February 2008 Ethics Dunces

New York Chapter of NOW

After Sen. Ted Kennedy's revulsion at "Billary's" attempt to exploit racial divisions in their quest for the Democratic presidential nomination led him to endorse the Clintons' rival, Barack Obama, New York's NOW chapter released this amazing statement:

"Women have just experienced the ultimate betrayal. Senator Kennedy's endorsement of Hillary Clinton's opponent in the Democratic presidential primary campaign has really hit women hard. Women have forgiven Kennedy, stuck up for him, stood by him, hushed the fact that he was late in his support of Title IX, the ERA, the Family Leave and Medical Act to name a few. Women have buried their anger that his support for the compromises in No Child Left Behind and the Medicare bogus drug benefit brought us the passage of these flawed bills. We have thanked him for his ardent support of many civil rights bills, BUT women are always waiting in the wings.

"And now the greatest betrayal! We are repaid with his abandonment! He's picked the new guy over us. He's joined the list of progressive white men who can't or won't handle the prospect of a woman president who is Hillary Clinton (they will of course say they support a woman president, just not "this" one).

Accusing Kennedy of betraying women by endorsing a man for president is just as unfair, bigoted, offensive and wrong as saying he betrayed his race by endorsing a black man. Having two X chromosomes, by itself, is no more relevant qualification than having lovely hair (John Edwards), having African ancestors (Obama), being a Mormon (Romney) or being born with webbed feet (Guliani…okay, not really, but it wouldn't matter if he was.) Kennedy's duty, like all Americans, is to support the candidate he believes will make the best president for the nation, not the person who has the physical characteristics that some advocacy group believes should trump honesty, ability, and character. Senator Kennedy has never demonstrated any lack of appreciation of women. If he chose a man over Hillary Clinton to support for president, it is more than likely that he based his decision on factors other than gender.

If New York NOW really can't imagine what these might be, they are welcome to contact The Ethics Scoreboard.




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