by Erin Kotecki Vest: Cross-posted from Queen of Spain blog.
Oh wait, I’m sorry…they call us ‘leftists’ now.
Longtime Republican and actress Stacey Dash tweeted her support for Gov. Mitt Romney this week and was, as is sadly typical of the internet, viciously attacked for her comments. She was called every name in the book from a ‘house negro’ to an ‘Uncle Tom’ and had her fair share of equally disgusting sexist barbs tossed her way as well. Things even went so far as a death threat (of sorts), something I am all too familiar with in my own online life.
Typically women’s groups rallied to her defense. Now, when I say women’s groups I mean ‘traditionally liberal, feminist’ women’s groups. Because that is what they do. Some would even say that is their ENTIRE PURPOSE- to point out sexism and racism and horrible, vile attacks on women so they can be exposed and, hopefully, STOPPED.
Even Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown law student also attacked for her political views,tweeted her support for Dash.
Now I’m going to write some things that are certainly not going to win me any popularity points with the Right…but I no longer care. I’m disgusted at their behavior and disgusted at their bandwagon care for women.
Yes, I said ‘bandwagon care for women.’
You see, the internet exploded with conservatives voicing their support for Dash…and rightfully so. The internet exploded with liberals ALSO voicing their support for Dash…and rightfully so. What never happens, ever, is when a liberal woman is attacked does the internet explode with both sides showing their support for the liberal woman.
As far as the Right is concerned, liberal women get what they deserve. Be it attacks of the most vile nature, be it relentless sexist, racist, homophobic slurs. Be it death threats against these women or their children.
Liberal women, as evidenced by the lack of support from the Right, are not worth defending and apparently should be left for dead.
The Right is silent when the same types of attacks are launched at liberal women. And when NOT silent, they join in on these attacks.
Yet when a Right leaning woman is attacked, all hell breaks loose and suddenly they are all feminists. Staunch Republicans are shocked and beside themselves that this sort of vile behavior happens online. They rally support for the victim and blame every liberal for the attack.
Now, we all know there are lunatics online. We all know there are trolls. And make NO mistake- the people attacking Dash are lunatics and trolls. They are NOT surrogates of the campaign. They are NOT pundits. They are NOT television hosts, radio hosts, or even prominent bloggers. They are NOT elected officials. They are lunatics and TROLLS.
That does not make the attacks any less vile or sick.
But let’s compare that to attacks on liberal woman. Attacks that HAVE come from surrogates of campaigns, pundits, television hosts, radio hosts, prominent bloggers, elected officials and yes, lunatics and trolls.
I am exhausted by all of this. I am exhausted that I can work 24/7 to combat sexism online against women of ALL political parties and have bi-partisan support when a Republican woman is attacked, yet have ONLY progressive support when a liberal woman is attacked.
I am exhausted that when I tell the story of getting death threats online, of my children being threatened…their blood threatened to be splattered across their school playground…I am told by a right-wing Fox News pundit to go play my violin. Yet that SAME right-wing Fox News pundit is now championing the defense of Dash and the vile attacks against her.
Tell me, if my daughter acts like a good little lady, all GOP’d out and nice…will she then be defended if attacked?
But if she goes ‘leftist’ like her mother, will she be ignored and will the Right pile on?
This is not a political game. This is not how we score political points…off the backs of women who are risking their lives and the lives of their children to speak out and speak up. Women who believe so fiercely in making the world a better place that, like Dash and like myself, we stand up to those attacking and keep speaking out and speaking up.
All while the Right uses it only as an opportunity. Because that is clearly the ONLY thing they are about-opportunities. They do not truly care about women or children. They care about winning and scoring points. As evidence by what they do when faced with one of their own under attack and someone who’s not one of their own under similar attacks.
They are nothing more than opportunistic vultures doing what politicians have done since the beginning of time: whore their own for power, no matter what the cost. Sacrificing the women and children first and showing, time and time again, they really do not care about them at all…only using them as a means to the end.
Meanwhile, the rest of us will be fighting for those women. Yes, even the ones on the Right. Because we actually walk the walk and BELIEVE in equality and BELIEVE all women should be defended when attacked, not just the ones who declare their vote for Romney.
We also believe in our President, with two daughters of his own, who has a record on women’s issues that shows he too walks the walk.
So let the lip service to Romney, Dash, and their fake concern for women on the Right continue. The rest of us will be here…still…doing the real work behind the scenes. Again. And again. And again.