This is an especially weird year for dissecting gender politics. On the one hand, we have Hillary Clinton, who, unlike any other presidential candidate, has the added advantage in appealing to women of actually being a woman. On the other hand, there is Donald J. Trump, whose predominantly white, male supporters delight in him saying “politically incorrect” things, even when that means implying that his opponent’s wife is unattractive.
Mr. Trump is also running a campaign that answers the question, What if male voters were treated like female voters? What if they were reduced to a single issue, condescended to, and counted on to show up anyway?
There are plenty of examples of how campaigns have done just that to female voters for years.
In 2014, the College Republican National Committee released a series of ads aimed at young women, based on the TLC program “Say Yes to the Dress,” with Republican candidates for governor standing in for garish taffeta creations. In one of the ads, a young woman models a strapless wedding gown called “The Rick Scott,” to her female friends’ delight. Her mother wants her to wear the frumpy “Charlie Crist” dress.
In his re-election campaign that same year, Senator Mark Udall, Democrat of Colorado, ran ads contrasting his record on supporting access to abortion and birth control with that of his challenger, Cory Gardner. At one point in the campaign, ads about abortion and birth control made up more than 50 percent of the television spots Mr. Udall had on the air, earning him the nickname “Mark Uterus.” In the end, Mr. Udall won the female vote by aneight-point margin, but still lost to Mr. Gardner.
At a time when a woman’s place is in combat, it is FUCKING INSANE that our two neverending wars are not considered a “women’s issue.” At least the pay gap has something to do with the economy, but overall women are considered to care about boobies and babies and that is IT. I wouldn’t say abortion access and breast cancer treatment are unimportant, but I would say our country’s economic condition and the state of our health care system and how much we pay in taxes have something to do with our lives as well.
Reducing us to candidate “shopping” like we’re buying clothes is bad. So is reducing us to childcare and breast exams.