WASHINGTON, April 20, 2017 – Chelsea Clinton is pregnant. Some are speculating this will this influence Hillary’s decision to run for President. Why would it? To say that it would is just one brick tucked into the wall of gender sterotyping.
The April 17, 2014 edition of USA Today noted, “It’s unclear how Chelsea’s pregnancy will affect Hillary Clinton, who is considering a race for president in 2016.” Compared to the reporting in Politico, the USA Today line was modest: “The youngest Clinton’s declaration was a politico-obstetric earthquake,” and “Clinton friends and allies were loath to speculate Thursday on whether her family news might affect her thinking on 2016. That would be crass and inappropriate under the circumstances.”
It is interesting that the family status of potential rivals is never mentioned. Joe Biden has five grandchildren and Mitt Romney has over twenty.
But because Hillary is a woman, she will allow an impending grandchild to change her decision to run, or affect her ability to be president.
Chelsea’s pregnancy will have zero effect on Hillary’s decision to run for President. It is news, generated by media and some in the Clinton political world, because it highlights that Hillary is a woman – which in and of itself could, some may fear, be a defect in her ability to lead.
Our sexual differences are always going to generate concern in those who feel threatened by the fairer sex. When it comes to issues surrounding sexual differences, sometimes, all we can do is shake our heads and hope that saner minds will prevail.
Unfortunately that is not likely anytime soon.
In March, a Lynchburg, Virginia Christian School kicked out 8-year-old Sunnie Kahle because she cut off her waist-length hair to donate it to cancer patients. The school claimed classmates could not tell if Sunnie was a boy or a girl.
The school refused to allow Sunnie to return in the fall until “Sunnie, as well as her family clearly understand that God has made her female … and her dress and behavior need to follow suit with her God-ordained identity.”
This is a private Christian school. They are allowed to make rules. Sunnie is not being forced to attend, nor is she prohibited from going to school somewhere else. Nonetheless, the school’s sexualizing of young girls is outrageous.
Blogger Susan Milligan suspects that “what the school is really worried about is Sunnie’s sexuality, that she might be – gasp! – a lesbian if she does not dress like a caricature of a vain, boy-crazy heterosexual girl.”
Last week, a Colorado third-grader, Kamryn Renfro, shaved her head, in compassionate solidarity with a friend who had lost her hair after undergoing chemotherapy. Kamryn’s Colorado school, Caprock Academy, claimed this violated their dress code, and told her to stay home until her hair grew back.
Last year, the Boy Scouts of America finally changed their longstanding ban on admitting homosexual boys from membership. Public pressure and lawsuits can force change.
Recently, musician Robin Thicke was given the title “sexist of the year” by the End Violence Against Women Coalition for the lyrics in his worldwide number one song Blurred Lines. The lyrics offer and promote images of rape. Combined with Thicke’s comments to GQ magazine that “it was a pleasure to degrade a woman in his video” and that he had “never gotten to do that before,” the designation seems appropriate.
Thicke tried to defend himself, to no avail. Samples of lines in the song “I know you want it” and “I’ll give you something big enough to tear your a** in two” make it indefensible. Thicke’s “prize” was a copy of the Aretha Franklin video “R.E.S.P.E.C.T.”
India’s Supreme Court just recognized “transgender” as a “third” gender, giving transgender Indians their own legal status and better legal protections and privileges. The Court said that discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation violates constitutional guarantees of equality, privacy and dignity.
Sex discrimination laws in the United States protect transgender individuals. Gay, lesbian and bisexual individuals are also protected and may bring sex discrimination claims.
Sex discrimination involves treating someone unfavorably because of that person’s sex. It can involve treating some less favorably because of a connection to an organization or group that is generally associated with individuals of a certain sex.
In the workplace, the law prohibits discrimination related to any aspect of employment, hiring, firing, pay, job assignment, promotion, layoff, training, fringe benefits, or any other term or condition of employment.
It is illegal to harass someone because of that person’s sex. Harassment can include “sexual” harassment or unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature. This can be offensive statements or comments about a person’s sex.
The harasser can be either a man or a woman, and the victim can be the same sex as the harasser.
Court cases generally fail when the alleged harassment is found to be simple teasing, offhand comments, or isolated incidents that are not “serious.” Harassment is more commonly found when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment or when it results in an adverse employment decision.
Late last year a New Jersey woman sued the National Basketball Association for herself and two other women, for gender discrimination, claiming the league forced them out of their jobs. Brynn Cohn, a senior account executive of ten years, and a mother with young children, says the NBA changed her hours while she was on pregnancy leave, forcing her upon her return to work long hours into the evenings when there was no valid reason for the late hour work. She says she could not afford the alternative childcare costs, and she was forced to quit.
“This lawsuit lays bare the open hostility to which women with young children are consistently subjected as NBA employees,” said David Sanford, lawyer for Cohn. “In Ms. Cohn’s case, this hostility took the form of discrimination in compensation and promotion opportunities, as well as the adoption of policies at the NBA designed to push out working mothers.”
Go get ‘em Brynn.
Paul A. Samakow is an attorney licensed in Maryland and Virginia, and has been practicing since 1980. He represents injury victims and routinely battles insurance companies and big businesses that will not accept full responsibility for the harms and losses they cause. He can be reached at any time by calling 1-866-SAMAKOW (1-866-726-2569), via email, or through his website.
Mr. Samakow’s “Don’t Text and Drive” campaign, El Textarudo, has become nationally recognized. Please visit the website http://www.textarudo.com and “like” the concept on the Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/textarudo.