I wish more Americans could turn off their hatred and watch this clip with open eyes. It’s a reminder to me why President Obama is ultimately qualified to be president. I couldn’t be more proud of him for staying a class act in the midst of the craziest election season in our history. Below the clip is a guide to my favorite moments in this “presser”. Enjoy!
:16 seconds – Facts about Medicare
1:30 Question on Todd Akins “legitimate rape” comment. POTUS: “Rape is rape!”, “men making decisions for women”
5:56 On Romney releasing his taxes, this is priceless.
7:05 Calling out Romney for the liar that he is in response to a Q about the Priorities USA ad that’s been distorted by the right.
9:00 “You can’t just make stuff up!”
15:40 Chuck Todd follows up on the Romney tax question. President Obama makes the Republican compliant media look foolish and brings it back to reality. Great moment.
Cross-posted at Angry Black Lady Chronicles
Guest Blogger: RL Gardner
Another shoe has now dropped in the Herman Cain sexual harassment saga, thanks to the revelations of Sharon Bialek at a news conference the other day. According to Ms. Bialek, Mr. Cain put his hand up her skirt, and tried to force her head down into his crotch. To me, this action crosses the line from harassment to assault.
Mr. Cain’s reaction was a rather angry, incoherent email in which he called the accusations of sexual harassment “nonsense” and claims that the media is setting him up.
Um, Mr. Cain? If these allegations by Ms. Bialek and the other three women are true (and I am thinking that they are), the only person who set you up is you. You are the one who said and did things to women that they didn’t like. You are the one who acted inappropriately. You are the one who put yourself in this position. Stop yelling at everybody else, and do what you told others to do: look in the mirror.
That being said, what I really wanted to talk about is what underlies all of this: sexual harassment and sexual assault are real. It happens all the time, whether it be an unwanted remark or out-and-out rape. It. Happens. It is perpetrated by men who think that they have the right to say anything they want, touch any woman they want, do whatever they want with her, and if that woman doesn’t like it, well, there must be something wrong with her. She must have been asking for it. She was dressed in a provocative way. She was leading you on. She was sending signals. She was asking for it!
I’ve got news for you, Mr. Cain and any other male out there who has been guilty of sexual harassment or sexual assault. She was not asking for it! You were foisting it upon her because you thought you could. Because you thought it was your right. Because you have no respect for women as human beings. Because you think that women are objects, property, chattel, etc., that that gives you the right to act out your fantasies, your desires, your power trips.
And when she says no, your male ego gets all hurt and sulky and angry and accusatory. How dare she reject you? How dare she say no? How dare she just not take what you want to dish out and be grateful for it? How dare she? She was asking for it, after all. You know that because, well, you’re a man, and that’s what men do. (Disclaimer: No, not all men do this; there are a lot of good, decent men out there who, even if they had thoughts of making an advance on a woman when said woman had not given you an opening to do so, would not act on those thoughts.)
It doesn’t matter if she says no. It doesn’t matter if one of your co-workers or one of your buddies says to you, “Hey dude, that wasn’t cool. Knock it off!” You just don’t get it. You just don’t understand what all the fuss is about, because you have no respect for women. Because you do not see them as human beings. So again, there must be something wrong with her. It couldn’t possibly be you, could it?
Let me ask you something, though. What if your mother, your wife, your sister, or your daughter was in a situation where her boss, her teacher, a guy at school, a stranger on the street, grabbed her or put their hand up her skirt, or tried to force her face into some guy’s crotch? Hmmmmm? Would you tell her that she was asking for it? Would you tell her she should just have gone along with it? Would you ask her why she thought it was such a big deal? Although I do know men who would indeed blame the female even if she were related to him, I also know men who are inappropriate with women they aren’t related to who would be appalled if a woman close to him were treated in this fashion.
I have had my ass grabbed. I’ve had my breasts grabbed. I was almost raped. I’ve had things said to me that to this day piss me off when I think about them. They weren’t funny then, and they aren’t funny now. I’m not your little toy, not some thing you can play out your sexual and power fantasies on. I am a person. You might want to remember that (or get it through your thick skull in the first place).
And while I know I may be asking the impossible, I’d like you to think about this. If you would find it offensive and horrible if someone did something inappropriate toward a female you are close to, then the next time you think it would be okay to slide your hands up the skirt of a female who is not your wife or significant other, remember that she has a father, a husband, a brother who would find it offensive if you did it. And keep your hands and your inappropriate remarks to yourself. Just. Shut. Up. Sit on your hands. Whatever. Just don’t do it, whatever it was you were thinking about doing. If the only way you think you can prove you’re a man is to treat women in such an inappropriate way, then I would say you aren’t much of a man at all.
Take a look in the mirror and think about that.
Also found at Democrats for Progress
If you needed one more example of why the Republican Party is morally bankrupt and hates women, here it is. From the Washington Examiner…(emphasis mine)
About two-dozen abortion rights proponents, including many legislators, gathered on the Statehouse grounds to express their anger over comments made last month by Republican Rep. Pete DeGraaf, of Mulvane.
During that House debate, Rep. Barbara Bollier, a Mission Hills Republican who supports abortion rights, questioned whether women would buy abortion-only policies long before they have crisis pregnancies or are rape victims.
DeGraaf (Republican Pete DeGraaf ) told her: “We do need to plan ahead, don’t we, in life?”
Bollier asked him, “And so women need to plan ahead for issues that they have no control over with a pregnancy?”
DeGraaf then drew groans of protest from some House members when he responded, “I have a spare tire on my car.”
Has anyone else noticed that there are no longer any adults in the Republican Party. That man, and I use the term loosely, is implying that women need to get used to being raped and even should plan ahead for it. It almost makes me wonder if the man has raped himself, if he can treat it so nonchalantly. I can’t even fathom how someone can think that way, let alone an elected politician in a supposedly legitimate political party. And that’s the rub, I guess. It’s a free-for-all in the Republican party now, anything goes. They clearly hate women, except the ones that have been brainwashed to believe their misogynistic horseshit. They’re really sticking it to the senior citizens, so they must not have living parents or they are so rich, they don’t have to worry about the future. They really dislike children and don’t give a flying fuck whether they are educated, my theory is that they want to keep them stupid so they vote Republican. They despise anyone who isn’t pasty white, with a few exceptions that they trot out as examples of their black friends. Clarence Thomas would be one example. Go read Allan Brauer’s excellent piece about our crooked Supreme Court Justice. So, basically, the Republican Party has become the party that welcomes all bigots and every kind of despicable person, come one, come all.
Hat Tip to ThinkProgress
With the horrible news of Lara Logan’s brutal assault and rape in Egypt, maybe we can use this horrific event to help educate young and old people that it has to stop now, goddamn it. Having grown up in a household with a very strong mother, who taught her 5 boys respect for all people and engrained in us the fact that every living being is worthy of respect, I can’t even fathom how someone could hurt another like that. Raping or sexually assaulting someone (overwhelmingly women) is the ultimate in disrespect of another human being. It robs them of their humanity and the effects are long lasting and in many cases permanent. My wife was raped twice in her life, the first time was when she was 14 years old (unreported) and the second time was at gun point by an ex-boyfriend when she was 36 years old (he went to jail for a few days).
As men, we have to stand up to these violent men and change the culture that allows them to somehow think it is OK to do this. People who rape almost always learned it from someone else, a parent, a relative, a friend, a pastor, a fraternity brother, a video game, a movie…oh man, it’s built right into our culture in many ways and it’s about goddamn time it stopped. Penalties for rape need to be harsh and just as brutal as the crime. There has to be consequences for these horrific actions, a price needs to be paid in order to send a message to people with these violent urges. It is a crime of violence, not sex. Domination and control, not arousal and it is never, ever justified no matter what the situation. NEVER!
Angry Black Lady has a post up by Emily L. Hauser about the assault on Lara Logan, here is a snippet…
But the simple truth is that the only culture that is responsible for this is human culture.
In far too many minds, all over the world, a female human is little more than an outlet or repository for male wishes or power (take a look at ABL’s post, below). Rape is regularly and consistently used as a weapon of war. Rape is regularly and consistently used as a method of control.
But rape is also just regular and consistent. Men rape for no reason other than that they think they can get away with it — all the time, every day. Doctors rape, clergymen rape, husbands rape, boyfriends rape, employers rape, “dates” rape. Sometimes they employ tricks and ploys and intoxicants in order to convince themselves that what they’re doing is not (as Whoopi Goldberg so memorably put it) “RAPE rape” — but if she said no, or couldn’t say no, or was too afraid to say no? It’s RAPE rape. It’s all rape.
And lots of times, rapists don’t even bother to convince themselves. They wanted a vagina, and there was one in the room. They wanted to bond with their boys, and a vagina walked by. They wanted to show that bitch, or prove their worth, or relieve themselves, or take what any man in his right mind would take. RAPE rape.
I hate to get political on the subject, but our friends in the Republican Party certainly aren’t helping to curtail it by sending messages like this…from Raw Story…
The broad anti-abortion measure would restrict federally-assisted abortion coverage to cases of “forcible rape,” excluding in that definition instances where women are drugged and raped, where women say “no” but do not physically fight off the perpetrator, and various cases of date rape. It also excludes instances of statutory rape in which minors are impregnated by adults. The victim in all cases would be denied abortion coverage under Medicaid and forbidden from seeking health care tax benefits.
Now they’ve since backed off on that language, but the message was very clearly sent to those men who think that drugging a girl or getting her drunk isn’t really “forcible rape”…right? Is it any wonder that our culture is so fucked up, white men have been running this country for way too long. My step father, a very wise man – may he rest in peace – used to frequently say that if women controlled the country, it would be a much better place. My parents gave a lot of money to Emily’s List.
STOP RAPE NOW! Speak out whenever you hear a man insinuate (or blatantly say) that it is OK and be forceful, don’t let it stand. And for goodness sake, teach your children to respect all people no matter who they are and engrain in them the golden rule, which appears in many forms in almost all religions “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”