Skip to main content

It didn't even take 24 hours. For those who came in late, the process went something like this:

  • NC Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-Derp) makes incredibly tone-deaf, stupid comments at a Republican panel discussion, resulting in a collective facepalm that registered 5.7 on the Richter Scale.
  • Reporter reports on these words (like they do) in a less than flattering way (appropriate... but not flattering)
  • 3...2...1... Ellmers begins screeching "You're twisting my words!  Context!  Liberal Woman Reporter!!".

(Everybody caught up now? Good.)

If you want to read her entire GOPsplanation, you can find it here, but the gist of it was this:

"I am a woman and find it both offensive and sexist to take my words and redefine them to imply that women need to be addressed at a lower level," Ellmers said in the statement.
This confirms, for those of us who weren't sure, that Renee Ellmers does now possess, or has in the past possessed a uterus.  The rest of her commentary, both at the conference and her followup statement, confirms for those (few) of us still in doubt, that Renee Ellmers does need to be addressed at a lower level.  The validity of her projection of that need on women at large, however, remains very much in doubt.

Follow below the orange noodly appendages for more... if you dare!

Apparently the kerfuffle was caused by Washington Examiner commentary writer Ashe Schow citing these pearls of wisdom in her op-ed piece following the conference:

"Men do tend to talk about things on a much higher level. You know, one of the things that has always been one of my frustrations and I speak about this all the time -- many of my male colleagues, when they go to the House floor, you know, they’ve got some pie chart or graph behind them and they’re talking about trillions of dollars and, you know, how the debt is awful and, you know, we all agree with that.

"The biggest need that women have is more time. We all want more time in our lives. More time in the morning to get ready. More time in the evening to spend time with our families. All of these things -- more time to move up that career path. It’s about time. And we have to make sure that women understand that we understand that.

"We need our male colleagues to understand that if you can bring it down to a woman’s level and what everything that she is balancing in her life -- that’s the way to go."

That's not "redefining" or "implying" anything.  That's what you fucking said.  But when she was called out on it -- by one of her own, no less -- she immediately regressed to the Republican playbook: shriek that your words are taken out of context and paste a "liberal" label on the one who dared to challenge you.
"In answering a question regarding how Republicans can improve their messaging, I took the opportunity to note that everyone comes from different backgrounds and experiences -- and our messaging should do the same," Ellmers said. "If there is a problem, who is perpetuating it? Was it a room full of women laughing, bonding and sharing solutions -- or a liberal woman reporter attacking the event and taking it to a dark place that does not exist?"
Actually, it was a binder room full of white, Republican women in a conservative echo chamber1.  That's about as dark (and frightening) a place as I can imagine, and perhaps the only place where remarks like these would not be seen as problematic, offensive and sexist. And such a place does, in fact, very much exist.

As for the "Liberal Woman Reporter", we're talking about Ashe Schow, a commentary writer for The Washington Examiner.  The fucking Washington Examiner!  Psst!  Renee, honey, I don't think they hire liberal reporters there.  Not even if they're men.  But let's say they did.  Let's say they screwed up and accidentally put a Liberal Woman Reporter on their editorial desk.  Perhaps they were fooled by her CV, the highlights of which include (in addition to her job at the Examiner) The Heritage Foundation (Web Editor, August 2012 - June 2013), Heritage Action for America (Deputy Communications Director, May 2011 - August 2012), and Burlington County Republican Committee (Field Representative, 2009 - 2010).  In other words, Schow has been trying to put lipstick on this pig for even longer than you have, Renee. (And to be blunt, she's a lot better at it.)  And she was insulted enough by your "Liberal Woman Reporter" classification of her to write a second column responding to it (with  full transcript and audio!).

But feather-ruffling at the Republican hen party aside, neither Ellmers nor Schow show any indication of understanding the problem, much less a solution.  And neither did the other denizens of the bubble, if this is any indication:

"The problem here is not necessarily conservative policy, it's our messaging," Kim Strassel, a columnist for the Wall Street Journal who was moderating the panel said.
In other words, if we just put the right packaging around it, maybe some color coordinated tulle with a pretty pink bow, then women will suddenly see that Republican policies are just the ticket for them to be happy, reproductive members of society, with all the rights and privileges of every other second-class citizen in our great nation!  

It's not the packaging, it's the fucking package.  And women outside the cozy bubble of Stepford have wised up to that.  And you wanna know something else?  The men that care about them are wising up to it as well (even if we're a bit slower on the uptake).   You and the rest of your conservative posse just might want to consider that having a little extra time to fix your face in the morning does not compensate for a 23% disparity in earnings. Or having the GOP (or your employer) between your legs while they're in the stirrups.  Or having every decision dictated to you because you can't be trusted to make the right one.  Nothing you and your party is offering to women is even remotely worth accepting second-class citizen status for. And that presupposes that your party has fuck all to offer in the first place.  That's not something you can fix with "messaging", because the message is a fucking lie!

But if you really believe that a little lipstick, plastic and paint is a substitute for sound policy, fairness and respect, then all I can offer as advice to you is "Please proceed, Congresswoman."

1 Most of the panelists and guests were members of the Republican Study Committee.

Originally posted to mojo11 on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 07:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by Political Language and Messaging and Feminism, Pro-Feminism, Womanism: Feminist Issues, Ideas, & Activism.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Ugh, there are plenty of men who have to be (8+ / 0-)

    talked down to because they know nothing just like there are some women who are not up on current events and facts.

    Women run the IMF, Germany, the FED and the SEC, just to name a few and many others in tech seem to be pretty able to read pie charts too

    lot of men can't read a chart or graph
    there are PEOPLE who need to have things brought down to a level, and some are women

    ugh

    "The poor can never be made to suffer enough." Jimmy Breslin

    by merrywidow on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 07:08:21 AM PDT

  •  I may be a guy... (13+ / 0-)

    ...but I know quite a few women who are smarter than me. Of course, all of them are Democrats, and they don't want anyone, much less Republicans who want to take their rights away, talking down to them.

  •  Does this dress make me look stupid? (18+ / 0-)

    I live under the bridge to the 21st Century.

    by Crashing Vor on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 07:25:31 AM PDT

  •  Dear GOP (12+ / 0-)

    A package of shit is still a package of shit whether it's in a plain cardboard box, covered by the comic pages of the Sunday newspaper, or wrapped in stamped gold foil with coordinating ribbons and bow. No matter how finely the package is wrapped, when you open it, it still stinks to high heaven.

  •  The face lift and tummy tuck do not cover up (6+ / 0-)

    the soulless monsters that the teapublikkkans are.

    tipped and rec'ed

    I voted Tuesday, May 6, 2014 because it is my right, my responsibility and because my parents moved from Alabama to Ohio to vote. Unfortunately, the republicons want to turn Ohio into Alabama.

    by a2nite on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 07:47:04 AM PDT

  •  Rep. Ellmers should have dumbed-down (5+ / 0-)

    her original comment so that others could understand what she really meant and not take her words out of context. The world would be such a better place if people followed their own advice.

    Snark

  •  And it's worth noting... (3+ / 0-)

    ...that charts and graphs are at least intended to be ways to make lots and lots and lots of numbers more understandable.

    Admittedly, there are lots of ways to lie with charts and graphs (as my mother used to teach her sixth grade students, "there are lies, d**ned lies, and statistics"), but, at root, charts and graphs are ways of getting past the confusion of pages of numbers in order to see the trends.

    If the charts and graphs aren't understandable, maybe the folks presenting them are in fact lying?

  •  I Am Absolutely Devastated . . . (3+ / 0-)

    . . . that I did not write "Self-Proclaimed Woman Renee Ellmers Says More Words." :)

    Oddly enough, there are plenty of women out there who view women with contempt. I suspect Ellmers is one of that sisterhood: The fact that she said "liberal woman reporter" is a giveaway. But it's not just contempt: I ran into some of them when I was much (much) younger, and my life was a train wreck, so I decided to (briefly) join a non-denominational evangelical church. Many of the women I met were smart, funny, generous, and insightful. But they were so grateful to submit themselves entirely to their husbands (single women submitted to the all-male church leadership). They sincerely believed that women are only truly liberated when they are governed by men; that self-determination is a "prison." I sometimes wish I could look up some of my former friends from that church, and see what their lives are like now. This may not be very generous on my part, but I suspect that many of them were eventually divorced from their first husbands, and now view their place in the world quite differently.

    "Fortunately, our handsomest politicians came up with a cheap, last-minute way to combat global warming. We simply drop a giant ice cube into the ocean every now and then. Thus solving the problem once and for all." -- Futurama

    by IamGumby on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 09:16:48 AM PDT

    •  The "Self-Proclaimed" part (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      IamGumby, Calamity Jean

      was really more about the increasing number of Republican women politicians that point out that they can't be misogynists because they're women!  Terry Lynn Land (sp?) was a recent Self-Proclaimer, who went on to spout some of the most anti-women bullshit I've heard recently.  Ellmers felt that she needed to point out that she was a woman before going on to her (nominal) point.

      Conversely, most liberal women I hear make this reference assume that you can discern for yourself and open with "As a woman, I ___".  It's a subtle difference, but telling.

      I'll believe corporations are people when one comes home from Afghanistan in a body bag.

      by mojo11 on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 09:30:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Agreed. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Calamity Jean

        I also found the "liberal woman reporter" suggestive, however. Why the impulse to point out that the reporter was a woman? Ought a woman to know better? Should a woman show more solidarity? Is the reporter representative of anti-woman bias among liberal women? Not that it matters, of course. As Ellmers would no doubt be quick to point out, I'm clearly taking the word "woman" out of context. :)

        "Fortunately, our handsomest politicians came up with a cheap, last-minute way to combat global warming. We simply drop a giant ice cube into the ocean every now and then. Thus solving the problem once and for all." -- Futurama

        by IamGumby on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 09:45:06 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Her comment is horrible (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BlackSheep1

    But I'm pretty sure she wasn't the one who claimed to be a woman. There's no need to question a woman's womanhood - that's demeaning to her. We can disagree with her (very, very strongly) without demeaning her.

    We can also give money to her challenger, the wonderful Clay Aiken, who's running a pretty decent campaign considering it's a deep red district.

    •  Actually (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      IamGumby, Arahahex, anon004, AllanTBG
      "I am a woman and find it both offensive and sexist to take my words and redefine them to imply that women need to be addressed at a lower level," Ellmers said in the statement.
      (Emphasis mine)

      That is precisely what she said. Quoted cut-and-paste verbatim from WRAL.com.  She and others before her have some peculiar need to point this out to us as a preface for some misogynistic spew, as if it somehow legitimizes it.  It does not, and I am going to call her out on it.

      I'll believe corporations are people when one comes home from Afghanistan in a body bag.

      by mojo11 on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 10:50:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  also,mojo11: I'm so stealing that phrase (0+ / 0-)

    it's the cutest thing since "so short in the war I could step off a dime and free fall for a week".

    LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

    by BlackSheep1 on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 09:35:52 AM PDT

  •  ... leading, once again, to the unanswered (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    GreenMother, anon004, Calamity Jean

    question that looms over this entire clownshow: Why would anyone still clinging to sanity ever vote for a Republican?

    •  The only reason (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Calamity Jean

      that voting Republican would benefit you is if you're rich.

      However, there was a fascinating diary on this topic earlier today by mopshell.  Definitely worth a read, if you want to go deeper into the reasoning -- at least from one person's experience.  I thought it was hugely informative and helpful in getting to the root of why some people vote against their own interests over and over again.

      I'll believe corporations are people when one comes home from Afghanistan in a body bag.

      by mojo11 on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 10:59:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  "Self Proclaimed Woman" Hilarious! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    anon004, Calamity Jean, a2nite

    Probably an "alleged Christian" too!

    "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

    by GreenMother on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 10:51:01 AM PDT

    •  Very definitely "alleged Christian" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      GreenMother

      And a supporter of "traditional marriage" and the right to own military grade firepower (and lose it because she left it unsecured in an unlocked garage) also, too.  There was one brief, shining moment when I thought there might be a sliver of hope for her.  In the run-up to the referendum on  Amendment One in 2012, she said that as a voter she would vote against it -- but only because it prohibited civil unions.  Marriage equality was a bridge too far.

      She's a mewling twit, and I really believe that this word salad bar is the best she was capable of. She wants SO. BAD. to be in the club, but she keeps tripping over her own stupid.

      As far as the "self-proclaimed" part goes, she and the other  vapid Republican sorostitutes  need to learn that prefacing your remarks with "I am a woman" does not make you misogyny any more legitimate than a man's.

      Oh you went and got me started again.  I had almost calmed down.

      I'll believe corporations are people when one comes home from Afghanistan in a body bag.

      by mojo11 on Thu Jul 17, 2014 at 05:47:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  you had me at Sorostitutes. (0+ / 0-)

        Now I have to clean the coffee off of my keyboard.

        "It were a thousand times better for the land if all Witches, but especially the blessing Witch, might suffer death." qtd by Ehrenreich & English. For Her Own Good, Two Centuries of Expert's Advice to Women pp 40

        by GreenMother on Fri Jul 18, 2014 at 07:14:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site