Bitch vs. Ditz: '08 Campaign Was a Setback for Women

Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton delivered major blows to feminism, gender equality
By Rebecca Smith Hurd,  Newser User
Posted Nov 17, 2008 11:21 AM CST
Bitch vs. Ditz: '08 Campaign Was a Setback for Women
Sarah Palin listens as Sen. John McCain delivers remarks during the opening plenary at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting Thursday, Sept 25, 2008, in New York.   (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

Hillary Clinton and Sarah Palin shattered the glass ceiling in politics, but the broken shards sharply undercut the feminist movement. “In the grand Passion play that was this election, both Clinton and Palin came to represent—and, at times, reinforce—two of the most pernicious stereotypes that are applied to women: the bitch and the ditz,” Amanda Fortini writes in New York.

"By stepping into the spotlight unprepared, Palin reinforced some of the most damaging and sexist ideas of all," writes Fortini. Before Palin’s nomination, 7 in 10 Americans thought men and women could lead effectively. Exit polls later showed 6 in 10 voters thought Palin was unqualified to step in for John McCain. “I can’t help but think that our historic step forward was followed by more than a few in the opposite direction,” Fortini says.
(Read more gender bias stories.)

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