I Call Bullshit: Strippers and Politicians

Alright, two is trend enough for me: what’s with politicians hobnobbing with the most degrading figures of feminine sexuality?

First: John McCain

Um, this is a video of John McCain speaking at this event, in South Dakota that features a topless beauty pageant and mud wrestling.  Excuse me, but that’s fucking unacceptable.  McCain takes a jokey approach to the whole thing, laughing off the treatment of women in such an event as a honor in encouraging his wife to participate.

It wouldn’t be interesting if there wasn’t a double standard: Obama was forced to apologize for a song by Ludacris that was considered sexist (by the by, ever notice that whenever TV news talks about rappers – of ANY kind – they refer to the artist as ‘controversial’?  look for it.), but backlash over McCain participating as an act in an event with open objectification of women has been relatively minor.  The self congratulatory condemnations of Ludacris reeks of a cryptoracist double standard – rappers call women bitches all the time, but when it gets pointed at a white women in power, it’s suddenly controversial.  At the same time, White hypermasculinity and objectification gets a pass.

Second: Closer to home, Marty Markowitz

I mean, as Borough President Marty Markowitz doesn’t really do anything, but the man at least wants to be mayor, and I find this a little unnerving: here’s pictures of the prez hobnobbing with Playboy Playmates down at Coney Island, supposedly for his wife’s sake – but he brought along cameras to serve some purpose other than marital duties I’m sure.

What troubles me is not pornography per se, but the casual disregard for the potential impact shit like Playboy or ‘Miss Buffalo’ in particular might have on people’s lives.  In these case, selective attention to potential harmful gestures towards women not only fails to help anyone, but probably encourages a self-confident swagger on the part of many men that I find very distressing.


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