Weinergate – a different perspective Hot Conversation

Whatever the outcome of “Weinergate,” I blame the women.

There, I said it. I’ve listened to the claims that Rep. Weiner is “abusing his power” and “exploiting young women” by firing off crotch shots to college coeds half his age. Interestingly, these charges are coming from conservatives, who usually aren’t quick to join in on feminist pity parties. Whether their concern is sincere or not, I have one thing to say: Give me a break. These women are not being exploited. In fact, way too many of them thrive on this stuff.


Yes, this is an opinion from a Conservative young woman.  It’s also not surprising to me.  I’ve been young and I’ve observed many young women.  Have any of us completely escaped being “intoxicated” by “power and influence” while still young and naïve?  Or, sometimes, even not so young or naïve? ♥

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13 Responses

  1. Debi Drecksler Debi Drecksler says

    I once had a college professor hit on me. He had asked me to meet him on a Saturday morning in his office to go over a paper I had written. I was 17 years old and very naive. I ran out of his office but never reported the incident because I was too afraid. That was 1968…Times have changed!

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  2. watermusic watermusic says

    Wiener did a stupid thing and got caught. That’s not the issue here. 

    When you are in a position of power or authority you are responsible for what happens in that relationship.  

    Times have changed.  I reported sexual harassment and was able to because the climate and culture supported it. I’m not sure that’s true anymore. I see a lot of behavior now that would have resulted in outrage and demand for change then.  I don’t know if it’s apathy as one young woman suggested, or they have different values.  I agree that a lot of them seem to “thrive” on the stuff. However, that simply means that people in authority have a greater responsibility to them. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should. 

    I honestly think we are trying to navigate turbulent times and how to live in an increasingly open world.  What we seem to be doing is trying to find our way. Technology has always had this kind of impact on culture.

    I asked one young woman online who was ‘soliciting’ people to see nude pictures of herself why she was degrading herself. She told me that it was her choice and choice was the point of the  woman’s movement. You could have knocked me over with a feather. I was a big part of that movement and what she was doing was not what we had me mind. It wasn’t was it?  This generation will do stupid and wild things just like ours did and they will find their way. I would like to think they are listening to us but we didn’t listen so why should they? The best we can do is witness to and model the character and the virtues we value. Those are being reexamined in the wake of new technology and what is possible with it.

    When you are a public figure you are held to a higher standard and are more vulnerable to the slings and arrows of public opinions. One of the things that I think is being redefined is the concept of privacy and what it means to be private.

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  3. watermusic watermusic says

    Whatever the outcome of “Weinergate,” I blame the women.”  
    Somethings never change. Here’s concept, let’s not blame women for a change. (sorry for the ramble)

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  4. ThurmanLady ThurmanLady says

    I actually find myself blaming both sides and don’t totally disagree with what’s been said so far (except that I see men being blamed for a lot more things than women most of the time; but that’s my experience).  I recently had a running “argument” on feminism here (I’m not so sure a lot of good came out of it) and just responded to a post a couple of days ago about the 60s.  The same sort of thing applies here (in part):
    …I have trouble relating the 60s with any idea of good coming out of it.  I see the beginning of the disintegration of families… and the downhill slide of sexual responsibility, modesty and a whole host of other things.  I still miss the wholesomeness that came before; not the inability to discuss everything and anything, but the privacy of those discussions.  I wouldn’t go back to a time where we learned nothing about “taboo” subjects, but I would love to see us not having these subjects flashed on the front pages and in prime time advertising.  I actually believe our generation did a lot of harm.
    I will say, with all honesty, that I truly believe that the overdoing of feminism and the rebellion of the 60s did a lot of harm for future generations in some regards. ♥

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    • Generic Image Stevie says

      How does one overdo feminism?  Just curious.

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    • Generic Image Stevie says

      I would have preferred a link to the research, ThurmanLady.  The study involved testing whether women and men endorse sexist beliefs because they are unaware of the prevalence of different types of sexism in their personal lives.  The research article that your fun chicks were ridiculing was about “Seeing the unseen:  attention to daily encounters with sexism as a way to reduce sexist beliefs.”  Other knee-slappers carried in the same issue of the Psychology of Women Quarterly feminist scientific journal include “Coping strategies as moderators of the relation between individual race-related stress and mental health symptoms for African American women” and “Influences of marriage, motherhood, and other life events on Australian women’s employment aspirations.”  The journal also includes book reviews.  Themes include turning oppression into opportunity for women worldwide; creative approaches to understanding self-mutilation; and working with female offenders – a gender-sensitive approach.  Other papers include: “Sexual Violence against Women: Putting Rape Research into Context” and “Hidden, Unacknowledged, Acquaintance and Date Rape:  Looking back, looking forward.”  Is this really your idea of overdoing feminism?  I don’t see any harm in any of the work that’s being done here and I suspect you don’t either.    

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      • ThurmanLady ThurmanLady says

        Stevie, the article made me smile.  It also contained the links to the studies – otherwise, I would have included those too.
        No, not all of the studies out there on problems women are going through are “bad” or wrong.  Many are good.  But, so are the studies on what men are going through.  I think we can overdo feminism by ignoring that.
        This world requires that we live in it with half of it being men.  Shoving women’s problems on the forefront ignores half of the world.  How many articles have you come across about the Domestic Violence problem of women beating men as compared to the opposite?  Or the rights of fathers?  Or the rights of one who is going to be a father but has no power to stop the “mother’s” abortion?  Or even, like the fun article, those who just don’t know the “rules?”
        And, if you don’t think men can be sexually harassed, stalked, raped or any of those same sorts of things you listed, then it’s probably because many studies are biased in favor of feminism and men are stuck with the “big boys don’t cry” label. ♥

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      • Generic Image Stevie says

        I don’t know why you would refer me – a self-proclaimed feminist – to a story whose lead reflected a desire to punch people like me in the face…and expect me to find it funny.
        The story you referred me to did reference the Society for the Psychology of Women but it did not provide a link to the study nor did it provide the title of the study.  The first link provided in the story you referred me to led to the Network of enlightened Women and a brief but straight report on the study; again, no link to the study, no title provided.  The second link led to a MailOnline story which was reasonably straightforward but again, no title, no link to the study.
        Studies on men are good, ThurmanLady, and if you took the time to look for them, you’d find them.  As noted earlier, the study we’re speaking of here was published by the Psychology of Women Quarterly, a feminist scientific journal published on behalf of the Society for the Psychology of Women, Division 35 of the American Psychological Association.  It is unreasonable to expect a feminist journal such as this one to publish studies on what men are going through when that’s not their mandate.  A similar argument can be made for Psychology of Men and Masculinity, a scientific journal published on behalf of the Society for the Psychological Study of Men and Masculinity, Division 51 of the American Psychological Association.  You can find the journal here:  http://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/men/index.aspx I don’t know how many ordinary people like us routinely read scientific journals but I’m pretty sure we don’t make up the bulk of their readership.  Instead, we rely on the press to provide us with stories written about recently published research, stories that the press believes that we would be interested in.  You know as well as I do that women do not control the media.  Women hold fewer than a third of the top news media jobs – http://iwmf.org/pdfs/IWMF-Global-Report.pdf – and as such, it is unlikely that feminism is the driving force behind these stories making it on the pages of the popular press.
        No thinking person would deny that domestic violence against men exists.  If you look, you will find the stories.  Here’s one published in the U.K. last week:  “The invisible domestic violence against men; more women are being convicted of domestic violence but discovering the true number of male victims is a complex affair”  You can find the story here:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/jun/07/feminism-domestic-violence-men   Other related stories readily available online and published this year include:  Male victims of domestic abuse may show signs of PTSD (Health Day News); Murder calls attention to male victims of domestic violence (Fox news); Women’s convictions for domestic violence double (BBC News); More men victims of domestic violence (CTV news); Male victims of intimate violence can experience damaging psychological effects (Science Daily News); Domestic abuse charity to help male victims in Surrey (BBC News) – and many more like this.
        I found far fewer stories on fathers’ rights (other than those published by fathers’ rights groups which are many) but there some:  Father’s Day could shed light on fathers’ rights in Arizona (Phoenix family law news blog June 2011); Dads launch class action against Mumsnet (BBC April 2011); Many fathers struggle to balance work, family: survey (U.S. News June 2011); Children abducted to Japan, fathers left behind (ABC News February 2011); Stop denying fathers their rights (National Post June 2011); No happy Father’s Day for many dads (Edmonton Sun June 2011); Fathers’ rights protestor to burn census form (Hampshire Chronicle May 2011) – not a whole lot.
        I found very few stories in the mainstream press on abortion as it relates to fathers’ rights.  There are a number of blogs, Catholic publications, men’s rights websites and others that carry stories on this topic but not so much in the mainstream news.  Not htat I could find at any rate.
        I don’t know why you would suggest in your last paragraph that I am unaware of the incidence of sexual harassment, stalking and rape as it relates to male victims.  Just because I am a feminist does not mean that I don’t appreciate the harm done to men and boys in our society and I’m sure that you can appreciate that in some cases, particularly as it relates to boys, the harm done is by men.  Big boys do cry, ThurmanLady.  You’d cry too if somebody stole your childhood and hijacked your life. 

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  5. aznikki aznikki says

    You got it TL!  Blame the women and blame the men equally.  The girls didn’t have to look at those pictures did they?  Yes he is a sleazebag but they’re sluts.

    The movement of the 60′s was like a pendulum that swung too far, hopefully, like a pendulum it might swing back some…we’ll see.

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    • Generic Image Stevie says

      Equality at last.  Cool.  Who was with Weiner when he was in that room taking a photo of himself and tweeting it to whomever?  How would the recipients know what was in that tweet before they opened it?  Was the offending photo waiting in plain sight in their inbox (or whatever it’s called) when the recipients signed into their twitter account?  Are all the women who received it sluts (most of whom, I believe, were unintended recipients because Weiner thought he was conveying himself by private tweet when he was actually going public) or only those who looked and responded?  I believe this is the first time in my entire life that I have ever referred to a woman as a slut and I hope it’s the last.
      Can you explain what you mean when you say the movement of the 60s was like a pendulum that swung too far?  In what way did it swing too far?  It was a movement that affected every aspect of my life.  What do I stand to lose if the pendulum swings back some?  Just curious.

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  6. Dallas Lady Dallas Lady says

    I’m with TL and Aznikki.  He is in a position of power and influence; it comes with a higher standard.  Its pretty disgusting.  There is plenty more I could say, but I dont have to–its all already been said about him.

    But yep, the chickies involved are also to blame.  I just dont hold them to a higher standard yet.  When you are young and stupid, you do young and stupid things.  Hopefully you learn from them.  But all too often, you also get famous as a result of your 15 minutes of fame, if you are young/female/attractive.  And all you do is encoruage those around you. 

    And this generation doesn’t seem to care all too much about dignity.  Just about the tabliod coverage.    So you get what you put out there.  Whatever. 

    Blame everyone for their respective parts (ahem, I didnt mean the pun, but I am smirking as I type it.)

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    • watermusic watermusic says

      I’m not letting the women off the hook especially after I saw the interview with the woman from Georgia who is a teacher at a Christian school. She knew he was married but she had no regrets. Really??? She was on the Today Show with 2 lawyers and had nothing to say. All I could think of was tabloid hound.  It makes me want to poke my eye out with a stick.

      As to the issue of overdoing feminism. I had to think about that.  I was part of that movement and the point for some of us was to give women choices and to celebrate women.  After a long conversation with some recent women vets I had to rethink what we did. When I was done it still came down to being able to have choices and that’s a good thing.

      There is no doubt that men get the short end of the stick sometimes but to be a woman or a minority in America is a very different experience than being a man.  Feminism is not about vilifying or ignoring the very real problems of men but it is naive  to  think that the problems women face have gone away.

      I think the pendulum has swung too far too. It bothers me to see so many young women who seem to think the only power and value they have is sexual or through a man in a powerful position.

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