Soraya Chemaly: Six Absurdly Demeaning Attacks on Women!
Everyone knows women can be bitches sometimes, right? Unless they're cougars, that is, on the prowl, or if they're a bit younger, they're more like vixens, kinda foxy. They henpeck when married and go wet and wild when single. They can take out their claws out or put them away. Less dangerous are the girls and the young women, softer and fuzzier, who are more like bunnies,or, as the English say, like birds. Either way, diminutive and harmless. Girls like these are more like pets. Chicks or kittens. Everyone does it, using language that renders women as animals -the list is endless. This culturally ingrained misogyny, as reflected in acceptable language that dehumanizes half the world's population, is not limited to anyone country or religion, or followers of one or another ideology. But in US politics, a particular trend has emerged among a certain set of conservatives,, that of equating a woman with a farm animal. When, last week, Safeway Senior Vice President General Counsel Bob Gordon stood before a shareholders' meeting that portrayed Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi as being worth less "than a pair of hogs, he clearly had no reservations about publicly making this joke, and obviously thought it was funny. After all, he was only elaborating on a meme that's been evolving among right-wing Republican politicians in state legislatures. Let's see: There is state Rep Terry England, the infamous Georgia legislator comparing pregnant hogs and cows to women, while debating a proposal that became known as the "women as livestock bill, which would hold pregnant women to the animal husbandry standard of carrying a dead fetus to term.