It's Time to Start Taking Hillary Seriously

She's still trivialized as she fights to empower women
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Aug 13, 2009 8:55 AM CDT
US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, center, gestures as she is greeted by patients and staff of the Heal Africa clinic in Goma, Congo Tuesday, Aug. 11, 2009.   (AP Photo/Roberto Schmidt, Pool)
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(Newser) – Hillary Clinton’s trip to Congo was meant to help fulfill a promise to focus on women’s issues, but it seems to have turned on one woman's issues. Though “there could have been no more dramatic setting,” writes Judith Warner in the New York Times, “back home, all anyone could talk about was Bill.” The secretary of State faces a “tide of trivialization” as she fights for women and we chatter about her “marriage, her temperament, even her hair.”

Work in Congress may soon begin to improve women’s standing, but Warner thinks “a peculiarly gendered form of trivializing scorn still tags our secretary of State." Recently, the Washington Post had to dump a video combining “Clinton’s face with a bottle of derogatorily named beer.” Empowering women will be a slow process, but maybe people will pay attention—“if we stop viewing everything Clinton does as entertainment.”