Sometimes my Brain Just Can't Take the Crazy.
|Amy Widdowson||Sep 8, 2016|
Morning, lovelies! Yes, I saw parts of the Commander-in-Chief town hall last night, and yes, I am still gathering bits of my shattered jaw off the floor after Lauer let Trump lie to his face and didn’t correct him. Or how Lauer spent 2/3rds of his time with Clinton asking about her damned emails. And while we’ll go into some of the commentary tomorrow, I encourage you to read Jonathan Chait’s NY Mag take, Matt Lauer’s Pathetic Interview of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump Is the Scariest Thing I’ve Seen in This Campaign.
I didn’t send anything yesterday, as I had short-circuited my brain researching Phyllis Schlafly. I’d had a couple of people ask me about why I didn’t mention her passing in Monday’s Missive. Since I knew the basic feminist talking points having read Susan Faludi in middle school (fought and won against the Equal Rights Amendment, thought women should stay at home, marital rape = myth, didn’t care for the gays, voice for nearly the opposite of my personal political foundation, absolutely perfect hair,) I didn’t want to speak ill of the dead in such a way that would merely demonstrate my snarky liberal bonafides.
But as I was reading her obituaries around the interwebs, my brain just couldn’t hold on to all of the crazy stuff I was thinking. Take, for instance, her Washington Post obituary, where she is described as a "champion of traditional, stay-at-home roles for women,” - ok, sounds about right re: what I’ve heard before, get ready for indignant commentary - followed by a career round up mention that she "was an attorney who built her own media empire, writing or editing 20 books… published a monthly newsletter… wrote a syndicated newspaper column, produced radio commentaries... anchored a radio talk show... was a regular lecturer on the college circuit.” SHE WENT TO LAW SCHOOL AFTER SHE HAD KIDS. Hot damn, I was impressed.
And the thing is, if her politics were any other way, I’d be holding her up as an example for all fiesty young kick-ass women, an example of how to use what you have to hold the system’s feet to the fire, how to get what you want any way that you can. Because despite fighting against liberation of women, it seems that she was pretty damned liberated herself. After all, her husband isn’t mentioned in her WaPo obituary until the 18th paragraph. Rocket Scientists have had their families and beef stroganoff recipes mentioned in their obit ledes. Schlafly was a privileged woman who took the support her husband’s career gave her and had if fuel her cultural crusade, becoming the conscience of an entire political movement.
BUT THEN I WAS REMINDED of how she said
"Feminism is doomed to failure because it is based on an attempt to repeal and restructure human nature."
So after all of yesterday’s existential strife, this morning I read Phyllis Schlafly Is Doomed to Represent the Feminism She Railed Against by Michelle Goldberg at Slate and I was finally able to cut through two mornings-worth of word vomit and hit send on the email.