1.29.2008

National Organization for Women...Still Deluded

Given my political stands over the years,...anyone who knows me would justifiably think that I would be a member of NOW, the National Organization for Women. At the very least, my friends and acquaintances think I’m a feminist and have been forever. I accept that. I’m a feminist. I do believe in women’s rights in this still male dominated patriarchy in which we live. I supported the Equal Rights Amendment. I support equal pay for women. I basically support, just about everything that NOW fights for.

However, I am not now, nor have I ever been a member of NOW. And furthermore, I don’t know many women like me who are members of NOW.

I am a black and lesbian woman and while most people, or a lot of people assume that all women who fight for feminine equality are lesbian, it is simply not true. Like the general population, NOW members are overwhelmingly white, straight, middle class women.

From my standpoint, NOW has always suffered from the “mommy knows best” syndrome when it comes to women who don’t fit their general mold. m.k.b.s can be very condescending in it’s application toward minorities. The general thinking seems to be since we’re all female, we should all think and feel the same way, minority issues aside. Well, that isn’t always the case. Even, the late Flo Kennedy, who was a member, and black and lesbian, had her differences with the organization.

The New York chapter of NOW is railing against Ted Kennedy, calling him a traitor for endorsing Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton. The NY’ers said in their press release, that Ted sided with the men because he, like every other male in this country, can’t stand the fact that a woman is running for president.

They seem to be saying that Hillary should be supported simply because she is a woman. They apparently are willing to overlook the past week’s events in South Carolina where Bill Clinton, played the race card while campaigning for his wife. I guess they are willing to overlook the fact that she supported the war in Iraq.

Given Bill Clinton’s actions in South Carolina, does NOW think Hillary can control this man should she get the nomination? Does NOW think Hillary can win the White House with Bill at her side?

I don’t think so. I don’t think Hillary can control Bill anymore than NOW can attract minority women into the fold. Once again, the NY NOW is acting on assumptions rather than reality.

The more I see the Hill-Billy act, the more I’ve become convinced that Obama is the answer.

I wrote after New Hampshire that Hillary may have trouble getting support in the middle of this country. After South Carolina, I feel even more strongly that she will lose and lose big in the middle states. Like it or not, the Clintons are just flat out hated in the Midwest and south. Alienating minorities is really not going to help matters.

Up until last week, I was torn between Clinton and Obama. I personally will support whichever wins the nomination. But I am bothered by what is coming out of Bill Clinton’s mouth. I am bothered by NOW for presuming that all women should support Hillary, because she is a history-making woman.

Obama is also making history. He happens to be male, but he is also black.

Obama is also making sense. Obama is also looking to the future....not reliving the past. I like the fact that the young are making themselves heard in their preference for president.

The babies have spoken....Maybe NOW and the rest of us old folks should listen...
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