Oh, but I was wrong. Dunham’s Your First Time ad was posted on the official Obama for America YouTube channel. Obama donors paid for an ad featuring a young actress who says she “became a woman” after she voted for the president. As a young woman about Dunham’s age, this video made me cringe and sent a chill up my spine.
I was even more horrified when I discovered that the ad echoes a Vladimir Putin campaign video, which roughly translates to Beauty Wishes on First Time, released earlier this year. It depicts a young blonde hair who visits a fortune teller to find the man of her destiny—which turns out to be Putin. She then goes to the polling station to presumably vote for the first time for Putin.
Dunham called her video “light” but the undertones of the ad are sexist and demeaning. Everyone should be appalled that the Obama campaign has sexualized women’s participation in the political process. It’s hard to believe that women are still being objectivized in this day and age.
Dunham’s distasteful ad isn’t likely to appeal to potential young voters. Judging by the fact that the video has accumulated more dislikes than likes, many people are equally disturbed by the sexually suggestive Obama ad. It’s unfair to judge based on the comments since Obama’s YouTube channel moderates comments before they appear below the video.
Perhaps I shouldn’t have been surprised since the Obama campaign’s official Tumblr did approve an e-card that instructed women to “vote like your lady parts depend on it.” That graphic is not cute or creative—it’s beyond insulting to reduce women to the sum of our reproductive organs.
Women should vote with their brains, not what is between our legs.
Julie Borowski is a Policy Analyst at FreedomWorks, an organization dedicated to lower taxes, less government, and more freedom. Her writings on economic policy have appeared in numerous newspapers and online outlets. She is on the Board of Advisors for the Coalition to Reduce Spending and she launched an independent YouTube channel called TokenLibertarianGirl in June 2011.
She was previously selected to be a Charles G. Koch Summer Fellow with the Institute for Humane Studies where she worked at the Center for Competitive Politics. Most recently, she was a government affairs associate at Americans for Tax Reform.
Julie has volunteered for political candidates in Kentucky and in her home state of Maryland. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Frostburg State University in May 2010 where she studied political science, economics and international studies. She is now located in Washington, D.C.