Women Wonder: What if Mayor Filner sexted us and Weiner Frenched us? Would that be better?
Today every woman in my Zumba group agreed we would die if our mayor, Bob Filner, stuck his tongue down our throats. As a Democrat, nothing makes me madder than Democrats behaving badly. My opinion of Weiner the-wienie-waver? I‘ve never sexted but certainly wouldn’t do it with a stranger, especially one who called himself Carlos Danger. How can you say that name without laughing? Wasn’t the name Weiner funny enough? – Especially when you’re sending photos of same? Carlos Danger, the world’s most in-teresting dick.
Before they had a word for sexual harassment at work, my generation of women called it “having a job.” By today’s standards, I‘ve been harassed on almost every job I’ve ever had. In the sixties, being harassed was the price a woman paid for the privilege of being one of the boys (though paid less). We trained ourselves to ignore the silly little men and their pathetic attempts at flirtation.
Filner’s excuse for his behavior is: he’s from the Mad Men generation where harassing women was a time-honored business activity. Oh, yes, I remember it well. Women had to be good sports or we’d be out of a job. An occasional swat on the butt? Fine. Rubbing my shoulders? No big deal. Telling an occasional dirty joke? No big whoop. Forced Frenching? NOT OKAY! Never was and still isn’t!
I remember the first time the subject of harassment hit the news. At first no one was sure know how to pronounce harassment. Was the accent on the ha or the ass? It was during the hearings for Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas.
Anita Hill, an attorney and former Thomas underling (at the EEOC, ironically) came forward and accused Thomas of harassment. She was forced to recount the most embarrassing details of Thomas' crude and dumb improprieties...live and on television. Not one woman in America doubted Hill’s story. It was obvious this refined and serious woman didn’t dream up something about “a pubic hair on a coke can.” Or a porno movie called “Long Dong Silver.” Thomas was obviously guilty (as far as women were concerned).
The entire country was glued to the hearings. Men couldn’t believe or understand why Hill didn’t quit. Women couldn’t understand why men couldn’t understand why a woman would just ignore the harassment. It was a way of life for working women! More than a few couples broke up arguing over the subject.
Besides Anita Hill, there were five other women waiting in the wings to testify against Thomas, but they weren’t allowed. If the five other women had testified, would Thomas be a justice on the Supreme Court today? Would a man who obviously knew he was breaking the rules be rewarded with a lifetime job interpreting the constitution?