I was born in the 50’s. I know what it’s like to make less money than a boy–because he needed more money to take a girl out–that was in 1970–most of us didn’t date but “hung.” I know what it’s like to be chased by a boss who, it turned out, hired me because I reminded him of his “underweight long haired no good hippie son.” I wasn’t underweight or a boy; this was a very respected publishing house. Still I was too ashamed to go back for my last paycheck.
I know how far women have come. I refuse to type myself as a “feminist.” I refuse to vote for a candidate simply because she’s a woman. I desperately want a woman president, but I want one who represented the state she was elected Senator from, who hasn’t been talking out of a ten sided mouth, or was using the immense popularity of her husband–not really a feminist thing to do.
Maria Pappas might be my age, live in my state, and be a life coach–I’m a non practicing Licensed Social Worker, but she doesn’t speak for me. Nor do I feel any sympathy for her. Yes you can write something the next day diffusing a blog post, but as a blogger I know the post lives on–as does her press release.
Women of our generation do have a special responsibility. We were born into one world and that world changed on us. We learned that most of us can’t do it all. We learned many things and we have a responsibility to encourage and champion younger women in ways that many of us weren’t.
Sexism isn’t usually as blatant as the examples I began with. I admit that I’m an incorrigible flirt, and enjoyed it in a work situation–within well defined limits. It’s that type of thing we should be focusing on–office relationships are more usually encouraged now and it’s about time. It was hard to be engaged and have to sneak out with my fiancee a co-worker. The one after Zachary.
Friends with benefits always happened. It’s just now being talked about openly.
Sexism is more insidious now. We need to understand and talk about the almost invisible lines. “Feminists” have never stopped thinking inside the box and it’s truly time to break that box.
My work was always considered excellent. It was never the problem. I hit glass ceilings because of my personality–too friendly, too flirtatious . it’s probably why I love Boston Legal so much–finally a law firm I would have fit in. I wasn’t really flirting–it was the way I compensated for having certain problems.
Bosses would have preferred me to compensate by having no personality. But then I wouldn’t have done the great training sessions, or gotten people to do their work because they weren’t just doing it for the company or their pay check–they were doing it for me.
As a woman who has lived a very complex life I understand the need many women have for order and professionalism. But professionalism is more than dressing or acting a certain way. It’s getting the job done in the most expedient and yes inspirational way.
Who can Hillary Clinton inspire? She has become a walking caricature; a shell of the Hillary of 1992. I do like her health care proposal more than Obama’s–but I originally supported Edwards. Then one day I really listened to Obama, and realized that this man can be the person who can lead the country out of the mess it is now.
I find it so sad that in 2008 a woman in power would tell other women to vote for a woman just because she is. I am a woman who is going to proudly vote for a man on Super Tuesday.