Poor, pitiful Teresa Heinz Kerry, or so Melissa Henneberger laments.
But now that I see that the end of the campaign is not the end of the Teresa trashing—Darn right it isn't.
with some commentators all but blaming her outright for her husband’s loss—I have to wonder whether even a moderate amount of woman isn’t too much for America.No, one is not. America does, however, appreciate a woman who doesn’t call those who don’t agree with her husband’s views (whatever they may be) “idiots.”
(I assume, for the record, that Laura Bush is a lot of woman, too, though she’d never let us see that, apparently with good reason.)Mrs. Bush knows that she isn’t the POTUS, nor was she running for the position. Mrs. Bush also has enough class to brush off insults to her person, like the one from this same Mrs. Heinz Kerry. Showing self-control is a characteristic of “a-lot-of-woman.” It’s certainly far more difficult than telling a reporter who asks an honest question to “shove it.” (And don’t I know it.)
President Hillary? We’re not even ready for a First Lady who deviates from the script—or, heaven forfend, has a little bit of a mouth on her.The thing is that a *president* is expected to expound on things presidential. A *first lady* (or a prospective first husband) isn’t the president. A married couple aren’t composed of the same two people, in spite of the Clintonian concept of a co-presidency. Were I married to a surgeon, not being a doctor myself, I seriously doubt that I would be allowed to sub for him in surgery. Just a hunch.
Yet in the main, Heinz Kerry’s remarks were only shocking in contrast to the overprocessed and infantilizing blah-blah that characterize most political speech.See the “shove it” incident.
By the end of the campaign, her approval ratings were in the range normally reserved for the defrocked and the deposed. And why is that? Does America really hate women that much?How did Teresa Heinz Kerry magically morph into representing all women in America? My mother is only a few years younger than Heinz Kerry. She tough, smart and speaks her mind, but one thing she never is: rude (unlike me.) (Mom also doesn’t suck on gin-soaked raisins.) THK didn’t catch it because she’s some flocking symbol of all American womanhood. She caught because she could barely conceal her disdain for those of us required to work for a living. Rudeness and condescension do not get a pass just because one is rich, female and married to a man running for president. Being polite isn’t too much to ask of a public figure, regardless of gender.
And to the last moment of the campaign, she was true to herself in a way that few of us dare. When speaking to a friend about her critics in the press a few months back, she said, “If I do what they want me to do, there will be nothing left of me.” She never let that happen.One is forced to asked how much of *her* there was in the first place.
Only after she was widowed did she go to work full-time, running the Heinz family philanthropies.Where do I sign up for this tough job?
Perhaps most unforgivably, she is unself-consciously sexy at 66 and not unaware of her power as a woman.Er, I suppose that first part is a matter of opinion. However, those that really are comfortably with whatever level of attractiveness they may posses usually don’t need to trumpet it to the world. If they’re that all-fired gorgeous, the world certainly knows it.“Power as a woman?” Haven’t we gotten past that “I am Woman, Hear me Roar” stage? I know a few raving loons and a few straight-up banshees. I suppose that if they had a billion dollars and had a husband running for president, their lunatic banshee-ness would be called powerful. Then, again, there may be some truth in that naming. There is indeed power in the decibel area.
She was running behind schedule that day, and the mostly female crowd waiting for her was restive. There is only so much multitasking that can be accomplished on a folding chair when the speaker has already run 90 minutes late, and many women were murmuring about the children they had to pick up and jobs they had to get back to.The ultimate expression of rudeness is to disregard the time of another.
Instead, when she did arrive, she was perfectly composed and offering no excuses. Me voila, my fellow Americans, now deal with it.Ms. Henneberger makes my point, inadvertently, to be sure. How inconsiderate.
I’m only sorry we won’t have the chance to get over the jolt.Well that makes one of us. THK gives us lunatic banshees a bad name. :-)