I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Monday, February 20, 2012

He-Man Woman Haters Club

Digby has had much to say of late about the conservative war on women:
Yes. Women know very well that they are pregnant and, what's more, they know very well that it will eventually result in the birth of a child. If they didn't know this, they would not be taking proactive steps to end that eventuality. In other words, if she didn't know what she was doing, she would do nothing. The idea that after a woman finds out that she is pregnant, decides that she doesn't want to give birth, makes an appointment, arrives at the office for the procedure, then needs to be shown that she is pregnant is fatuous in the extreme.

There are only two reasons to support this: you either believe that women are mentally disabled and are incapable of understanding that they are pregnant and will give birth if they don't have this procedure or you believe they should be punished for seeking the procedure by shoving a probe inside them while lecturing them about their decision and showing them pictures of the inside of their wombs. That's it. My guess is that Tyler Cowan and the rest of these people making all these clever bon mots believe the second. But it doesn't matter: you're a jackass either way. [emphasis mine]
Digby's probably right about Cowan and the others who relish the idea of punishing women for having sex that they didn't OK with Cowan first. But I think Digby's first reason explains a great deal of the conservative mindset - particularly when it comes to teachers and public education.

As I've noted before, corporate "reformers" love to push the idea that teachers are too stoopid to understand how they are being manipulated by their unions:
Every time these two take a bat to the NJEA, they always couch their words by saying how much they love teachers. Leave aside the fact that Christie has attacked teachers - not the NJEA, but teachers - over and over again. Leave aside the economic hits the teaching corps has had to take while New Jersey's millionaires get tax gifts.

What strikes me is how utterly patronizing their attitude is. Do they think teachers are so stupid that we couldn't change our leadership if we wanted to? Do they think we are incapable of demanding accountability from our unions? Do they think we are so naive as to believe we could get good executives to run the NJEA for less than six-figures?

I've said it before and taken heat for it, but I'll say it again: this is a result of straight up sexism. Christie never goes after the cops or the firefighters or even the CWA workers like he goes after teachers, and the reason is clear: he is comfortable verbally abusing women. He did it to Valerie Huttle and Loretta Weinberg and Marie Corfield without the slightest hesitation. Is it such a stretch to believe that he thinks that a profession with a majority of women is a profession that is full of bubble-heads that can be easily duped by their union?

Yes, I know what I'm saying is controversial; it's also correct.
And the War On Vaginas only provides further proof. These conservatives think women are such a bunch of knuckleheads that they couldn't possibly understand what's going on inside their unions or their uteruses. It's up to big, strong he-men like Chris Christie to save them from themselves.

How do you feel about that, gals?

Looks really comfortable, doesn't she?


Anonymous said...

Pretty much makes me feel like eating some fresh red meat and growling. I want men to have anal probes to measure their prostate's health before they can get viagra or similar ED drugs. I sincerely mean that.

I'm done

Duke said...

Anon, I understand where you're coming from. But on behalf of all men, I think it would be best if we just all stopped trying to put stuff into each other.

Unless we consent, of course.

jcg said...

Jazz man, you've said it perfectly in this post! It's critical that we understand economic and religious fundamentalism's dominance over the public discourse and the bullies in both milieus. In general, bullies thrive in our culture of cruelty and justify their power by pushing the weak and vulnerable out of the way.
Neoliberal reformies and religious fundamentalists are both oriented towards cruelty (e.g., homophobia, repressing women's reproductive choices, excessive discipline, sweatshop wages, downsizing and layoffs, defrauding investors).

The edu-bullies want our profession like Walmart wants their women workers- obedient and cheap. Reformy edu-policies rely on the same degradation of work and wages in a predominantly female workforce by taking advantage of implicit acceptance of male dominance over women.

Further, bullies are going after our identities making our counter arguments fundamentally unacceptable to the general public. Teaching represents a traditional low wage, female underclass whose only means of influencing policy is through a union organization. Thus, the full frontal assaults on our unions as corrupt and the passive aggressive character attacks on teachers as ungrateful and lazy.

We must resist these bullies as a unified front and call them out every chance we get.