The hoopla surrounding the Supreme Court’s decision was nothing less than expected. Passions were bound to run high on both sides of the issue. It was expected that some would be celebrating while others would be disappointed. What was shocking and completely inexcusable was a tweet by the Executive Director of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), Patrick Gaspard, just after the decision was announced: “It’s constitutional. bi – – – – es.”
Yet, this comment got nary a word in the media. Contrast that with the media’s complete pillaging (rightly so) of talk show host Rush Limbaugh. On February 29, Rush made his comment about Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown Law student, being a “slut.” Three weeks later, that story still had legs, despite Rush’s apology.
After Rush’s comment about Sandra Fluke, the National Organization for Woman called for Clear Channel to take him off the air. President Obama personally called Sandra Fluke to give her a boost, and White House spokesman Jay Carney called Limbaugh’s remarks “reprehensible and inappropriate.” He added, “It is disappointing those kinds of personal and crude attacks could be leveled against someone like this young law-school student who was simply expressing her opinion on a matter of public policy, and doing so with a great deal of poise.”
Strangely, after Patrick’s tweet, President Obama remained as quiet as a church mouse, especially since Patrick is not just any staffer. He is the executive director of the Democratic National Committee and former Director of the Office of Political Affairs (the same position Karl Rove held in the Bush Administration). According to the DNC’s own website, its purpose is to work to elect Democrats at all levels of government and to help enact the president’s agenda.
And, what about the Democrat women in Congress who were extremely vocal in their reaction to Rush’s comment? Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-New York) said, “If the far right can attack people like Sandra Fluke, women are going to be afraid to speak because they’re going to be called terrible words.” Does she think the same about Patrick’s comment? No one knows for sure, because she hasn’t made any public statements criticizing him.
According to Democrat Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Florida), “Rush called her a slut. A slut. And now I’m sorry, I know he apologized, but forgive me if I doubt his sincerity given that he lost at least six advertisers. And the bottom line is that the leading candidate on the Republican side for president couldn’t even bring himself to call Rush Limbaugh’s comments outrageous and call him out and ask him to apologize.”
Yet her only reaction to Patrick Gaspard’s tweet according to an article in the Washington Times was to tell the reporter to “have a nice day.” Where is the outrage? The silence is deafening! It’s a tad hypocritical that not one of these women leaders in the House has called for Patrick’s resignation yet they demanded Rush be kicked off the airwaves. The so-called “war on women” only exists in these Democrats’ minds when it’s a politically expedient tool to use to bludgeon Republicans.
As women, we cannot condone derogatory remarks like those made by Rush and Patrick from either Republicans or Democrats. It is not wrong to be passionate and to argue zealously for a particular issue. However, insults have no place in the public forum. Women leaders should quickly condemn all offensive statements regardless of whether the messenger is conservative or liberal. By picking and choosing which women can be denigrated, women will never be fully respected, and votes on so-called women’s issues like the Paycheck Fairness Act and the Violence Against Women Act will continue to be coarse jokes in the halls of Congress.