Sexism knows no political boundaries

While typically seen as the domain of regressive fundamentalist Christians who believe a woman’s place is in the kitchen, subservient to her husband, left-wingers are not immune to the issue.

Enter David Schreck, form BD NDP MLA and political commentator who takes offence to Premier Christy Clark’s clothing choice in the legislature:

Is Premier Clark’s cleavage revealing attire appropriate for the legislature?

He deservedly receives a torrent of criticism from a number of BC Liberal supporters, accusing him of sexism and of being a “moron.”

Still in possession of his shovel, Schreck continues to dig deeper. He responds to many of his critics reaffirming his possession, citing other women in the legislature as examples, linking to the book Erotic Capital (which I’m not clear how it supports his thesis), and suggesting followers Google “cleavage and appropriate business attire”.

With the recent PC leadership win by Alison Redford in Alberta, Canada now has more female first ministers than at any point in history – Christy Clark with the BC Liberals, Kathy Dunderdale with the NFLD PCs, and Eva Aariak in Nunavut. However, even at this point, women in power still face criticism not over actual policy or substantive issues (of which their are many to criticize with Premier Clark), but over their fashion choices.

It’s striking to me that the majority of female first ministers in Canada have represented conservative parties. While I don’t believe that progressive parties have any more of a sexism issue than conservative ones, comments like Schreck’s do challenge that belief.

In reality, I really don’t care what our politicians – male, female, or transgendered – wear to work. Given that our representatives are supposed to be… representative, perhaps it would be better if they wore more casual clothing.