Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Birkhold Sonned Me on Spitzergate: The Hillary-Spitzer Connection

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Yesterday, I mentioned to Birkhold that I felt bad for Elliott's wife,
Silda Spitzer.
He asked why?

M.dot: Because, its embarrassing.
B: F-ck that. She has agency (an ability to act on her own behalf. In this
this case, acting would have meant leaving Elliott).
M.dot: Yeah, but still.
B: Listen M. A man who is married and getting prostitutes
is
not treating his wife right at home.
B: I am waiting for a woman, some woman to stand up, and point
out all the kinky sh-t he has done so folks can see exactly who they
elected.
M.dot: Dude, isn't that a puritanical, witch hunt?
B
: Hell naw. Think about it. This is about the compromise that women
make with their dignity in order to remain with certain cats.
M.dot: Like Hillary who sat by and watched her husband screw god
knows what, because she wanted to be president?
B: Exactly.
Then I turned around and read this and while it wasn't directed
at me, I was like, sh-t, I just got sonned. When I reflected on my
rambling Spitzer post yesterday,
I felt like a lame feminist. He writes,
Our society expects so little of men that we see Spitzer’s involvement with a prostitute as normal male behavior. We live in a society where men commonly refer to sex in violent terms like “beat it up” and “hit it.” Consequently, we minimize the seriousness of sexual violence towards women. In truth, if our society were to examine Spitzer’s misogyny, it would be like holding a mirror up to the politically powerful men calling for his resignation.
I couldn't help but think of the notion of the "Soft Bigotry
of Low Expectations" and how it plays out in
both our political and school systems.

It became clear how low expectations are toxic to our democracy.

This idea will fortify me the next time someone tells me that
I expect too much.

It became clear to me how accountability just isn't a word,
it is a rigorous, daily action, that requires the moral nimbleness
of a ninja. (I like saying moral nimbleness of a ninja).

====
====

Why do we deny people the right to agency?

Why do we, reflexively, think of people as victims
not as folks who are capable of acting?

I guess as a victim, you are automatically someone
who is acted upon, not someone is committing an act.

Don't forget the school of thought that counts INACTION
as an action as well.

====
====

13 comments:

the prisoner's wife said...

i.
hmmm, i don't feel you got sonned. i feel like you just showed a different perspective. while i agreed with many points of Birkhold's article, some i didn't.

even his incitement of the misogyny sounds as if he's downplaying the complex response women can have in situations such as these. for instance...he wrote...

"Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, whose refusal to leave her cheating husband indicates that her political career is more important than her dignity, had no comment."

who's to say that she compromised her dignity? that is OUR interpretation of what "dignity" looks like. who are we to say what conversations went on between Bill & Hill. maybe they came to Jesus...maybe they have an open marriage (why are we accepting the limited, patriacharal view of what marriage looks like anyway?). who are we to judege and assess someone elses life? we can only do that about our own.

ii.
Why do we, reflexively, think of people as victims
not as folks who are capable of acting?
====
because being a victim is tough. and despite a victim's ability to act, being victimized can be a paralyzing thing, at least for a while.

Heavy D! said...

I strongly doubt that they have an open marriage. I think Birkhold was right. Any man who would fuck around with prostitutes behind his wife's back doesn't deserve to be married. Not sure if Mrs. Spitzer plans on running for office, but she has more than enough reason to leave him. I don't feel sorry for him at all.

Oh, and TPD is right. You didn't get sonned, you just held the man to the same expectations that he should have held himself too.

Aunt Jackie said...

I am sure I represent the least popular side of the coin on this one, but that's her husband that's their relationship and all anyone besides them can do is speculate.

I don't want the Government in my bedroom and I don't want in theirs. They reason that there is as such a low expectation of Fidelity is that Prostitution, sex and power are as old as time. In many societies, less Puritanically based than ours, men of power are allowed either multiple wives, and/or culture accepts Mistresses.

Men Pursue power in part because of the P*ssy and to be honest what's the point of having big balls if you can't use them. These are adults dealing with Adult shit.

I know someone personally whose husband had many trips to Brazil and many hoes during course of their relationship and it took her years to decide to leave him..and he ain't no Governor or President. She knew the dude, she knew how he was, she wasn't giving him none, but she liked the life they had outside of the bed...

M.Dot. said...

TPW...I am surprised.

You and I both know that she stayed with him while he fucked women from Arkansas to Capital Hill.

What woman who, was of the FIRST generation of women to integrate Yale Law School, what ambitious woman would tolerate a man so egregious, unless she felt that staying with him was better than not being with him?

If she didn't compromise her dignity, what did she compromise?

And if you think, they have an arrangement, would you cosign on an "agreement" between you and you and your husbear?

Full disclosure...I tried that open relationship shit....lets just say it went down in flames with him asking me for his keys back at lunch time in Penn Station.

Poetic. But true.

M.Dot. said...

These are adults dealing with Adult shit.
========

This is that bullshit blood.

Seriously. Think about it.

Think about the way our low expectations of our children affects their performance in school.

Think about how our low expectations of Politicians effects their performance.

Its is one thing to fuck your receptionist, a woman in your office, or even your best friends wife and fall and love.

But a prostitute.

All I think of is that point in the Wedding Crashers when he says "you don't pay a prostitute for the sex, you pay her to leave".

Wait. So do we not agree that being a public servant means making your private life public?

If not, what does it mean?

You are only a public servant from 9-5. Can't, ahem, swallow that fam.

Aunt Jackie said...

like I said I know I don't represent the popular vote however Prostitution is the oldest Profession for a reason, the power exchange for sex is age old. Paying for sex is what it is, personally I don't see why it's illegal to begin with.

Sex and power go hand in hand and if Power wasn't sexy no one would want any.

manaen said...

/rant on/
What part of the Governor's actions brought honor, dignity, or joy to his wife and daughters? Is that not part of marriage? I don't see how the fact that this problem is an old one means that it no longer is a problem -- is there some sentence that bad actions can serve and then be good actions? If cheating on your wife is not a problem, why did Hillary blast away at what she first supposed was a right-wing conspiracy to smear the person to whom she was married (vs. "husband," who would have looked after her well being) before she learned that the truth was documented?
.
Can someone explain how cheating is OK, not that it's been going on for a long time? And, how are the voters to trust someone who breaks this kind of trust? If you believe this was an "open marriage" -- as oxymoronic a phrase as "financial security," "common sense," or "value-free education" -- how would the Guv and Silda decide that was the smart play for an eminent office holder?
.
I've observed with interest the linguistic gymnastics people execute to avoid calling cheating what it is. LA's Mayor Villaraigosa tried to squelch the press's coverage of his cheating with a TV reporter by asking them to "respect my family" -- I suppose someone should fulfill that responsibility because he wasn't going to do it.
/rant off/

Model Minority said...

Paying for sex is what it is, personally I don't see why it's illegal to begin with.
========

My issue has less to do with the legality of prostitution.

I have spoken here before about power, the video vixens, unions, violence etc.


MY issue is, as black women, who are the recipients of a disproportionate amount of both Public and Private violence and misogyny we have to be concerned with What, a man who buys sex is indicitive of.

Its almost as if he has been given the "He is a grown man" stamp and sent on his merry way.

Both you and I KNOW DUDES, that go to Brazil for p-ssy and you know they AIN'T right in the head.
We also know men, who use prostitutes, and we know they are out of pocket at home with their wives.

Who knows what their daughters have seen and been subjected to.

I mean...its like my post a couple of weeks ago on dig dug and intervening.

When we don't the kids get fucked u

Where is the acknowledgment, that its not just the sex with a lady of the night, but the WILLINGNESS TO DO SO WHEN YOU ARE MARRIED being indicative of a whole lot of disease, dysfunction and VIOLENCE at home?

Model Minority said...

I've observed with interest the linguistic gymnastics people execute to avoid calling cheating what it is. LA's Mayor Villaraigosa tried to squelch the press's coverage of his cheating with a TV reporter by asking them to "respect my family" -
=======

I know....you ain't respect ya family....you a public servant....so...now we get to see and sniff all that dirty laundry...man listen...


I was really on some..he grown type ish too, until I realized the notion of standards...and expectations...Hoodrofic Kids always say, "YOu ain't expect me to BE SHIT so Imma go.....sell this crack...jack this fool...etc"

We treat are politicians and our children the same, soft bigotry of low expectations, then turn around and wonder why they under perform.

Fuck that.

the prisoner's wife said...

TPW...I am surprised.
===

why? my definition of love & marriage doesn't have to be anyone elses? who am i to say what THEY should do?

~~

And if you think, they have an arrangement, would you cosign on an "agreement" between you and you and your husbear?
====

i wouldn't, but again...I'm not in their marriage. i know someone who has an open marriage & it works for them (and they are BLACK!). when she first told me, i was shocked & wanted to say to her, "girl, what's the point of being married then?" but i had to ease my roll & realize that isn't my relationship and what works for one, does not work for all (just look at democracy...it doesn't always work in every case).

my point was this...she "sacrificed" her dignity according to YOU and many others. i don't see her as sacrificing her dignity. she wasn't whoring. If she decided to stay with him because she was comfortable with the role of bottom bitch & future president maybe, then so be it. that is HER choice. isn't that her agency in ACTION?

manaen said...

i don't see her as sacrificing her dignity. she wasn't whoring. If she decided to stay with him because she was comfortable with the role of bottom bitch & future president maybe, then so be it. that is HER choice. isn't that her agency in ACTION?
==============

Ummhhh, what kind of person would accept both roles, or expect to be able to accept both roles, of bottom b*tch and U.S. President? If you read that to a friend out loud, does it sound like a healthy/whole person or one who's split apart inside and in denial? I know it's not someone who I would choose to be my President. A President who would deal with serious broken trusts by accommodation, rolling over, or start calculating the greatest personal gain, bereft of dignity and honor (which looks like whoring to me)? Wasn't the great lesson of pre-WWII that appeasement of dishonorable international leaders just buys you more trouble?
.
I agree that is her agency in action, but what does this reveal about the healthiness of the person who so uses her agency?

the prisoner's wife said...

all of it is STILL speculation at this point. we don't know what's in her head OR what really goes on in their marriage.my own choice to stay with my dude in spite of his incarceration has led a lot of people to bravely ask, "how COULD you?" just like they don't know the inner workings of my life, we don't know the inner workings of the Clinton's or Spitzer's.

my use of the term "bottom bitch" was a pimp analogy & that was just for kicks LOL. perhaps you would feel more comfortable with "wife & US President-maybe"? does that sound better to you?

but hey...who am i to say who is whole & not. who are you?

at the end of the day, people are flawed. and many GOOD & GREAT people are flawed (MLK, JFK, Lincoln), does that negate the good that they do? should it?

Torrance Stephens bka All-Mi-T said...

one less, super delagate LOL wha yawl know bout the fifth dimensions.......on another note, aint that the truth. i put up chapter 3 from my due to be released next novel HER KISS WAS NEVER MINE on my blog today, let me know wha u think pls

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