"...And Hear The Lamentations of Their Women"

Newsweek hosts a mournful piece by Nina Burleigh, the kind of person who attended a celebratory dinner for Hillary before the votes were counted. I couldn't help but think of Conan's dictum on what is best in life as I read it. Burleigh thinks this was all about men voting down women, but reading her commentary -- so very smug and self-satisfied even in defeat -- the true source of the wave against the establishment ought to become clear.

Likewise, of course, her journalistic ethics: so much about the connection between Trump and allegations of abusive behavior, and nothing about Clinton's own role in silencing her husband's victims all these many years. Condemnations are surely due at least equally on this ground, assuming the truth of both Trump's accuser's remarks and Clinton's accuser's remarks. I do in fact assume the truth of both sets of accusations, which strike me as likely valid given the characters of these men, and Hillary's character as well.

So I can see why women might want a woman president, when the right one appears to take the office; but hardly this woman president. Burleigh's lamentations are sweet to the ear because they are the lamentations of someone who despises even other women if they do not submit to her allegedly superior wisdom. I am glad to see that class of people, who are sure they know so much better than we, disappointed in their hopes.

But, what to make of this?
Women voted against Trump by one of the most significant gender gap margins in history, but their support for Clinton was tinged with ambivalence. In fact, Trump beat Clinton among white women 53 percent to 43 percent, with white women without college degrees going for him two to one. The hoped-for “first”—and the lead-up to it—never produced the jubilation that greeted the election of the first African-American president in 2008, even though women waited much longer for this moment. The first female president, after all, would have been in the White House on the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage.
The 15th Amendment, which ensured that African-Americans could vote, was ratified in 1870. I'm not clear on how waiting 100 years is waiting "much longer" than waiting 138 years.

There's an obvious joke in there, but I won't tell it. I am, after all, a gentleman.


Anonymous said...

This business of expecting women to vote their vaginas makes exactly as much sense as expecting men to think with their penises.

Anybody who wants my vote had better talk to me about the candidate and policy.


Grim said...

...makes exactly as much sense as expecting...

Well, and indeed I get the impression that she does both of those things.

Christopher B said...

Once again, the gender gap is caused not by women overall voting against Republicans but the absence of men voting for Democrats.

Cassandra said...


I don't think the "women waited much longer for it" referred to the gap between getting the vote and seeing one of "your people" elected president.

That doesn't make any sense.

I think the author was referring to the fact that nation conferred the vote on blacks in 1870, but women waited another 50 years (until 1920) to get the vote. And all that time, they were actively campaigning for it.

So women did, in fact, wait much longer. Since the 1840's, by my reckoning :p

At any rate, it's a poorly written paragraph.

/good at math

Grim said...

That doesn't make any sense.

Exactly my point. :) Your suggestion makes more sense, but she very specifically links the women's wait time to the distance between gaining the vote and the first woman president.

It would be ironic if the correct defense of her skills at math came from the fact that she's bad at constructing a paragraph, given that she's a professional writer.

I had the thought that maybe she was timing African-Americans from the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or the end of Jim Crow. That would make a kind of sense, since women qua women didn't face a similar vote suppression effort to Jim Crow. Then women waited longer, because they waited from the ratification of the 19th Amendment until this year; African Americans only waited from 1964 until 2008.

But she doesn't actually say that, and we're left scrambling trying to figure out what she was thinking.

Grim said...

Oh, wait. She's this reporter.

Ymar Sakar said...

I couldn't help but think of Conan's dictum on what is best in life as I read it.

Lower echelon members of the Alt Right also quote the Conan line in agreement with this sentiment.

Cassandra said...

But she doesn't actually say that, and we're left scrambling trying to figure out what she was thinking.

Exactly. I think her writing/critical thinking skills are arguably worse than her math :)