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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Obama You Can Call Me Sweetie

    A few months ago on his campaign trail, Barack Obama was asked by reporter Peggy Agar’s about how he was going to help American autowokers if elected. His response to the female reporter; ‘Hold on a second, sweetie.’ Obama quickly apologized, calling the reporter and saying, ‘It’s a bad habit of mine. I do it sometimes with all kinds of people.’ However, buzz of the word ‘sexist’ still remains even months later; the incident was still mentioned in passing during the Democratic National Convention. Which leads us to wonder, what do women want? According to Michelle Obama, women have put 18 million cracks in the notorious glass ceiling. We are teachers, professors, doctors and even presidential candidates. At the same time, plenty of women use gender to their advantage. Short skirts in workplaces, low cut tops in classrooms, thongs sticking out of low-rise jeans. In one Stony Brook political science class a female student stated that she wants equal pay for equal work and, in the same breath, she expressed her expectation that a man should pay for her on a date. Several male students in the same class confirmed that his girlfriends rarely paid when they went out. In the 21st century do we really expect him to pay for everything? Wouldn’t that mean men should be earn higher salaries because they have to pay for us and buy us things? Women who feel this way give others a bad rap. So why get offended if someone of the opposite sex refers to you with a term of endearment? It’s not like Obama said, ‘hold on a second, sexy.’ Wouldn’t you rather a president with a softer, more compassionate side than one who isn’t? In our nation men were breadwinners, protectors and providers for their family long before women had the right to vote. In colonial towns men watched out for women and children. Maybe old habits die hard. Some women seem to want equality only when it suits them. In certain situations we would rather be the weaker race. You don’t see women picketing for the right to be drafted. Therefore, the ‘sexist’ question is thrown back to the reporter and women across the campus and globe. If she doesn’t want to be singled out as a woman than it is her job to assert herself and not let Obama brush her off. The reporter had a microphone. She could have used it to shout ‘Mr. Obama, that’s not an appropriate response’ if she thought he crossed the line.

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