August 8 2011

NOW Stands Up for Women, But Shouldn't Be Surprised by Newsweek's Tactic

Carrie L. Lukas

Julie mentioned NOW's outspoken condemnation of Newsweek's cover featuring Michelle Bachmann. I thought the whole quote of NOW president Terry O'Neil was so good, that it was worth highlighting more:

"Who has ever called a man ‘The King of Rage?' Basically what Newsweek magazine - and this is important, what Newsweek magazine, not a blog, Newsweek magazine - what they are saying of a woman who is a serious contender for President of the United States of America...They are basically casting her as a nut job," O'Neill said. "The ‘Queen of Rage' is something you apply to wrestlers or somebody who is crazy. They didn't even do this to Howard Dean when he had his famous scream."

The Daily Caller's Caroline May explains that NOW is "diametrically opposed to Bachmann on practically every political issue." And O'Neill explains why she's coming to Backmann's defense:

"The main reason why we would stand up for Michele Bachmann and defend her against these kind of misogynistic attacks is we want women to run for office. Of course my job is to defeat Michele Bachmann and I intend to do so. But good women will not run for office if Newsweek magazine can do this to such a prominent politician and get away with it."

I truly appreciate NOW's coming out on this. And I've been pleasantly surprised by how groups like Feministing have properly identified the over-the-top treatment of Gov. Sarah Palin as sexist and inappropriate. Candidates deserve to be considered on their merits.

The only thing I would take issue with is O'Neill's seeming surprise that Newsweek-not just a political blog or fringe paper-would create such a sleazy cover.

This is really no surprise at all. Newsweek is a consistent bastion of liberal bias with a long history of attacking prominent conservatives.  Moreover, given their sinking readership and waning prominence, I'm sure Newsweek has adopted the "any publicity is good publicity" rule of thumb and is hoping this scandal will boost sagging sales.

That said, kudos to NOW for denouncing Newsweek for unfairly attacking one of NOW's political foes.

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