Thursday, October 14, 2010

Linda McMahon, WWE, and violence against women

Guest post by R.K. Barry

Jackson Katz had a very important piece at The Huffington Post recently about Connecticut Republican Senate candidate Linda McMahon. Katz wrote:

[U]ntil Linda McMahon decided to run as a Republican for the United States Senate, she was one-half of one of the most culturally destructive, and blatantly misogynistic business partnerships in the history of popular entertainment. Under Linda and her husband Vince McMahon's leadership, the WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) has featured some of the most brutal, violent and hateful depictions of women in all of media culture over the past twenty years. 

He discussed the fact that all of this has received scant attention from the media. He pointed out that McMahon has amazingly pitched much of her Senate campaign to women.

I have always found professional wresting the most idiotic of spectacles, whether in the old days of Haystacks Calhoun and Andre the Giant or more recently with its fully scripted narratives that only the slack-jawed, or those too young to know any better, could find entertaining. 

Having worked for several years for an advocacy group that focused on educating the public about violence against women, I have a particular sensitivity to the issue. But I am at a loss to know how anyone viewing the video that Katz posts, showing women degraded by the WWE for the purposes of entertainment, could support Linda McMahon, who made millions off this kind of dreck.

The video is about ten minutes long and speaks for itself. (See below.)

As civilized as we like to think we are, in so much of our culture it is still simply the case that women exist for the entertainment of men. And it seems that this is okay for too many people.

If it were not okay, Linda McMahon would never have been considered a serious contender for high public office. In a fully civilized world, she and her business-partner husband would have been booted off the public stage a long time ago.

This is hard to watch but worth sitting through. It's one of those things. If a person watches this and still thinks that Linda McMahon is a suitable candidate for the United States Senate, not much more can be said.

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  • Huh?

    Allowing women the freedom to make a living in any way they care to is somehow a terrible thing in your world?

    Vote Freedom First!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:52 PM  

  • "Liberalism Unbound" indeed. Liberal thought seems to be unbridled self righteousness and "we know what's best for you and society, and we know this much better than you."

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:29 PM  

  • LOL, Give me a break. It is so silly for anyone to read that much into wrestling. They are story lines and that is all. I am not saying I support McManon's getting into politics but WWE is profitable and successful and gives back to Children through Make A Wish foundation and Has put on Shows for the U.S troops and done many good things as a company.

    Jessie Ventura became Governor of Minnesota and he said the following in wrestling "Win if you can lose if you must but always cheat". But still some how he got elected. Why because the actual person not the character Jessie "The Body" was running. WWE is in the entertainment business and if what they do is give it's audience what they want or try too. A foreign concept to politicians who make promises and tell lies without blinking.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:32 AM  

  • This is ridiculous. I thought the point of the whole womens rights movement was to bring equality for women. So now that there "WAS" a company that gave women the oppurtunity to do every thing that a man can in the company, and make a living the same way they do, then everybody thinks it's negative. They don't even allow actions like that in the WWE anymore. There are lots of men that get abused by their wives but nobody brings attention to men that get slapped by women in the WWE. If the women that work in the company didn't want to do the things that they do then they probably wouldn't be in the company. This is just a great example of small minded hipocrits and their opinions.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:44 PM  

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