Glamour magazine has named Caitlin Jenner one of its "Women of the Year." And I call bullshit.
I hardly know where to begin in this clusternut of ridiculousness.
I suppose we could start where many women are all agog: that by putting a transgender woman on the pedestal, one who has lived her entire life publicly and outwardly as a man until, oh, say, April of this very year, one may be suggesting that the ideal woman is actually a man. That they could be even better at being women than a woman.
In no way would I suggest that the struggle transgender people face isn't real. But let's face it. She was living as a man, not a woman, until six months ago. A woman in hiding as a man, perhaps, but as far as the universe is concerned, she was a he, and treated with all the benefits that come along with being a rich white man for the better part of 65 years.
So you have to kind of admit that there's some basis to their complaint. But let's put all that to one side and make it not an issue, just for a moment.
After all, the whole idea of woman of the year is that this person is an upstanding bastion of womanhood (or apparently at least an upstanding human being). A role model for women on how to achieve and behave...
Indeed, let's look at what Jenner has done this year for humanity. This year, she went on the Ellen DeGeneres show and said she was a 'traditionalist' on the subject of marriage. So clearly she's not a great voice for the women in the LGBTQ. This year, she was in a wreck that killed a woman (and to be fair, though they were originally going to bring her up on manslaughter charges, they've since dropped them). Sure, she has done a great deal to promote the actual subject of being transgender, despite strong criticism from some that she's marginalizing them even further, but there's a lot of people who say when it comes to her standing for any sort women's issues, it's more apples and oranges.
Here's the thing: you can be a feminist, Cait. I don't mind male or formerly male feminists at all. When men speak in defense of women's rights, the unfortunate truth is that (like with white privilege when dealing with racial issues) the man's voice in support of us speaks louder than our voices speak alone. But while you may be a woman inside, let's be honest here for a minute. You've never had to worry about the concerns that weigh on most women's minds. Things like someone controlling your reproductive rights. You've never worried about pay gap. You've never had to deal with someone questioning your ability to have a career and be a mother. I don't mind you speaking out. But do you and I really speak from the same place?
Other than coming out as a woman, what have you done, Cait? How are you somehow more woman of the year material than women who have worked overseas fighting Ebola, fought cancers, who have stood up for women's rights, or achieved remarkable things? How can you be ahead of Supreme Court Justices like RBG or maybe a soon-to-be first woman President? How can you be ahead of just about any woman who has been a woman for more than a year?
Sorry Glamour, but I don't think Caitlyn Jenner should be a Woman of the Year. Are we really so hard up for a candidate that your top choice is someone who spent the first four months of the year as a man?
To put it plainly, it's bullshit. Maybe next time you should do some research instead of watching a K-dash marathon.
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