Thursday, October 23, 2014

Throwback Thursday: A Deep Dive Into Old Posts

I know that Throwback Thursday is supposed to be for pictures, but I decided to kick things up a notch. Lately I have been going back and reading some older blog posts of mine. I am coming up on my three year blogging anniversary, which barely even seems possible, and yet it is. Over that time, I have written and published almost five hundred posts, which also doesn't seen possible, and yet there they are, right in the archives on the side-bar of my blog.

In going back through some of these old posts I had mixed reactions. Some of them leaned more towards the "oh my god how could I ever have pressed publish on this horror show" side of things, while with other ones I was all "damn girl, you can write." Anyone who blogs on the regular will understand well these dueling reactions.

Every now and then I stumbled upon a post that I completely forgot I had written, and I thought that maybe it was time to give those forgotten ones another chance to shine. So for the next couple of weeks, every Thursday I am going to re-post some of those oldies because, why not?

Today's Throwback Thursday post was published exactly at this time of year in 2012. A presidential election was looming on the horizon and since everything that could possibly be written about was already out there somewhere, the news organizations were casting about for something new to write about that was a little more interesting than more words about Romney's hidden bank accounts or Obama's birth certificate. 

CNN won the game that day when someone who I can only imagine was either drunk or high at the time published an editorial about the way that a woman's menstrual cycle effects her likelihood of voting Democrat or Republican. The responses to the article were immediate and scathing and predictably, CNN removed the editorial from their website, but the damage had already been done.

With mid-term elections less than 2 weeks away, I thought this would be a good one to share today because two years later when it comes to equality and respect for women in this country we are still nowhere, and it looks like we have a ways to go before we get to somewhere.


Beware of the Female Vote

In the current presidential election, much has been said about the female vote. What it means, who will get it, and how important it is. The candidates have spent millions of dollars courting women voters. At both the Republican and Democratic national conventions the candidates' wives stood before crowded convention floors and spoke about their most important roles: mothers. The candidates themselves spent much time in speeches discussing their own mothers, and praising their wives for the raising of the children. All of this, ostensibly, was to appeal to women across the country watching on TV. To me, it seemed a little like pandering, but political experts say that it works, so what do I know?

Well, according to a recent CNN editorial, it may all be for naught. 

Yesterday, CNN posted an editorial on its website discussing a "scientific" study that suggested that women's votes are influenced by their hormones, and they are more likely to vote for a certain candidate depending on what time of the month it is.

When I managed to get my raging hormones under control long enough to pull my face out of the Ben & Jerry's and read the study, here is what I learned:

Researchers discovered that during a woman's most fertile time of the month (i.e. when estrogen levels are at their highest), single women were more likely to vote for Obama, whereas committed women (i.e. women in relationships, not women who are actually committed, although with all of those hormones racing, who knows?) were more likely to vote for Romney.

The researcher behind this study, Kristina Durante from the University of Texas (a woman, God help us, so, depending on her time of the month when she wrote this study, maybe we can't really trust the information at all), explained that when single women are ovulating, they feel "sexier," and therefore lean more towards liberal views on issues such as abortion, contraception, and marriage equality. However, married women tend to take the opposite viewpoint because they are overcompensating for those pesky hormones that are telling them to have sex with other men. Basically, married, ovulating women will vote for Romney as a way of "convincing themselves that they're not the type to give in to such sexual urges." 

So Romney, you may want to start that matchmaking service right away to get women married before election day. But please, for the love of all that is holy, make sure those women are marrying men. Because if they marry other women, that household will have DOUBLE the hormones coursing about. The horror.

And Obama, turns out that you might want to dial it down on the "let everyone marry, marriage equality" shtick - because married ladies are so less likely to vote for you. 

I mean, I'm married, and I'm surprised that I can even find my WAY to the voting booth when it's that time of the month, much less make an educated decision about a candidate. Because really, all I want to be doing is sitting on the couch in sweatpants, up to my neck in french fries and chocolate, sobbing big fat tears as I watch The Notebook over and over again.

It's pure insanity that women are able to own property, walk the streets unaccompanied, and work for a living amid these raging hormones, much less pull a lever to choose the leader of the free world. 

Look, I get that the debates are over, and election day is just over the horizon, and the cable news networks are running out of things to talk about. But honestly, CNN, can't you do better than this? 

The backlash to this article was instantaneous, prompting CNN to remove the article from its website, stating that "some elements of the story did not meet the editorial standards of CNN." And the author of the story has taken to Twitter to defend herself, tweeting that she "was reporting on a study to be published in a peer-review journal and included skepticism in the story," and that she "did not conduct the study." Great. That's kind of like Todd Akin coming forward now to say he was just explaining the studies that have been conducted regarding pregnancy and rape, but doesn't really believe them.

Any multitude of things can influence the outcome of an election. The weather. Those pesky undecided voters. Spray tans. Debate performance. Hidden videos at $50,000 a plate fundraisersCollege transcripts and passport records. Men.

And oh yeah, what about the men?

My biggest problem here, and the biggest problem of the many thousands of furious people who have commented on this CNN story, is the idea that women are emotional, fire-breathing lunatics whereas men are beacons of non-hormonal stability. I can't help but disagree. I mean, have you ever watched a presidential debate? Or been to a football game? Or seen a commercial? 

No, men certainly have never let hormonal surges influence their decision-making. It is just us estrogen-laden women whose lady-parts run on overdrive when faced with such disparate choices during our time of the month that can't seem to make up our minds in an educated fashion.

It must be true. The science says so.

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