Is she or isn’t she?
Can you believe it? Elena Kagan is such a brilliant nominee to the Supreme Court – smart, centrist, popular, no paper trail, gonzo resume – that desperate Republicans are reduced to asking:
Is she or isn’t she – a lesbian?
She must be a lesbian, they say, because she’s 50, never married, and – shocker! – once played softball.
How absurd and irresponsible can you get?
First of all, whether she is or is not gay, makes no difference on whether she is qualified to serve on the court. No more than whether she is a Jew, Catholic, or Protestant.
Second, even asking the question perpetuates a stereotype about professional women: If they’re successful and single, they must be gay.
Third, making her sexuality an issue about Kagan represents a huge double-standard, when it comes to men and women in public life. Why is this question only asked about women executives like Janet Napolitano or Elena Kagan?
There are several, single, never-married Republican men in Congress. We all know who they are, and nobody cares. Unless we’re willing to subject them to the same, intense, personal scrutiny, we should insist that any such question about Elena Kagan be dropped as inappropriate.
“Is she or isn’t she?” should not even be part of the debate.
That’s my parting shot for today.