1. Shameless exploitation. Looks like Wilhelmina Kids & Teens is the first of that inevitable scramble to exploit young black females who want to be Sasha and Malia. They've begun a casting call for girls who fit the type and who can help them manipulate youngsters into buying dresses, furniture, shoes, purses, and anything else propped next to a young Obama double. It can be tough, though, as CEO Marlene Wallach explains,
“It’s a very specific age and a very specific ethnicity, so there aren’t that many girls that would necessarily fit the bill.”Must be really challenging.
2. Condescending PMS allusions. Huffington Post to Maureen Dowd: Down, Girl!
Rule one for a sexist reporter: When a columnist complains about obscene executive bonuses, and she's female, tell her to 'calm down.' Here's an excerpt from the Huffington Post article, entitled "Maureen Dowd goes Buck Wild on Bankers:"
"Whoa, nelly! The New York Times' Maureen Dowd woke up with an insatiable appetite for the blood of Merrill Lynch redecoration buff John Thain, and has thus come down on "feckless financiers" like the Guns of Navarone."See my Spinspotter marker here. I guess it must be that time of the month for ol' Dowd. Maybe she's less threatening when she sticks to Carrie Bradshaw-esque subjects, rather than taking on potential NY Times sponsors.
Not that the Huffington Post offered a similar admonition to another NY Times article saying basically the same complaints.
3. And general creepiness. Calvin Klein Jeans: no, it's no longer 1981. Let's compare. Remember that raunchy 1981 Brooke Shields commercial for Calvin Klein jeans which caused such a stir? If not, here it is:
Calvin Klein is reviving their jeans television commercial campaign for the first time since then. And it is *rauncy.* Titillating, graphic sex fantasies cloaked under the guise of counter-culture. Blah blah blah.
Yes, I was having a time of it today. But then I saw an inspiring, long-awaited moment: The signing of the Lily Ledbetter bill. I can't put it any better than President Obama:
"Equal pay is by no means just a women's issue - it's a family issue. It's about parents who find themselves with less money for tuition or child care; couples who wind up with less to retire on; households where, when one breadwinner is paid less than she deserves, that's the difference between affording the mortgage - or not; between keeping the heat on, or paying the doctor's bills - or not. And in this economy, when so many folks are already working harder for less and struggling to get by, the last thing they can afford is losing part of each month's paycheck to simple discrimination."You should really see the spontaneous bursts of applause, a beaming Nancy and Hillary (am I the only one who is positively endeared by a beaming Nancy and Hillary? Maybe.), and an utterly overwhelmed Lily Ledbetter for yourself.
Yes, some young intern is going to get fired (it took Obama four different pens to sign the bill because none of them had ink). But that Obama signed this bill into law within his first 9 days of office makes me really happy. And it cracks that glass ceiling, honors a woman's difficult journey for justice, and -- shall we dream? -- perhaps even beats a path to another Oscar-winning Julia Roberts portrayal.