In a blog post this Monday, state Representative Betty Sutton (Ohio-D) wrote about an appalling flier sent by the Republican Party to one of her constituents. The flier stated "Let's take Betty Sutton out of the House and put her back in the kitchen."
According to Rep. Sutton, the mailer, which was sent to 15,000 households and "was supported by funds from a Republican multimillionaire challenger by the name of Tom Ganley who has decided he wants to take [her] place in Congress." And the Chair of the Medina County Republican Party, Bill Heck, "didn't think there was anything particularly wrong with it."
As disturbing as this is, it's not the first time the Republican party has demonstrated its opinion of women. Just look at Senator John McCain's choice for his running mate back in 2008. He chose Sarah Palin, and this was no accident. She represented two very obvious things: she was attractive and conservative. In every possible way. As happy as some of us were to hear that she was a feminist, it was soon revealed she was a member of Feminists for Life, a radical, anti-choice organization. So much for that.
According to the Washington Post, Senator Barbara Boxer further questioned why McCain did not simply choose one of his fellow Senate colleagues, "Senator McCain had so many other options if he wanted to put a woman on his ticket, such as Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson (Texas- R) or Senator Olympia Snowe (Maine-R) - they would have been an appropriate choice compared to this dangerous choice. The only similarity between her and Hillary Clinton is that they are both women. On the issues, they could not be further apart."
Senator Boxer, you made a great point. Sadly, this was a clear moment where McCain presented us with the Republican party's mindset about women's thought processes: put a pretty yet seemingly folksy woman on the VP ticket, and women will simply flock to her? Did the GOP think women would see her as "all they wish to be?" Hmm...guess not.
As another Huffington Post blogger put it back in 2008, "just because Sarah Palin is a woman doesn't mean she's good for women." I'm glad to say, women realized that, and as much as Palin likes to hang out around the White House (making much more money on her speaking tours than she ever did as governor), she is not in it.
And Rep. Sutton isn't taking the GOP's latest sexist statement lying down...or standing around, be it in the House, the kitchen, or any other location where these ignorant Republicans hope to send her. As part of her post, she has included a petition for signatures of anyone who is outraged by this flier. She explains, "We have set a goal to send 15,000 signatures calling on Republican candidate Tom Ganley to unequivocally denounce the comment immediately, and for Medina County Republican Party Chairman Bill Heck, who continues to defend the belittling comment, to step down.
One person commenting on the post suggested, "Why do we want his GOP colleagues to denounce it -- or him? Let them all stand by it. Let them exclaim loud and clear who they are and what they stand for. Then, let the voters denounce them in November." Not a bad idea.
We should never forget the power of the vote. These people represent us and what we stand for. Let's take these men out of the position of authority and into a reality they've ignored for too long: the 21st century.
Photo credit: thinkprogress.org