My shock at his words spewed out automatically. I looked at him and asked, "Did you just say he was beat by a girl?" Immediately my friend recanted. He himself didn't know where that comment came from. He felt badly and that was that. But days and weeks later, I couldn't forget it. Something truly bothered me.
Girls and women, infinitely diverse in their interests, appearance, ambition, ability, aspirations, make up more than 50 percent of the human population, but you would never know any of this watching our top grossing films. Despite decades of research, it is apparent that we are, as a culture, so used to women being marginal that we don't even notice.
Before women candidates can even begin to make their arguments and present their platforms, they must face frequent verbal attacks intended to take them down a peg or more -- merely for being women. Is it too much to hope that more people grow aware of just how female candidates' behaviors are marked? Are political observers and journalists at last advanced enough to recognize when certain actions are being disparaged simply because a woman is taking them? Or do we remain suckers in a land of sophists, buying into innuendo, believing whatever's implied -- even if it has nothing whatsoever to do with the truth?