Friday, January 18, 2008


In Defense of Chris Matthews

Crablaw had a Chris Matthews posting earlier this week: Sara Robinson of Group News Blog: Chris Matthews is a Misogynist Loser

…where he noted:

“I know that the good Conservatarian, to whom warm greetings and wishes for a Happy New Year, is reluctant to criticize a fellow Holy Cross grad, but I too had a Jesuit education and nothing in that education taught me to invade a female's space.”

Fair enough – my unwillingness to publicly criticize fellow ‘Saders is my practice of identity politics and one I’ve acknowledged. That said; I really don’t know what the big deal is – since Senator Clinton isn’t the one who made a big deal about it, I’m not sure why this is anyone else’s concern…except for the unfortunate tendency of many toward victimization at every opportunity. The video seems to show the Senator embracing Mr. Matthews...which kind of implies consent...which as Gloria Steinem famously said was a good defense in these matters (well, it was if your name is Bill Clinton).

The Washington Post has an article today which further explores the “trouble” Mr. Matthews is in with some out there because of his reactions to Ms. Clinton: Chris Matthews Backs Off 'Nasty' Remark on Clinton

“On last night's program, Matthews defended the substance of his remarks that Clinton's political career in New York was launched because of public sympathy stemming from her husband's much-investigated affair with Monica Lewinsky. But, he said, "was it fair to imply that Hillary's whole career depended on being a victim of an unfaithful husband? No. And that's what it sounded like I was saying."

Unfortunately, as a liberal on a perceived liberal network, Mr. Matthews has to be concerned with the stated opinions of such ideologues as Kim Gandy and Gloria Steinem. But you’d have to a moron to realistically think that he meant that Senator Clinton’s whole career was based on her being a wronged woman. Obviously she has her legal career and now political experience for added substance. Yet the gist of the remark is true even if it’s ultimately irrelevant. Most women (or men) wouldn’t or couldn’t have pulled off a similar subsequent rise in stature…so kudos to her for taking advantage of the situation to her ultimate advantage. In other words, the correct response to such observations by Chris Matthews (and others) is:

“So what?”

…and from my recollection of that time, coverage of the Monica Lewinsky affair is also what put Chris Matthews on the map.

Chris Matthews is a misogynist bigot. He does have a disdain for women and gay women too. He reminds me of Andy Harris's bigotry.
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