The blogosphere is abuzz today after GOP presidential contender Rick Perry linked his wife with menial house chores Monday evening. Politico’s Ben Smith was predictably outraged:
When Texas Gov. Rick Perry took his jacket off for a question-and-answer session in Waterloo last night, he joked about his attire.
“This shirt has a few wrinkles in it; it’s not my wife’s fault,” he said.
The line seemed very Texas, and a bit less directed at the women in the suburbs of Philadelphia and other big cities who are a key general election bloc…
Yes, Perry is obviously the judgmental one here, acting “very Texas.” Whatever that means.
Does making a lighthearted comment about your wife ironing your shirt really amount to sexism? Yes, according to Slate‘s John Dickerson:
The speech was bumpy at times. He pledged that when he became president members of the military would once again have someone they respected in the Oval Office. That’s a pretty serious charge to make both about the commander in chief and the military, which drills its members to respect the president no matter what. Also, he may want to lose that line about how the wrinkles in his shirt were not his wife’s fault—at least by the time he gets to the general election and starts going after those suburban swing-voting women.
So here you have two male political writers complaining that Perry’s remarks are sexist against women. As a woman, however, I’d like to speak for my gender with a message for both of them: get. a. life. We females will decide what is and is not offensive to us and certainly don’t need men to tell us how to interpret certain comments.
I was not at all offended by Perry’s comments for one main reason: How many men actually iron their own shirts?
That’s what I thought.