Editor's Note: Every Friday we touch on a hot button issue that, we hope, generates strong opinion from you. The segment is called "Just Sayin'" – and this week Carol Costello ponders the question: Is feminism obsolete? Tell us what you think!
From CNN's Carol Costello and Ronni Berke
It seems every time the media spotlight shines on Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, there's another debate about feminism. Some conservative women were upset feminists didn't protest loudly when late night host David Letterman initially refused to apologize for his off-color joke about Palin's daughter.
Is that because Sarah Palin isn't a feminist? Can a conservative woman be a feminist these days?
Not really, says Republican Strategist and CNN Commentator Mary Matalin. "No conservative woman would choose to call herself a feminist as it's described by liberals today," she says.
Matalin says feminism used to be about the freedom to choose the life you wanted. Now it's an exclusive club, closed off to women like Sarah Palin.
"No conservative woman would choose to call herself a feminist as it's described by liberals today." And who epitomizes today's feminism? In Harper's Bazaar, feminist writer Naomi Wolf calls film star and humanitarian Angelina Jolie, "the embodiment of female power and liberation."
Liberal women champion Hillary Clinton. Blogger Jessica Valenti, of feministing.com, says even a pro-life woman can be considered a feminist, however, "if a woman is actively fighting against legislation that allows for abortion and allows for access to birth control, than no, I don't think she can be a feminist."
So, if the word "feminist" is weighed down by such political baggage, why keep using it?
"The truth is," Valenti says, "I think no matter what word we used, if it meant women's rights it would end up being a bad word. It would end up being disparaged, so I think we have to stick with what we've got."
Filed under: Just Sayin'
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