Newsweek, Michele Bachmann and Sexism

So, was the recent Newsweek cover featuring Michele Bachmann sexist as Jessica Grose of Slate contends? Did Newsweek go too far as Tierney Sneed of U.S. News & World Report asks?

Michele Bachmann

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann on this week's cover of Newsweek via U.S. News & World Report

They, and some outraged conservatives, may have a point in asking questions about such an unflattering portrait. After all, as Grose points out in her piece, there does seem to be a steady stream of flattering images on the cover representing even some of the wackiest, fringe-iest politically conservative personalities shown in a much better light (in terms of physical appearance at least) on Newsweek’s covers.

Gov. Rick Perry on Newsweek cover

The cowboy boots say "manly". The hunched over posture says back problems.

Considering the weird, sexualized Newsweek cover featuring Sarah Palin, it’s not much of a stretch to believe perhaps that Newsweek might be taking extra swipes at conservative women (regardless of the heavy-handed sexualization of Sarah Palin by many conservative men). It’s still seemingly true that women in politics face dealing with the aesthetic appeal of their appearance whether it be Sarah Palin’s “attractiveness”, Michele Bachmann’s non-Palin-esque features or Hillary Clinton’s pant suits. It really is long past time that there is a level playing field for what the media will portray about any candidate regardless of race or gender.

However, I certainly don’t mind satirizing her ideas and actions as those are completely fair game.

Also, to be completely fair-er, it’s not like the Congresswoman avoids showing off that thousand-yard stare frequently herself.

Congresswoman Michele Bachmann

I can see through time itself!!!

Sure, she’s into some rather fundamentalist views on marriage, women’s roles, homosexuality and the role of religion in governing, and there is a sense of hypocrisy coming from the supporters of the Congresswoman when it comes to speaking out about gender politics on the cover of a magazine. However, in terms of news, her ideas and her actions are all that should matter, and the same goes for any other candidate be they Rick Perry or Mitt Romney.

Mitt Romney

Aw geez (via the Huffington Post)



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2 Responses to Newsweek, Michele Bachmann and Sexism

  1. Ben Hoffman says:

    These people are totally insane. To represent them as anything else is showing bias.

    • Mike Nam says:

      Well, I can’t argue that. I suppose my issue is how Newsweek is willing to make Rick “Pray for Rain/Secessionist” Perry or Mike Huckabee with his soft-sell Christian dominionism look good on their covers as compared to Michele Bachmann or Sarah Palin.

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