Friday, August 27, 2010

When partisanship turns funny.

From a New York Times op-ed looking back on the women's suffrage movement:
But, at that time, women’s suffrage was still unthinkable to anyone but radical abolitionists. Since the nation’s founding, Americans considered women to be, by nature, creatures of the home, under the care and authority of men. They had no need for the vote; their husbands represented them to the state and voted for them. So, in the 14th Amendment’s second section, Republicans inserted the word “male,” prohibiting the denial of voting rights to “any of the male inhabitants” of the states.
Speaking of "inserting", notice the spinal-reflex insertion of "Republicans" in there? *shakes fist* Damn you, George Bush, and your patriarchal oppression!

I'd imagine that the Democrats of the time probably opposed wimmenfolk voting, too, but they were too busy lynching negroes to have their opinions on the topic recorded for posterity.


Unknown said...

Its kind of funny that "The Party of Lincoln", the Republicans, are demonized as the oppressors of this country. They worked feverishly in the years preceding the Civil War to abolish slavery. Its obvious when you look at it. The Democrats have used racial policy to inhibit the integration of our largest minority populations into mainstream society, thus guaranteeing ideological unrest generated by them to keep us at each others throats. Keep us fighting each other while they grab more power. If 80% of the people who vote (D) no matter what on their ballot, actually read history they would be appalled. For the record, I am not a registered Republican. I prefer to vote on each candidate individually and try to find one that leans toward my Libertarian principals.

Stranger said...

If my grandmother had been presented with the suggestion she was under her husband's control, she would have probably put a lead period to the debate.

As my dad often said, his parents could talk about things and come to a conclusion - but if granddad was stubborn she cut his biscuits off.

"Women's wiles" had far more effect than most of today's "progressives" are willing to recognize. That - and the .44 Russian Merwin and Hulbert grandmother always had close at hand.


Wolfwood said...

I'm busy trying to figure out if "cut his biscuits off" is a euphemism or not...

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

I'm thinking you could only do that "cut his biscuits off" once.

Unless we're talking about a different euphemism.

Anonymous said...

Wolfwood, First one, then the the other.

Brian J. said...

History would teach us that Susan B. Anthony was once arrested for voting despite her womanness, and she proudly boasted that she voted straight ticket Republican when she did.

History would teach us that if it taught us what happened instead of what history teachers and historians would have preferred happened.

Tam said...

Brian J.,

But that's not how I feel she voted.

Bubblehead Les. said...

Why do you think they call it "Revisionist History"?

Nathaniel said...

The Democrats in the late 19th century and early 20th century (before ol' Woodrow Wilson came along) were proponents of limited government, and the Republicans were big-government interventionists (in both economics and foreign affairs).

I'd vote Democrat in a heartbeat, if the Democrat on the ticket was Grover Cleveland.

Mike S said...

The Constitutionally-ignorant NYT ignores that the family is the smallest iteration of the founding principle of representative government. The husband is, in effect, the designated elector representing the family at the polls, just as their rep at the electoral college represents a few thousand families at the polls.

Why would a woman marry someone who's political views are diametrically opposed to her own? In this case, her vote would cancel out her husband's... was this the purpose of woman's suffrage?

And if they agree, what's the point in simply doubling the number of votes cast?

Or did they realize that single women tend to vote for state support (Democrat nanny-state style) and this is what they were hoping for?

But really, I think the liberals' idea of a unified family is everyone in the same lunchline down at the soup kitchen or welfare office.

Brad K. said...

@ Wolfwood,

I grew up with neighbor that had the trivet "Kissin' don't last/Cookin' do" hanging on the kitchen wall - kind of a pointed reminder what cooking the husband could expect if the cook is irritated. Sort of along the lines of "Kiss the Cook", and "If Mama isn't happy, nobody's happy".

I imagine "cut is biscuits off" is a euphemism for escalating levels of domestic service denial. If the budget only covered meals prepared at home - he was likely facing substantial hardship. This might be where "bread and water" originated.

Passive-aggressive resistance is brutal in any relationship.

Stranger said...

Craig Miller is essentially correct. But just for the record, the crumb (i.e. railroad talk for a louse) who inserted the offensive language in the 14th Amendment happened to be a Copperhead.

Brad K. pretty much has it correct on denial of victual as a form of domestic persuasion.

First, no fresh biscuits for husband's breakfast allows the woman to sleep in an extra hour. No hot coffee adds another fifteen minutes to her nap time. Etc., etc..

In a really serious case, the errant husband finds his bed on the porch. Or in the barn. When the nearest bought meal is a half day's ride away, the situation becomes dire on the second day.

In a world where both husbands and wives worked 14 to 16 hours a day, it did not take long to "bring a man to taw."

And in that same world, where tramps, hobos, harps, and other strangers of ill repute were common, most girls learned to shoot. To put some game on the table and for self defense.


Chuck Pergiel said...

Foolish me, I completely missed the political insertion until you pointed it out. But that was so long ago I'm not sure Republican and Democrat meant the same thing as they do now. Actually, I'm not sure what they mean now, except the Republicans make me see red. I know the Democrats are just as evil and corrupt as the Republicans, but for some reason the stuff I hear attributed to Republicans always sounds incredibly stupid and self-serving.

Montie said...


The problem is right there in your comment "the stuff I HEAR attributed to Republicans". What we all 'hear' and 'see' is carefully orchestrated by the media to reflect poorly on those they don't approve of, i.e. Republicans (conservatives) and reflect glowingly on those they favor, i.e. Democrats (liberals or more correctly these days, leftists). Why else do you think that "political insertion" was there?

BTW, Republican and Democrat still mean the same thing, it's just our understanding of the parties that has changed (see Tam's "lynching" remark for clarification).

SteveO said...

From the first paragraph - "although women are still poorly represented in Congress..."

Lemme axe you sumthin, Ms. Stansell. These "influential female senators and representatives" of which you speak - do they not represent the men of their districts and states, as well as the women? Isn't it true, then, that wimmin-folk are just as well-represented as men?

Brad K. said...


I hope your question about women being represented was rhetorical.

Look at the track record. Some districts have women representatives - and some won't have them. Some women represent women and let the men take care of themselves if they can; others fairly represent the businesses and people living in their district. Still others "play ball", and represent the men just as reprehensibly as the worst bigoted man; they hope for approval, or entry to the power lunches and choice offices and other opportunities.

I recall a number of reports that African Americans believed they were voting in "their" President - and not someone that would lead all the people.

Monsanto might be the only entity that shouldn't be complaining about inadequate representation. And maybe the SEIU leadership.

Anonymous said...

As part of my job I've been reading the papers of a US representative from western Texas who was in the House from the 1940s to the 1980s. He was exceedingly D, not a Dixiecrat but more Truman-Scoop Jackson type. And I read him complaining about government interference in things in the late 1040s through 1960, and how important it is for his constituents to anty up cash and effort in order to build at least a portion of a major public works project on their own.He's not talking about federal vs. states' rights, but about how important it is for the locals to stand on their won feet.

And 'm reading this and wondering, "where the &*^% did these guys go and what became of the Democrat party?!?"


Tam said...


And for the first part of the century, the GOP was the party of big-government meddling progressives...

Anonymous said...


You work at Intel .... in Oregon

If you aren't a liberal Obama loving, Corporate Whore then I would have been stunned. As it is you sound exactly as I would expect you to.

Uninformed, Well programmed, Librobot