“Can someone please tell me what the hell happened?” Michelle Cottle writes in the New Republic.
“This presidential election was supposed to be a high-water mark for feminism. Hillary Clinton entered the primaries as the first female front-runner in our nation’s history. Better still, she wasn’t running as a Woman Candidate. . . . Whether she won or lost — though the widespread assumption was that her victory was inevitable — Hillary’s candidacy was expected to showcase what it means to be a broad-shouldered . . . modern woman,” the writer said.
“Then, amid the snows of Iowa, it all fell apart. To be fair, New Hampshire may be more to blame. Iowa was where Hillary’s inevitability narrative unraveled, but New Hampshire was where she got the idea that redemption lay in the legions of gals who rallied ‘round when the (mostly male) political establishment and punditocracy began salivating at the thought of her imminent demise.
“And, just like that, the strong, proud, fearless, gender-transcendent Hillary morphed into a disrespected, mistreated victim. Grievance feminism came roaring back with a vengeance. ...
“Then, just when you thought it was all over and the recovery could begin, Republicans handed us Sarah Palin.
“The Palin pick is disheartening on so many levels. For starters, even what little we know about the Alaska governor’s policy views is enough to make a traditional feminist weep. The staunchly conservative Palin not only opposes abortion rights (even in cases of rape or incest), she also supports abstinence-only sex education and takes a strict free-market approach toward health care . . ..
“Even setting aside Palin’s political views, the governor’s candidacy is a slap in the face to all women. No matter how feisty she is or how darling she looks with a rifle on her shoulder, Palin is abjectly unqualified to sit one heartbeat away from the presidency.”