Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice, and the Politics of Beauty

Following up on the prior post, I saw an article on a related theme:

The article's title was "Hillary Clinton, 'Au Naturale': Clilnton [sic] Hits Back at Critics."  As a result, I thought maybe the paparazzi had caught the poor woman in a swimsuit or something. 

However, the article is even worse.  Apparently, it makes news when the Secretary of State appears publicly with "very little make-up, sported glasses and had un-coiffed hair." 

Really?  This is news? 

Representative Eric Cantor and Senator Mitch McConnell routinely appear in public with "little make-up" and wearing glasses.  That never seems to attract any attention.

In the photo of Secretary Clinton, I'm not sure her hair qualifies as "un-coiffed."  It was combed.  She didn't have bed-head or anything.  It is not like she fell out of bed and threw on a baseball cap to hide her lack of grooming.

In the photo, it looks to me as if Secretary Clinton's hair was as neat as that of Representative Boehner or Senator Hatch.  Secretary Clinton simply has a whole lot more. 

Are we saying that a professional woman must spend an hour out of her busy day to blow dry and curl her hair into perfection befitting the senior prom?  We don't expect professional men to spend that much time on grooming.  Why is it newsworthy (or even noticeable) when women follow that sensible lead?

At the end of the article, there is mention that Clinton's predecessor, Secretary Condoleezza Rice, also is scrutinized for her appearance.  There is reference to a recent article on Huffington Post about the former Secretary of State's fashion style. 

Good grief!  When did you last see a retrospective of a male politician's wardrobe and an analysis of his fashion sense?  (Jokes about Senator Santorum's penchant for sweater vests don't count!)

1 Timothy 2:9

…in like manner also, that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing…

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