06 September 2008

Can we call it sexism if it's done by her supporters?

Several days ago, I asked a question on my blog about Alaska's Govenor Palin's selection as the Republican Vice-President pick with a t-shirt that referenced her perceived attractiveness:
"I wonder if this is the intended message of Senator McCain's VP pick?"
A few Unitarian Universalist bloggers criticized me for asking this question.

However, it's interesting to view some of the campaign buttons worn by Gov. Palin's supporters:

I'm relieved to see that her selection as the Republican VP candidate was a measured and well-reasoned decision based on her public service experience as a PTA parent/community organizer and politician.

It would be a shame if her appearance was a major factor in Senator McCain's decision-making process.

The 2008 election is more important than a high school election,

However, our elections seem to resemble high school elections in terms of framing of the candidates. And because of this, the outcome is worse for our nation.

Instead of voting for the "smart" candidate, we end up voting for the more popular kid or more attractive kid.

This is how we ended up with the "class clown" president instead of the Nobel Peace Prize winner president in the White House.

And we can't afford another four years of "class clown" government.


goodwolve said...

Sad that we are stuck in high school. So much for those college, corporate, and working years. We are still the same people we were in 10th grade. Sad. - I will point out that many people think Obama is hot too. Granted hot in a different cooler kind of way, but hot none the less. So we Dem's are just as guilty of being in high school.

Cee Jay said...

I don't think anyone has plans to make buttons with, "Buckeyes for the Hunk"

fausto said...

You're right on target with this, Steve. Double standards are popping up everywhere these days.

Hope the hurricane wasn't too hard on you or your fellow congregants, btw.

Robin Edgar said...

Steve Caldwell is being just a tad disingenuous here. His question -

"I wonder if this is the intended message of Senator McCain's VP pick?"

Is open to considerable criticism when one understands that GILF stands for -

Grandmothers I'd Like To Fuck

So the not so hidden inU*Uendo in Steve's not so innocent question snidely suggests that "the intended message of Senator McCain's VP pick" is that John McCain *himself* would like to fuck his pick for Vice President Sarah Palin. Anyone who does not *get* Steve's snide insinuation is either ignorant of what GILF means (something that a free and responsible Google search for the meaning of GILF will reveal in an instant. . .) or incredibly naïve. I personally do not consider Steve Caldwell to be ignorant of the meaning of GILF, and thus the not so subtle subtext of his question. . . nor is he likely to be naïve about it considering much of the subject matter of this blog.

"It would be a shame if her appearance was a major factor in Senator McCain's decision-making process."

Is it any more of a shame than the well known fact that male candidate's appearances are often a major factor in Presidential or other political campaigns Steve? Presumably not considering the rest of your post here.

Robin Edgar said...

What was it that Joe Biden said about Barack Obama a while back?

Oh ya. . .

"I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and *a nice-looking guy*"

Steve Caldwell said...


Actually the "G" in the acronym was on a t-shirt before the announcement of the upcoming birth of a grandchild.

Gov. Palin wasn't a grandmother when the t-shirt first went on sale on CafePress.

The "G" stands for "governor" and not "grandmother." The rest of the acronym is the same as the "ILF" in "MILF."

My original question was really the following:

Did the McCain campaign intentionally pick an attractive minimally qualified candidate who panders to the ideological base of the GOP? If so, why?

The Prestige, a recent movie about rival Victorian era magicians had a line in the screenplay where one character talks about the importance of using an attractive assistant to distract the audience during a magic act.

Perhaps we're seeing the political equivalent here?

Steve Caldwell said...


Thanks for asking about the effects of Gustav on us. We had some wind (20-30 mph) and about 2-3 inches of rain.

Good luck with Tropical Storm Hanna which is headed your way.

Bill Baar said...

How is this any different than the Obama Chick?

It's not high policy talk, but it seems pretty harmless to me.

Obama and Palin attractive people and simply have sex appeal and I suppose they both go along with it... Obama certainly does as I've watched him up close far longer.

I don't think I'd read anything deeper into it.

Chalicechick said...

When I saw "I wonder if this is the intended message of Senator McCain's VP pick?" about a button with the message "GILF," I took this to be you saying that McCain picked her primarily because HE wanted to fuck her, which is a FAR more sexist sentiment than merely noting that she's very attractive, which, as you note, plenty of people have already done.

When I figured out that you just meant to make one more joke about her appearance, I stopped bugging you about it.

who does think that it can be sexism if it's done by her supporters. (cf. this

Joel Monka said...

The "pretty" factor isn't just for female candidates. I was sent this joke in email: What's the difference between Palin and Obama? One of them is a well turned out- let's be honest, damn sexy piece of eye candy. The other shoots her own food.

Robin Edgar said...

Ya I think Senator Joe Biden came up with that one Joel. ;-)

BTW I agree 100% with CC that it can be sexism if it is done by Sarah Palin's supporters.

Sexism is sexism is sexism. . .

Then again sexy, is sexy, is sexy. ;-)