Friday, June 19, 2009

Senator Boxer and how too many people are missing the point

I’m always amazed at how a seemingly small situation can snow ball into a complete clusterfuck simply by the reactions it causes.

A perfect example is the Carrie Prejean situation. Her opinion that “opposite marriage” is the only type of relationship that garners “sanctity” isn’t shocking on its own. It was the consequent heralding of her as some sort of protector of Christian ideals and the backlash of such idiocy that caused such a response in people.

Another issue is with Senator Boxer's asking of Brigadier General Michael Walsh to call her “senator” instead of “ma’am.”

Here’s the video:



Can you believe the gall of this uppity bitch? How dare she politely ask to be called by her title! A man would never give in to such trivialities! Let the tar and feathering commence…

Wait a second....What about the time people were outraged, outraged I tell you, that President Bush called Pope Benedict XVI “sir” instead of the expected “His Holiness?” Or the time former President Bush scoffed a reporter for calling him "sir" - of which made so little news I couldn't even find a good link to put here?

(Oh, that's right. Men are allowed to demand while women are supposed to weakly accept...)

What a lot of people fail to realize is “ma’am” is a loaded term that is often used to demote women (similar to how “boy” is used to emasculate black men).

The reality is we live in a world where not using a woman’s title is often a deliberate attempt to be disrespectful and is probably the very reason Boxer was bothered by such disregard (example: female doctors are often called “Ms.” Or “Mrs.” while male doctors are given the respect of the title “Doctor.” Or the fact that Hillary Clinton was often referred to as “Mrs.” Instead of “Senator” while Obama was given that measure of respect reflexively). Senator Boxer has been in the senate for 17 years. If she felt the need to correct Walsh it’s probably because she felt she had good reason.

Male judges don’t hesitate to let it be known that they want to be referred to as “Your Honor,” or "Judge So and So.” Yet do we feel the need to chastise them or debate their “temperament?” No. It’s just considered respectful to use their title and within their rights to require such regard. Why isn’t it the same with women?

It should be no surprise that a woman would want to be called by her title just as much as a man would.

The problem here isn’t that General Walsh called Senator Boxer “ma’am.” In fact, it’s the standard title military personnel are taught to use. If Walsh had called the male senators “Senator such and such” and referred to Boxer as only “ma’am,” then it would have been inherently sexist. But he didn’t, so I am positive he meant no disrespect by using such titles. (That’s also obvious by the easy manner he accepted her wishes.)

The problem is that, because Boxer is a woman, her simple request to be called by her title must be evidence that she’s an uppity bitch, cuntface, Senator Dirt-bag, or any other misogynist term that can be thought of. (Just read the youtube comments to get a clear picture of the caricature Boxer has been reduced to.)

Boxer politely asked to be treated a certain way and Walsh politely agreed to do so. All this situation has shown us is that people can’t fathom the idea that a woman would stand up for herself when she is treated in a manner that bothers her.

So I applaud Senator Boxer for having the courage to ask for what she wanted and General Walsh for having the decency of character to respect her wishes.

Too bad I can't say the same for a lot of other people.

2 comments:

  1. I'm a little behind on my blog reading so am in the process of catching up. I just wanted to say that this is the first post of yours that I've read in awhile and it totally kicks ass. Well done.

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  2. Thanks! I know it's a little choppy, but I'm glad I got my point across. :)

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