In the Mix

April 5, 2013

Politically Correct

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Written for: Communicado Magazine
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WTF. So President Obama had to apologize for making a compliment. WTF! In a speech at a Democratic fundraising event recently, the President said this of California Attorney General Kamala Harris: “She is brilliant and she is dedicated and she is tough… She also happens to be by far the best-looking attorney general in the country.”

Really? The quote started with several references to her work-ethic and ability. How does making an observation thereafter about something that’s obvious make her brilliance and dedication irrelevant? And what woman do you know that doesn’t want to be called, “good-looking?” In any reference!

I’m a man and I’d be happy to have anybody refer to me as good-looking… with or without the references to my brilliance and dedication. It’s a compliment dammit!

Of note – Several news outlets have pointed out that President Obama regularly refers to members of his team as good looking. They rolled tape on it. These are men and nobody has said a word. Now he’s a letch because he’s said a woman is good-looking? At least his exact words were consistent from men to women. He could have said a lot worse… think about it…

In Israel recently, he referred to Benjamin Netanyahu’s son’s as good-looking young men. Are we ready to call him a pedophile over that? This is insane…

If you don’t like President Obama, that’s fine. But, let’s keep the criticisms to policy.

I get women being pissed off when they’re referred to as the, “Pretty little lady,” or even as a “Gal,” when the reference is not preceded or followed by several notations to their, “Brilliance and dedication.” That’s insensitive and sexist. This was not.

Be pissed off when Rush Limbaugh calls an innocent Georgetown student who supports abortion a slut…

Be pissed off when a Congressman calls Mexican migrant workers wetbacks…

Be pissed off when super rich dudes disparage 47% of Americans as dependent on government assistance and moochers…

These are comments to be pissed off about. A compliment for a woman who is obviously beautiful and a long-time friend of the President is not a reason to be pissed off.

In fact, If I were Kamala Harris, I would have issued a statement that sounded something like this:

“President Obama and I have been friends for many years and I value his opinion not only as a professional and the leader of our great nation, but also as a great person. It is in that spirit that I do not accept his apology, but, issue a big thank you to him for the breadth of his generous comments.”

Some of this is paranoia. Some of it is insecurity. A woman should be able to be smart and beautiful and she should be told so without either being more important than the other. I for one am not willing to let a comment about being good-looking dismiss two comments about being surely capable.

So people, if you think someone is the total package – tell them… and don’t apologize for it!!!