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Katie Couric opens mouth and inserts foot while she's in Israel. Couric:

I find myself in the last bastion of male dominance, and realizing what Hillary Clinton* might have realized not long ago: that sexism in the American society is more common than racism, and certainly more acceptable or forgivable.
I saw the quote on Gawker. A commenter seconded Couric's assesment, adding, as though it were perfectly reasonable:
Based on my own experiences, I'd honestly have to agree with that statement. I'm a Middle Eastern woman living in the sticks of Colorado. I've been the victim of sexism many times, but (believe it or not) have only faced racism once or twice in my life (and that was in high school during those dark 9/11 times). My bf is from Somalia and I know that he's dealt with racism far less than I've dealt with sexism.

It's much more accepted to call a woman a slut, cunt, etc. than it is to call someone a nigger or sand nigger. It's much more accepted to tell a woman she can't do something because she's a woman than it is to tell someone they can't do something because the color of their skin. Most people are outraged when they witness racism, but most people don't even realize (or care) when they see sexist behavior. Sexism is everywhere -- on the TV, in the hip hop lyrics & music videos, in advertisements, in the workplace...

First. Who out there is calling Couric a slut or a cunt? At least, who out there is doing it in a public forum? The sexism that Couric has been subjected over the course of her career isn't the obvious, 'what a bitch' sexism. It's subversive, women-don't-belong-in-the-old-boys-club sexism. I would never deny that it exists. But why is it that sexism can be subtle, but racism is always and only ever the head-clubbing usage of the n-word and 'you people'? My hypothesis is as follows: racism does not exist amongst educated people. Only backwoods, barefoot, outhouse-using, toothless, bathe-once-a-month, cousin-marrying whites are racist. (Or blacks. Blacks are always racist.) The people who continually cite calling someone a nigger as the most prominent example of racism are usually educated, fairly liberal whites, who refuse to acknowledge that maybe, just maybe, racism can be a bit more nuanced than that. These are the people who give arguments like Hillary's and Katie's traction, whilst black women like me sit back and roll their eyes. And that's another thing. I know I've asked this before, but are there no women who are also black? Sexism is everywhere. And it's not just relegated to hip hop music videos. Try watching Desperate Housewives or Cashmere Mafia with your thinking cap on. Those women aren't feminist. They're bonkers. But racism is also everywhere, and just as acceptable. Where are the black main characters? I don't really watch TV anymore, but I remember being excited back in '98 about Joey's sister's black boyfriend on Dawson's Creek. And even my two favorite shows, How I Met Your Mother, and Gossip Girl, both seem to exist in a New York where everyone with a speaking role is tall, thin, and white. And somehow, that's ok. I ask you, how is that not racism? The common answer is, well, these characters wouldn't have black friends anyway, so why try to shoehorn them in? These characters also wouldn't go through 3/4 of the foolishness that happens in any given episode, so are we talking real realism, or are we talking acceptable realism? *Why on earth is Couric taking a public stance on such a powder keg? If she wants to talk about sexism, that's one thing. Sexism is a real issue, and more women should stand up to it. But don't bring up Hillary Clinton, aka Captain Polarization.

2 new thought(s):

the joy said...

*applause* I don't keep tabs on whether I'm more discriminated against as a woman or an African american. The fact that they both occur is enough for me. This white man "whazup"-ed me at work. And a woman assumed that I should flirt with the basketball team that was in-house cuz they were "gonna be paid one day." its not as blatant as it seems, and one is not in competition with the other.

Yellow Rebel said...


There you go again with that common sense, again. Geez, will you stop. Don't you know common sense doesn't work in the real world.

In all seriousness, how would Katie Couric know about racism?