Monday, August 8, 2011

What the Heck is Up with Newsweek & Conservative Women?

In November 2009, Newsweek put former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin on its cover. But this wasn’t any ordinary cover. It featured Palin in short, shorts next to the headline, “How Do You Solve a Problem Like Sarah?” The photo, it turns out, was a photo that originally appeared in Runner's World, where folks wear running stuff, duds not normally seen on the campaign trail.

Newsweek justifiably was on the receiving end of all manner of attack for being sexist and attempting to mock a female pol by trying to pigeon-hole her as a mindless bimbo.

Now comes this week’s cover, and another, attractive GOP woman is on the cover next to a snotty headline, “The Queen of Rage: Michele Bachmann on God, the Tea Party and the Evils of Government.”

It’s not the headline with which I take issue, it’s the photo which intentionally makes Bachmann look like a bug-eyed crazy woman. Meanwhile the actual article called her “petite and prim” with “the earnestness of a preacher.”

What’s Newsweek’s issue with high profile, conservative women pols that they need to be depicted on their covered in ways that make caricature them?

Sure, Sarah Palin has appeared on Newsweek more recently while wearing a form fitting hooded sweatshirt with the headline, "I Can Win," but the cover had this quality to it that made it seem more about sex than about policy and whether Palin would make a run for the presidency.

Image credits: Newsweek.

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