Dear Commons Communty,
New York Times columnist, Nicholas Kristof raises the question today about whether there is a double standard for women in politics. He reviews a number of situations that have arisen in the current presidential campaign and reverses the roles of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Here is a sample of his “Imagines ifs”:
Imagine if 15 men had accused Clinton of assaulting or violating them, with more stepping forward each day.
Imagine if Clinton had held a Mr. Teen USA pageant and then marched unannounced into the changing area to ogle the young bodies as some were naked and, after doing the same thing at a Mr. USA pageant, marveled on a radio show at what she was allowed to get away with.
Imagine if Clinton had less experience in government or the military than any person who has ever become president?
Imagine if she had said about a man running against her in the primaries, “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that?”
Imagine if it were Clinton who had boasted, “I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.”
Imagine if it were Clinton who had been caught on a hot mike referring in a degrading way to men’s genitals and boasting that her prominence gave her license to grab men’s crotches.
Imagine if she had bragged about her attempts to commit adultery — and later reportedly sought to have fired from his job the married man who resisted her seduction efforts.
Imagine that it were Hillary Clinton who had been accused of assault by her first spouse (later recanted) and later of assault in a lawsuit by a business partner.
Imagine if Clinton had defended herself from an accusation of molesting a young man by explaining, “He would not be my first choice, that I can tell you.”
Imagine if Clinton had body shamed Donald Trump, saying that she had observed his rear end and concluded, “I’m not impressed, believe me.”
The list goes on and Kristoph concludes asking the reader deciding whether there is a double standard in American politics, indeed in American society, subjecting women to greater scrutiny?
Indeed there is!