The Pink Elephant in the Room

Are Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann good news for women in politics? Writing for The New Republic, Michelle Cottle makes an awfully interesting argument:

When you think GOP rock star, who leaps to mind? Eric Cantor? Mitch McConnell? Mitt Romney? Michael Steele? Please. These guys aren’t exactly thrilling the masses . . . . Instead, it’s pugilistic lasses Palin, Bachmann, and increasingly, Liz Cheney who are channeling–and fueling–the passions of the base with their in-your-face conservatism.

On one level, I find this trend disturbing. On another, I cannot help but be impressed by–and even a bit grateful to–these conservative girls gone wild. Say what you will about their ideology; these angry female fringe-dwellers are arguably doing more than anyone to tear down some of the most tiresome stereotypes about women in politics.

You know what I’m talking about: Every few years someone writes a book, publishes a study, or simply drops a quote suggesting what a kinder, gentler, less competitive, more collaborative, less power-crazed, and fundamentally more ethical place Washington would be if only the gals were in charge. . . .

As gross generalizations go, this is, perhaps, more flattering than the one about women being too soft-hearted and weak-kneed to lead. But it’s still largely B.S.


Source: The New Republic (excerpt only available online)

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