One Way Women Should Not Change How We Think About Power

by Gloria Feldt on June 7th, 2011
in 9 Ways Blog, Carpe the Chaos, Politics and tagged , , , , , , , ,

young anthony weiner

Had you noticed? Today is the 51st anniversary of the U. S. Supreme Court Griswold v Connecticut decision legalizing birth control for married couples under the Constitutional principle of a right to privacy. Nah, probably not.

I was going to write a post about the National Family Planning and Reproductive Health Association’s  (NFPRHA) dandy review of the history.  They’ve also done a new poll showing for the umpteenth time that 98% of Americans use birth control at some time and huge majorities want it included in health care coverage for rich and poor alike. I was going to connect this with the chapter in No Excuses that in a nod to Virginia Woolf, I named “Secure £500 and a Womb of Your Own.”  Because if women are able to earn their own money and own their sexual and reproductive lives, they have power. If they have neither, or only one of the two, they do not have power to determine their own lives.

But figure the odds that anyone is going to pay an iota of attention today to the Griswold anniversary or the new poll that also found voters angry about the Republicans’ attempts to defund Title X family planning services for low income women.  Not when they have Weinergate. Talk about someone who has not just lost but thrown away his privacy!

We haven’t even had time to recover from learning Arnold Schwarzenegger fathered a child with his housekeeper when another politician bites the dust from his own sexual hubris. In the “Everybody Lies About Sex” category, Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) is today’s poster boy.

Pathetic. What else can you say about Anthony Weiner?

Much as I dislike the New York Post, they won the headline competition today with this one: “Erections Have Consequences.

Slate gets honorable mention with its slideshow chronicling all the other bad things that have happened to this former crusading goodie-goodie boy turned hapless penitent.

You have to laugh so you don’t cry when the actions of a politician who eloquently championed women’s reproductive rights and health care, as well as economic policies that help women get a fair shake, gets caught in his own tale (oh I do love a triple entendre).

The power tool for the “£500” chapter is “Carpe the Chaos.” Perhaps Weiner will find opportunity in the chaos he has created to demonstrate true redemption. Whether that must include resigning remains to be seen in how he comports himself in the next few days.

But this is for sure. Such an arrogant assumption of power as slinging one’s penis around on Twitter simply because you think you can do so with impunity is one power tool women should never emulate.

Gloria Feldt

Gloria Feldt is the author of No Excuses: 9 Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power. Buy the book here. Engage Gloria for a Speech or Workshop. Tweet @GloriaFeldt and connect on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+ Gloria is the co-founder (with Amy Litzenberger) of Take the Lead, a new initiative to prepare and propel women to leadership parity by 2025. Find them @takeleadwomen and on Facebook.

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