"Who pays the price? I'm not going to pay a personal price. My kids are too old, and my grandchild is too young," to serve, Boxer told Rice. "You're not going to pay a price, as I understand it, within immediate family. So who pays the price? The American military and their families.''None of these personal facts is a state secret; and yet everybody is yelling, "Cat fight!" and making noises about "vicious feminine politics". Tony Snow even said that it was "a great leap backward for feminism.'' Feminism is not a subject on which I normally consider Tony Snow an expert, somehow.
What this really demonstrates is the fact that the news media (not to mention the Bush White House!) still doesn't regard women as real participants in the political process, and I'll prove that. Imagine it's 1973. The U.S. Secretary of State is Henry Kissinger, who is single; and that exact remark is made to him by Senator J. William Fulbright, who at that time was 68 years old, 2 years older than Barbara Boxer is today.
I have no idea what Fulbright's family was like, but given his age, he could quite possibly have said something like that to Kissinger about the Vietnam War; and no one would have said a thing about it. If you don't like Fulbright in the role, pick any senator from the 70's who opposed the Vietnam war and was in his middle to late sixties, with children and grandchildren.
This whole flap is because one female politician stated a series of obvious facts to another female politician; if one man had said it to another, or if Senator Boxer had said it to a childless man, it wouldn't have made the news. Senator Boxer is refusing to apologize, and she should refuse to apologize; if stating facts is offensive, we're all in trouble. The furor is being stirred up by the Bush White House, which is trying to devalue Senator Boxer's statements by labeling them a woman's opinion.