Intro to Women's Studies 2010

etsu: 2011-2014

Lesbian Baiting

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Lesbian baiting is how society has continued to classify women as being inferior to men. According to Pharr, any woman, not only a homosexual woman, can be called a lesbian. She argues that we as women will be labeled lesbians by, “being independent, going our own way, living whole lives, fighting for our rights, demanding equal pay, saying no to violence, being self-assertive, bonding with and loving the company of other women, assuming the right to our bodies, insisting upon our own authority, and making changes that include us in society’s decision-making.” I do not assume that this thinking is the same all over the world, but in the societies  (the US and Venezuela) that I was raised in, women are expected to be somewhat submissive to men. I know that the word submission comes off as a bit extreme and outdated. We normally think of the women of the 1950s and under to be submissive. The concept of lesbian baiting and submission are not worlds apart; both have a superior person and an inferior person. I also believe that this concept has not subsided. I still think women have a standard that they have to live up to. This is showcased in politics. Think of Hilary Clinton. She was in the race to become the democratic candidate in 2008. I do not have a problem with the fact that she lost the debate against Obama. My problem is with the reaction of the public. She was criticized for being intellectual and some might say better than some of the male candidates. She was also judged on her looks. They were saying she was too masculine or not pretty enough. I do not know about you but that sounds like lesbian baiting to me! Remember her husband? He was a president that had some serious issues during his presidency, but he was beloved and still is liked by our nation. Another example is our current First Lady, Michelle Obama. She is a smart, independent woman and many people dislike her. Why can’t we accept Hilary and Michelle? Would we like them if they just stood behind their husbands and were dumb and pretty? Those are the questions that make me think that lesbian baiting is not only true but prominent in today’s society.


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