Wednesday, April 25, 2012

“Red State Feminists”

Last month I heard a really interesting interview on NPR.  Michelle Bernard, a conservative political analyst, was interviewed to discuss the presidential campaign.  The transcript from the interview is available at the link below, as is an option to listen to the interview.

There were a number of points in the interview, which I found intriguing. 

It was noted that over half of the votes cast in the last presidential election were cast by female voters.  Thus, women are an important segment of the electorate.  Candidates overlook them at their peril.  Indeed, Ms. Bernard sees women as a voting bloc in their own right.  She opined that overwhelmingly she believed they were “absolutely dismayed” at the focus in the GOP primaries on contraception.  Instead she wanted to hear the candidates talk about the economy and “the least amongst us” for whom “the American dream seems to be a very cruel joke.”

In the interview, Ms. Bernard described what she referred to as the concept of the “red state feminist.”  That was an intriguing concept to me.  I’ve lived in red states most of my life, but I’d never heard that phrase before.  Ms. Bernard also explained that red state feminists felt that in the last presidential election Sarah Palin had spoke for them.  Such women did not want to feel “demeaned” because they were raising children and not in the workforce.  As I understood the concept, a red state feminist is a woman who may opt to stay at home to raise her kids full-time, but wants to be respected for that choice.  A red state feminist is apparently someone who doesn’t agree with our culture’s emphasis on respecting only those who bring home the bacon.  Amen to that!  As a Christian, I don’t believe that our worth as human beings is equivalent to the number of zeros on our pay stub.

Ms. Bernard was asked about her reaction to Mr. Limbaugh’s comments about Sandra Fluke.  Ms. Bernard said she was “stunned” and “there really are no words to describe how sad” it made her to listen to his words about Sandra Fluke.  Ms. Bernard also said that she believed people running for the highest office in the land have a “moral obligation” to speak out against such bigotry, whether it was sexism, racism or religious bias.

Matthew 25:40

“And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’”

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