Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Huckabee's Gender Incivility

Gasbag Mike Huckabee's deep thoughts about female candidates are currently making the progressive and feminist rounds.

Via Think Progress:
"Huckabee told The New Republic, 'I’ve twice run against women opponents, and it’s a very different kind of approach. For those of us who have some chivalry left, there’s a level of respect. … You treat some things as a special treasure; you treat other things as common.' He added that a male opponent is 'common,' while a woman requires 'a sense of pedestal. I’ll put it this way. I treat my wife very differently than I treat my chums and my pals. I wouldn’t worry about calling them on Valentine’s Day, opening the door for them, or making sure they were OK.'”
To start, here, I'll first note that I would first and foremost ask Huckabee, and any other man holding this view, if he's ever bothered to consider, you know, asking women, including the women in his life, if they want to be placed on this so-called pedestal of extra-specialness.  It's truly a special kind of non-consent when men place women, all women (ha ha, in theory), onto this patronizing pedestal not on the basis of our individual qualities but on the sole basis of our gender identity.

Which ties into my second point, which I've made before - In my experience, those who treat women like delicate flowers also treat us like we're not fully human, or capable, in the way that men are. The pedestal on which some men demand we're placed, in reality, serves as an excuse for them not to engage us as equals.

For instance, claiming that women are so different from men that we require to be treated in the public sphere as a "special treasure" suggests that we're weak and frail, two qualities not typically coded in our society with "leader" and "presidential."  So, Huckabee saying that a woman is a "special treasure" might, say, give him credence to back up with his hands in the air when Certain Sensitive Unladylike Topics come up in a political debate, like war and sexual assault, and suggest that some topics aren't fit to talk about with or in front of women.  Seriously, I watch Mad Men, I know that men with that era's gender mentality, like Huckabee, are that fucking condescending.

This strategy, while it might appear chivalrous and benevolent, actually begins to look a lot more like a very deliberate approach to frame women in contradistinction to the very traits associated with leadership and political competence, for purposes of male political gain.

Lastly, notice how Huckabee admits that he doesn't care about opening doors for his bro pals and that he doesn't have an interest in making sure his male friends are okay.  To men like Huckanee, women supposedly are godly beings, while men are common and not worthy of human concern - once again proving that, generally, it's traditional sexists who are the most misandrist of all.

MRAs, meet Mike Huckabee.  Take your shit up with him, playas.

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