themselves with a bit of temperance and grace.
Perhaps Ms. Carlson’s dilemma is that she would very much like to be able to name a Democrat woman who displays the those hated gifts of grace. I tried to think of a modern Democrat woman I could put into the list above, but the best I could do was the mighty Barbara Jordan – but she wasn’t so much ladylike as mannerly.
If anyone CAN think of a Democrat woman who can compete on the playing field of gentility, please let me know, I’ll add them. The Democrats might consider, carefully, the values to be found therein.