“You can be anything!” has been the slogan of Barbie dolls for as long as I can remember. Astronaut dolls, veterinarian dolls, teacher dolls…even Presidential candidate dolls. In an effort to inspire young girls to think big and dream big, the message used to be to reach for the sky and just be yourself!
Barbie may still tell this to girls today, but many progressive feminists sure don’t. It seems that according to their current prevailing philosophy, “you can be anything” just doesn’t apply to women who want to be a conservative.
In the wake of this election season’s bitter divisiveness, social media has given rise to a whole new level of stereotyping and intimidation of women: vote-shaming. While it is accepted that we should never ridicule a woman based on her weight (fat-shaming), her parenting skills (mom-shaming), her wardrobe (fashion-shaming), or her diet (food-shaming), it seems that vote-shaming is now in vogue on the Left.
We’ve seen it play out over every social media platform, with countless vitriolic comment threads of and bitter tweets insulting, accusing and shaming women who voted for Republican candidates:
“White women: footsoldiers of the patriarchy”
“...white women are brainwashed and willing participants in their own captivity”
“...educated white women are strong Dems... racism is a helluva drug”
“White women gonna white”
As the demographic numbers rolled in for various races across the country, liberal media pundits, celebrities, and many in the feminist movement took to social media to lambast women who didn’t choose to vote for Democrat candidates. Feigning moral superiority while stereotyping conservative women as racist and uneducated, controlled by their husbands and GOP men, they unleashed their hateful commentary to explain why their candidate failed to win the support of these voters.
Most of the vote-shamers cited only a few races of the thousands on which were voted last Tuesday--namely that of Stacey Abrams versus Brian Kemp in Georgia and Andrew Gillum versus Ron DeSantis in Florida.
Since exit polls in these two contests demonstrated that a higher percentage of white women voted for the Republican (who in these two particular races happened to be white) than the Democrat (who happened to be black), they reasoned that these white women were obviously racist and “unsisterly”.
Of course, they dishonestly chose only the examples that fit their narrative while ignoring contests with minority Republican candidates. The same pundits who are outraged over Republican women voters in Florida and Georgia conveniently fail to mention the Senate race in Michigan, which obviously didn’t fit the “white women who vote for a white candidate over black candidate amounts to racism” storyline. Identity politics is as exhausting as it is damaging to any sort of productive dialogue in our nation.
An honest survey of election results nationwide indicates that people who identify with a certain party tend overwhelmingly to vote for people in that party.
For conservatives like me, it has everything to do with a candidate’s stance on life, liberty and limited government, and nothing to do with what they happen to look like. It’s really that simple. The dishonesty of their knee-jerk “racism” argument seeks to erase the legitimacy of half of all women voters and completely devalues minority candidates who run as a Republican.
The vote-shaming phenomenon perhaps is best summed up by a headline that Vogue magazine posted on their Twitter account last week. Nestled between makeup tips and highlights of a recent underwear fashion show was an article titled:
“Will White Women Voters Ever Be Who We Want Them to Be?”
Welcome to 2018...where women are only equal as long as we are who “they” want us to be.
In other words, shut up and do what you are told.
I guess we shouldn’t be surprised. Publications like Vogue were never intended to empower women to make choices of her own. Their very existence revolves around telling a woman how she should be: what to wear, how to look, where to shop, who to emulate, and now… how to vote.
While trendy fashion magazines have long-profited off the assumption that we women are programmable, single-dimensional creatures, what is startling is the way the trendy, hashtag wing of today’s progressive feminist movement is doing the very same thing.
The post-election meltdown has certainly pulled back the curtain of hypocrisy, exposing a ridiculous irony… that the women who claim to be marching for women’s rights and empowerment are the very ones who want to control what women should think and how they should vote. A choice has to be made--they can’t have it both ways. They can’t demand “sisterhood” and equality yet denigrate and bully women with whom they disagree. They can’t demand that all women be believed, then refuse to believe that women who hold a different viewpoint than theirs (*gasp*) actually believe in their own viewpoint. Truth is, women are only empowered when they think for themselves and aren’t expected to blindly follow March-ing orders.
As we near the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage in this nation, it is truly unfortunate that some women still aren’t free to express their voice--or vote their values--without being labeled and intimidated.
Vote-shaming is the 2018 equivalent of “get back in the kitchen”... that’s how far back it sets our voice in the civic arena. It’s not just shocking, it’s a shameful parody of what was once a noble struggle for the equal rights of women.