Sowing the Winter Wheat

Suffragists, Feminists and Other Sheroes

Archive for feminism

The Irony of Melania Trump’s Speech

 

As a feminist, I try very hard not to bash other women.  I don’t do so well when it comes to women like Sarah Palin or Ann Coulter but Melania Trump is a different situation.

I debated whether or not to even watch her speech but it appears that I didn’t have to since I saw some of it in 2008, when Michelle delivered it.  Yes, I will admit that late last night I had a little giggle as the reports rolled in about her plagiarizing Michelle Obama’s speech.

Now the irony of this awkward situation for the Trump campaign is that they are trying loudly and abusively to distance themselves from President Obama and Hillary Clinton. And Yet….. the person closest to Donald Trump comes out and pointedly says that they have the same family values as Barack Obama and his wife. Can it get any better than this?

As much as Trump wants to be divisive, his dear wife inadvertently brings us all together and copies not the speech of another Republican president’s  wife, like Laura, Barbara, or Nancy but she relies on the help of the much ridiculed but brilliant wife, Michelle Obama. She admitted several days before to Matt Lauer that she had written most of the speech herself but she neglected to say that got help from Michelle. She had painted herself into a corner.  Sadly, it wouldn’t have been plagiarism  if she had just stated that “just like Michelle Obama, I……” but she very well couldn’t have done that in front of those gnashing wolves at the convention. If she hadn’t been Trump’s wife, they would have eaten her alive.

So this morning, as a feminist, I have to admire Melania’s efforts. She emulated someone she admired. A woman who is a Democrat. She may not have the best taste in men but in women…. she couldn’t have done any better.

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The spinning of Hillary Clinton……

 

womanswork

“Woman’s Work” (monoprint with etching and collage)- d.little-wilson

I think the time has come to start enjoying the history being made, rather than sitting silently and worrying about what might happen. Women’s History is pushing forward in spite of the walls that have been built to block the way. That is truly remarkable.

So let’s get right to it and talk about Hillary Clinton……

As long as I have watched Hillary, she has had to defend herself against a constant barrage of Conservative propaganda. I have marveled at her tenacity. Her dedication to fighting for social justice overrides whatever is thrown at her. Personally, I would have thrown in the towel long ago or just carried the towel to the beach along with a very strong mojito. Is the United States really worth all the negative beatings that she has had to endure? Evidently she believes we are worth it and she has not given up on US even though she could have. Sadly,  that fact just gets spun into the idea that she is only power hungry and overly ambitious.

She started forming these dastardly ideals when she was a teenager and saw Martin Luther King speak. For a male to have such aspirations at an early age, he is rewarded with pride and is encouraged. For a female,  she is usually met with a smile and is stiffled. This is nothing new for women. In biblical times, men debated whether women had souls, so men have had fears about women from the beginning of time. It is no wonder that it has taken so long for a woman to get as far as Hillary in the political world. Luckily, Hillary had the support of her family.

Now, I know many  have bought into the 25 some odd years of propaganda against the Clintons.   At every turn, I hear blanket statements about how Hillary is such a liar and how she is an overzealous and corrupt witch, usually parroted along with “Benghazi” or her blatant disregard of rules about her emails. And yet…. she has not been found guilty of anything. Some how that does not stop the desire to make Hillary into an evil human being set out to destroy the world. Just wishing something true, doesn’t make it so. But that is the nature of propaganda, say it enough and eventually it is taken as a truth. And the problem with the propaganda against the Clintons is that Conservatives have put out so much of it that it is almost impossible to find the truth. But ,of course, it is there if you do the research.

 

HerLifeOnTheLine

“Her Life on the Line” (Hand colored Etching) -d. little-wilson

I would like to go back to 1992 when Bill Clinton was running for President against George H. W. Bush. Hillary, an accomplished lawyer fighting for the rights of children and the disenfranchised  was asked by Family Circle magazine to pit herself against Barbara Bush on an important woman issue… baking cookies. Unfortunately, Hillary didn’t play along gracefully. She had the wild notion that a first lady didn’t have to surrender her career totally if her husband became the leader of the free world and just bake cookies.  She did submit an Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe but it was too late. The punishing of Hillary had begun.

Her belief that women should be able to tackle major issues has always been a whipping post issue. Instead of redecorating the Blue Room, she took on Healthcare and was met with patronizing criticism. “We voted for Bill but not Hillary” etc. AND then when it hit the fan that Bill cheated on Hillary, there was terrible disappointment that she didn’t divorce or kill him. Instead they vilify HER for standing by her man because she enjoyed her position and loved the lime life, like a Kardashian.

If she tries to keep her cool, she is too reserved and a cold fish. God forbid that she ever cry or she will be labeled as too emotional to handle the hard stuff. If her hair is too short or she wears pants, she is only trying to be a man or is she just  a lesbian? And how much does she spend on her clothes? They think her voice is too shrill while their candidate can openly be misogynistic and a racist and is tolerated. Someone dies, did she have him killed?

Hillary gets spun like the rinse cycle on a washing machine every day. She should be deemed “clean” by now, don’t you think?

hotwater

“She always seems in Hot Water” (monoprint w/etching & collage)-d.little-wilson

Three Suffragists Etchings…..

"susan b anthony"I started with 3 rather large drawings that I made of 3 suffragists…. Susan B Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Carrie Chapman Catt … Sort of the beginning and the end results of the process of getting women the right to vote…. I have been interested for quite some time  in the idea of  creating images of women using words or objects to form their bodies and drawing their heads… These women had so much to say that I thought it would be quite easy to form their bodies with their words…. Since Susan B was on the road so much, I filled her with advertisements of her upcoming speeches and other ephemera promoting her….. And her infamous statement running down her arm, “Failure is Impossible”.. and a photo of Elizabeth Cady Stanton over her heart…..

I have a good collection of suffrage postcards and wanted to include them some way so I made etchings of three of them and matched them up to the three different women…. The Susan B Lives postcard, of course, was obvious and  had to go with my Susan B etching and I think, completes the idea that her spirit is still alive and well in the current women’s movement…. our ever constant fight for equality with the men and generally our place in the world…. Failure is Impossible…. The postcard is something done in probably the 70s…..

elizabeth cady stantonFor Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B’s best friend, I filled her body with her most important speech, “The Solitude of Self”….. If you are not familiar with this writing, check it out by clicking here.. It is probably the best piece she wrote and speaks passionately of full freedoms of individuals… It was her farewell speech when she resigned as president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association in 1892….. Again, remember we didn’t get the vote until 1920….. The postcard I chose to be paired with her etching was probably from either the 30s 0r 40s and was a birth announcement. I felt she was definitely born to fight for this cause …..

carrie chapman catt2

And in the third etching of Carrie Chapman Catt, I constructed her body with an article that she wrote for a magazine about Equal Suffrage as an Issue of World Democracy… Carrie Chapman Catt sort of brought a conclusion to the voting struggle along with Alice Paul and all of the numerous courageous suffragists….. I love the postcard that I used with her of George Washington questioning “Did I save my country for this?”….. Well, yes, George W, this is our country too…..

I chose the accent color of red to punch up the striking importance of this part of our history…… Red is a color that is hard to ignore….. And for you printmakers, I printed the two colors on one plate and the color on the postcards was added after the etchings were printed and dried.

Each of these etchings is about 5.5 X 10 inches….

and just a little FYI….. are $145. each,  unframed….

McCain’s attitudes towards Women and his “Friends”……

“Bathing Beauties”

solar etching by debbie little wilson

If McCain wins and I have to listen to him say “My Friends” a hundred times in every speech, I will slit my wrists…. It is bad enough that we have had to endure eight years of Bushisms but the prospect of four years of Palin’s folksy, gosh darn it nonsense and McCain’s breathy “Listen, my friends” will absolutely do me in….Okay, I had to get that off of my chest first before I could continue…

They say that “Actions speak louder than words” and what I have observed of McCain’s actions towards women is a big shout out…. His voting record alone makes me understand how he views women’s rights.. I could list these but they are too long …. If you are interested in viewing them in detail, check out.. WomenForBarackObama.com

or go to Votesmart.org to learn how he has voted on all of the issues….

In my efforts to tolerate Sarah Palin, I have just come to feel sorry for her….. She is really just a pawn for McCain to add a bust, oh I mean, boost to his dragging campaign….. There were other more qualified Republican women whom he could have chosen but they weren’t sexy enough and we all know that sex sells… Now, granted, Palin did accept the position “without blinking” but she should have known that she wasn’t ready for the job….. Maybe if she had really read all of those magazines or newspapers that she couldn’t name to Katie Couric, she would have been better equiped….. she should have said “Thanks, but no thanks” to McCain’s sexism….

I hesitate to bring up McCain’s first wife but since we are talking about how he views women, I might as well go ahead….. While he was a POW, his wife was in a horrible car wreck…. she became disfigured and gained weight…. He comes home and dumps her for a richer, younger, more fit model…. Not an uncommon tale but if you claim that are in the “moral” party, you might as well “walk the walk and talk the talk” or suffer the criticism …..

Recently during the debate, a young black woman got up to ask him a question…… His body language spoke volumes…. Instead of answering her question and looking into her eyes, he totally turned his back to her when he spoke…… I was in disbelief…. A sharp contrast to the hand shaking and drooling he did over the overweight comrade in arms at the beginning of the debate….I don’t know if this reaction was because she was a woman or because she was black or because he was just too old to be standing that long but what ever it was, it was pretty rude

Women are not the only people he doesn’t respect…. I would talk about the “that one” comment but it leaves me speechless…..There was that moment he told the young man that he probably never heard about Fannie and Freddie until this crisis…. how insulting….

McCain doesn’t even seem to have as much tolerance for women or African Americans as Palin has for the gay community…..and that isn’t saying much….It seems like he only has respect for the old guard Republicans and military men…. that leaves a huge portion of our population at risk….. which scares me…..

and leaves me wondering, who are these “friends” that he keeps talking about………

An Introduction

Nearing the end of her life, Elizabeth Cady Stanton wrote in her diary, “We are sowing winter wheat which the coming spring will see sprout and which other hands than ours will reap and enjoy”….

She knew that she would not live long enough to see the results of what she fought so hard for most of her life….. the right of women to be able to vote…. On October 26, 1902, she died… It would be another 18 years before women were given that right….

On March 13, 1906, Susan B. Anthony died…. Lucretia Mott had died in 1880….. Matilda Joslyn Gage died in 1898… Lucy Stone died in 1893….. Amelia Bloomer died in 1894….. Basically, most of the women who initiated the struggle did not live long enough to see the fruits of their labor…..

I saw a report one day on CNN explaining that 22 million women had voted during the last election while about 20 million women of voting age did not….. My first thought was “What the hell is wrong with those 20 million women? …. Don’t they know what women went through to get us that right?….. Did the winter wheat not get fully harvested?”

I was disgusted…..

Well, in their defense, most of our history books just gloss over the women’s suffrage movement and unless you take a Women’s History course in college, you might be inclined to think only men made history… Okay, so that might be a bit of an exaggeration …… sort of……

As an artist, I usually research my subjects and end up getting as wrapped up in the history as in doing the actual art….. This certainly was the case in what I discovered about the strong and amazing suffragists….. I wanted to share my journey with you….. And then maybe together we won’t waste our inherited winter wheat……..