Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Two Major Hurdles

In the last post, I wrote because my intention was to underscore the progress made by each of us, particularly those of us in Alabama has been immense. I'd like to break this post down to two separate parts.

Part One

The question now comes as to whether Obama can court his fair share of support among not just White female voters (who still favor Senator Clinton) though at a smaller share than before, but among all Latino voters as well. One of the major reasons Clinton won California is that she captured a majority share of Latino and Latina support. At 15% of the country, they are the dominant minority in this country and have been for a few years now. However, until this point, their voices have not been nearly as vocal as those in the African-American community. We have not had a charismatic Hispanic leader (which the exception of Cesar Chavez) who has spoken for the Latino population, and certainly not won in recent times. The reason for this is simple. Latinos have not lived here in the United States in great number across the country for many years.

Those they put up with many of the same discriminations faced by Black citizens, their overall voice is silent and it is hard to gauge the important impact they have in this country, and indeed in the electoral process. How will Barack Obama attract Latinos voters to his side? How are the Clintons somehow managing to make the majority share of voters back her instead of Obama.


This section directly is written towards White female voters, who until now have cautiously split their votes between Obama and Clinton. I understand the reasons why they felt split and why many of us felt split. Vote for a white woman, when glass ceilings still exists and woman are paid less than men for the same amount? Vote for a black male when forty years ago they were still second class citizens and forced to ride on the back of the bus?

There are two brands of feminism raging right now. Second generation feminism and Third generation feminism. Third generation feminism, a reform of the former, is being proposed by younger feminists like yourself. A man, claiming to be a feminist! Shocking! Yes, but true.

One of the blogs I read is Surviving the Workday: in which Ms. Theologian addresses the differences between both movements. In particularly, she discusses the problems that have befallen the second generation feminist movement and proposed solutions to reform it based on the ideas of younger, newer third generation feminists like myself. The reason why people see feminism as negative and liberal and objectionable are because the original proponents of Women's Liberation have not worked through their issues.

Leonard Pitts underscore this very same point in his column entitled Rejecting Feminism Makes No Sense.

I will let her words speak from themselves. Here is her column from 29 January.

1. How It Feels to See Second Wave Feminism Lose Moral Integrity

There was a time when I admired second-wave feminism. Really. I read Betty Friedan. I read Gloria Steinem. I was a member of NOW. I got that “the personal is political.” This is really my mom’s generation of feminism. I’m steeped in it. I get it. At least I thought I did.

Yet, I knew that, much like first-wave feminists, second-wave feminists basically responded to the needs of white upper-middle class straight women in the first world and left out anyone who was lesbian, bisexual, a person of color, or not upper-middle class in the first world. I knew this. I tolerated it as sort of an anachronism as I engaged in third-wave feminism.

But now that time has come to an end because my annoyance threshold has been reached.

JANUARY 28, 2008
11:11 AM

CONTACT: National Organization for Women - New York State
Marcia Pappas, 518-452-3944 - 518-469-2661

Senator Ted Kennedy Betrays Women by Not Standing for Hillary Clinton for President;
Ultimate Betrayal Felt by Women Everywhere

I didn’t feel any betrayal except by NOW-New York, which has sexistly assumed Kennedy must support Clinton, who (obviously) must represent all women, thinking much along the lines of Steinem’s editorial a few weeks ago. This is the stupidest most sexist assumption I’ve heard. This woman doesn’t speak for all women. But ahem that’s always been the problem with second-wave feminism.

Let us contrast this with the third-generation feminist viewpoint being proposed by people my age.

This is also from Surviving the Workday, and here is her later post of 30 January.

2. More from the Third Wave on the Second Wave

So here is a little video from Feministing on how the web site got its start. While you don’t have to watch the whole thing, Jessica gives some of those second wave v. third wave thoughts about national women’s organizations that I alluded to yesterday.

via Feministing

The key, is to reform Feminism, and change the connotation of Feminism as somehow the same as all liberals are idiots who do not understand the real solutions, all Christians must automatically hate gays and push backwards social agendas, and all feminists must be, as Pitts points out, "all anti-men...and ugly".

Let us redefine these terms for a new age. Let us make the needed reforms. Let us make sure their true meanings are not distorted by conservative spin.

True feminism is egalitarianism!

Egalitarianism pertains to all: rich or poor, black or white, male or female, gay or straight, Latino or Asian.

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