Crossposted from DemocraticDiva.com
On my post-vacay trek to the gym I decided to watch Anderson Cooper as I rode the exercise bike. The top story of the night was, of course, the GOP primary and CNN’s latest poll that has Donald Trump in the lead plus favorable ratings, including by gender:
But there is no gender gap among Republicans on favorable views of Trump: 60% of Republican women voters have a positive impression as do 57% of GOP men. Outside the Republican Party, women are less apt to hold a favorable view of Trump, just 17% of women voters who are independents or Democratic leaners see him favorably, compared with 29% of non-Republican male voters.
That’s a startlingly high favorable rating among women, though not really, as the video from CNN’s Randi Kaye demonstrates. Iowa Trump supporter Heather Halterman feels that Trump’s ugly comments about various women are not degrading and are secondary to her vague conception of the “good ideas” he has for a country “going down the drain” and his promise to protect her two sons from the (again, vague) threat posed to them by immigrants from south of the border. Halterman also likes Trump’s “pro-Israel” stance (who knows why?) and some non-specific things he has said about the tax code and building up the military.
Okay, whatever, lots of people have become enamored of politicians based upon charisma and other intangible qualities they have. The Halterman clip was followed by an interview with 20 year old Katie Utterback, who is currently the youngest caucus organizer for Trump in Iowa. Utterback claims that: “If you’re in the business world as a woman, you’re playing a man’s game. You’re going to saddle up your boots and you’re going just going to have to take it like a woman. Like a cowgirl.”
Whoa there, Katie! What’s with this “man’s game” shit? Like women mainly work for funsies and pin money? Women have worked and run businesses throughout history for the same reason men have, to earn a living and support our families. And the money that we women earn and circulate to uphold the economy is every bit as green and important as that of our male counterparts. Unless and until there are special (and generous!) Lady Subsistence Checks distributed to every female person on the planet by dint of our existence, I’ll be goddamned if I’m going to sign on cheerfully to tolerating a barrage of misogynist bile by the likes of Donald Trump and his wannabes as the purchase price for entering a business world that I have no choice but to operate in and for appearing in public while doing so. I mean damn, girl.
I am very much done with the whole concept of “strong woman” since it’s difficult to discern what is expected to earn that descriptor as opposed to “doormat”. It is odd to me, though, this idea that smiling and not pushing back while someone describes you as a fat disgusting pig or whatever would be the definition of toughness and would help propel you to success in your career as a woman. I’m pretty sure it has never worked that way for men.
It is obvious that Heather Halterman and Katie Utterback are fairly confident that, by aligning themselves with Trump and ignoring (or cheering) his disdain for women, they are somehow immune from it. They’re not necessarily wrong for thinking that, as I doubt Trump is going to be attacking either the way he attacks female critics any time soon. This is no mystery. The easiest Easy Button for a woman to push is to join with misogynists in dumping on other women.