Why??? Why do all verbal fights between women end up with jabs at our weight/looks? Are we too intellectually stunted to think of anything else to say?
This article is from the Times Online.
Kiss my fat ass: Meghan McCain weighs in on pundits
Tom Baldwin in Washington
Comment Central: why Meghan McCain is right
Defeated Republicans have turned on each other with a debate on the party's future descending into a protracted bout of name-calling and poisonous remarks about the girth of John McCain's daughter.
Mocked as a “plus-sized model” and a “valley girl gone awry”, Meghan McCain has responded to what she said were “heartless, substance-less attacks about my weight” by declaring that her right-wing critics can “kiss my fat ass”.
The opening shots in what excitable cable TV channels are - perhaps inevitably - calling “the Battle of the Bulge” were fired by Ms McCain. Having already generated controversy this month by saying that the presidential campaign ruined her love life, she has now decided to take on the ultra-conservative (and very thin) commentator Ann Coulter.
The 24-year-old daughter of the Republican presidential nominee in the last election said that Ms Coulter was a “train wreck” and the “poster woman” for extreme elements who would bring further disaster to the party.
Ms Coulter is no shrinking violet, having once described Democratic convention delegates as “corn-fed, no make-up, natural fibre, no-bra needing, sandal-wearing hirsute, somewhat fragrant hippie chick pie wagons”.
On this occasion, however, she deferred to another siren of the right. Laura Ingraham used her syndicated radio show to ask: “Do you think that anyone would be talking to you if you weren't kind of cute and you weren't the daughter of John McCain?” Imitating Ms McCain's voice and intonation, she added: “Okay, I was really hoping that I was going to get that role in the Real World, but then I realised that, well, they don't like plus-sized models. They only like the women who look a certain way. On this 50th anniversary of Barbie, I really have something to say.”
Ms McCain's first response came on the Twitter social networking website: “To all the curvy girls out there, don't let anyone make you feel bad about your body. I love my curves and you should love yours too.” Then she took her fight-back to a daytime TV show and to her blog with the Daily Beast where, amid making pointed references to Ms Ingraham being “20 years older than I”, she cited examples ranging from Hillary Clinton to Jessica Simpson of women in public life being bullied over their appearance.
“Instead of intellectually debating our ideological differences about the future of the Republican Party, Ingraham resorted to making fun of my age and weight, in the fashion of the mean girls in high school,” wrote Ms McCain, adding that she had nothing to hide about her waistline - with her dress size stretching to 10 during the election.
“My weight was consistently criticised throughout the campaign. Once someone even suggested I go to a plastic surgeon for liposuction. On the other side, my mother was constantly slammed for being too skinny, so the weight obsession of the media and our culture goes both ways.
“Why, after all this time and all the progress feminists have made, is weight still such an issue? And in Laura's case, why in the world would a woman raise it? Today, taking shots at a woman's weight has become one of the last frontiers in socially accepted prejudice.”
Ms Ingraham, who like many conservatives was never really reconciled to Mr McCain representing the party in the last election, believes that his daughter is following a family tradition of attacking fellow Republicans.
“Memo to Meghan McCain: Enjoy the media coverage while it lasts, but know you're being used,” she wrote in a blog post entitled, “Useful Idiot Watch”, adding: “You are the flavour of the month in left-wing media land because you are a Republican bashing the GOP. Likewise, your dad is most popular among the same people when he is slamming his Republican brethren in full-blown ‘maverick' fashion. At least he backs up his views with a lifetime of sacrifice and public service.”
Ms Ingraham pointed out that a book had been written about Rush Limbaugh, the right-wing talk show host, describing him as a “Big Fat Idiot” while she and Ms Coulter had been ridiculed publicly as “peroxide blondes”. She said: “If you can't stand the heat, get out of the punditry business. Next time, just for fun, Meghan should pretend that she's had a change of heart and is now a pro-life conservative. Then she'll really see how the Mean Girls treatment feels.”
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