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When Gender Bias Becomes Gender Bashing

Updated on February 17, 2016

Accusations of Gender Bias

When is it Gender Bias?

When Geraldine Ferrara became the running mate as the first female VP, the ripple effect was mild compared to the effect of Hillary Clinton running as a presidential candidate. Even with Geraldine Ferrara running as second in line to the presidency, the undertones were clear: Take Ferrara down.

One of the operatives of todays mostly male billionaire owned media is to publish bias to influence how people think. This works for the most impressionable whose inability to employ rationalization into their cognitive thinking allows absorptions of bias more easily. For the most intellectual, this type of bias only causes further research to garner supporting facts.

When the media first vetted Geraldine Ferrara, they immediately reported not just her annual income, but that of her husband as well. When John McCain selected Sarah Palin as his running mate, the media rarely mentioned Palin's husband or his income. Bias? Then, when it became obvious that Ferrara indeed could become the VP, biased media dug deeper into her husband's income, she rightfully refused to discuss it. As a result of media digging, her husband John Zaccaro, a business owner was made to appear to be a crook because he obtained bank financing which he withdrew. To the press, this was a fraudulent deal of $1,000. In consideration of the many deals of one Donald Trump, this petty accusation was a deliberate attempt to force Ferrara out of the presidential race. What the press didn't dare publish about John Zaccaro was his true business profile:

His business, P. Zaccaro Co., Inc. has continued into a 3rd geneation, as a privately held real estate development, management and investment firm in Manhattan. He was the principal for half a century as a broker, developer, manager and principal. Among his past clients are New York University and Emigrant Savings and the Bowery Savings Banks, not exactly the lower status types of clients. His property development across New York, Connecticut and Pennsylvania is also to his credit. In addition, he was appointed by the coursts of New York, Kings and Queens Counties as a trustee in bankruptcy and he also served various independent schools in New York City including Convent of the Sacred Heart and Saint David's School. He was a member of the board of directors of the co-op where he also resided.

All of this points to a kind of gender bias that seeks to destroy women in big business and government by assigning the actions of husband and children to the gender that is least welcomed to the "man's world."

Many things point to a very different gender bias men refuse to acknowledge, much less address. If women vote for a president based on solid studies of the candidate's past history and political platform, woe be to the woman if the candidate happens to be a man who is attractive. In this case, men say, "She's only voting for him because she thinks he's handsome." This gives very little credibility to women using their brains to choose their candidate. He votes for male candidates his entire voting lifetime. She votes for a female candidate and "SHE" is gender biased.

There is a peculiar pecking order some women miss and men invariably employ. When they are making choices for any position, it goes like this:

1. White male

2. Hispanic male

3. All other males

4. Women

After all, in this peculiar pecking order, whenever it's time for a job promotion, the pecking order is in full force. Even U.S. EEO laws have not changed this male mental peculiarity. To get a better perspective of the male theories on gender bias, consider the sudden onset of support for male candidates and the lack thereof for female candidates. In the U.S. Congress today, women politicians are outnumbered by 20 to 1.

Is this an aberration or just male gender bias unspoken? Women know they are not necessarily outnumbered in business, just in those hallowed Ivory Tower Executive offices where at present women are still outnumbered.

If she chooses a woman to replace a man in any job, she is gender biased whether or not the female replacement has equal qualifications.

Does it come down to a misunderstanding of the word "fair?"

It is true men have a very different opinion of what is and isn't "fair" than women do. Perhaps in early Neanderthal civilizations females were considered an unfortunate weak, though necessary appendage that only their female procreative skills were their saving grace. After all, Neanderthal tribesmen needed regular reinforcments to protect their existence from varying types of predators, human and animal. Meanwhile back in the Neanderthal caves, women were sorting out battles between the kids, dealing with sibling rivalries and the daily grind of life in a meager existence.

Neanderthal men decided what was fair at the end of a spear. Neanderthal women on the other hand had to decide what was fair to each of their offspring in order that these Neanderkids should survive. Of course, the Neanderkids knew never to get in the way of the males in their tribes. The outcome might be quite severe.

From the earliest civilizations, there has been a general acceptance of an awed reverence for the male of the species, while women were valued only as procreative mates who made life less harsh.

Women as Spinning Wheels

In many ways, women are spinning wheels that have to go around and around to get from Point "A" to Point "B" if they expect any level of advancement. What works in the "Man's World" doesn't work for women who try desperately to get ahead. Become an Alpha Woman and you crown yourself with more labels provided by the male gender who claim they are not "gender biased." They are gender biased, but they prefer not to confront it.

Just as in the earliest days of civilization, women were not expected to protect themselves, varying generations have taught women they are too weak to protect themselves or their children. Many women fall into the "Dependency Trap" that impels them to view their entire existence through the prism of their fathers and husbands. Obedient little girls who rarely mature without a man's assistance. They learn that "Daddy will always take care of them" early on.

The Growth of Alpha Women

Life is ever evolving. For many centuries women were little more than chattel, weren't allowed to "own" anything and if fact, had to be "bought" by a future spouse with a "dowry." The first women to actually emerge from the "Little Woman" stereotype were the women of the 1940s who manned the assembly lines in factories that produced military weaponry. They were labeled, "Rosie the Riveter" and were the first women to wear pants as part of their work uniforms. The minute their spouses came home from the war, all the "Rosies" returned to their former invisible status. In the US, Canada and the UK, these once very important assets to winning World War II were forced to hand over their jobs to men.

The growth of the Alpha Woman began with the rebellious women of the 1960s. Not only did they break all of the stereotypical rules their mothers demanded of them; but, they were the first "Viet Nam War Wives" to divorce men that war had so seriously changed for all time. These were the young women who were allowed to attend college. Albeit, most of their studies and degrees were limited to liberal arts. Few went on to medical school, took bar exams or became CEOs of their own businesses. Yet, the unrest among women throughout the 1960s, 70s and 80s was to spawn a generation of women who demanded equality and the removal of men in decisions that affected women's rights and their lives. Up to this time, all government legislation regarding women's rights was in the hands of men.

The Alpha Women Who Dared

The reality of Alpha Women everywher is that they dare to tread where "no man has gone before." For their bravery and courage, they are labeled "gender biased" because they support the female gender. When all is considered, it does seem rather obnoxious for men to continue to insist that women support only the male gender. Alpha women dare to be independent and rather than "Take Care of Me," they project the "I can take care of myself" image of the financially independent woman who makes her own decisions.

The most outstanding Alpha Women who followed in Geraldine Ferrara's footsteps are Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, New York Senator and U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Dancer Debby Allen, Actress Sharon Stone, CEO, actress and TV celebrity, Oprah Winfrey and Consumer Advocate Senator Elizabeth Warren. There are many, many more Alpha Women and their numbers are growing. These women will dare to overturn centuries of male dominance over female lives. Education plays a huge role in the advancements women make. In the words of the famed Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, "If you want something said, ask a man. If you want something done, ask a woman."

When Gender Bias is Gender Bashing

As more and more women begin to emerge as public figures, it becomes more evident that a double standard still exists. Some of the best of these examples are blatant or more subtle. For example, when men say, "She can't be trusted," what they really tell women is that they can't measure up to men's standards of "trust." Until you look at the enormous lack of trust men continue to exhibit in business and government. Some men say, "I'll vote for a woman, just not this woman." When the only other option is the male candidate? Worse are the men who insult female intelligence by patronizing the "little lady" by viewing her physical features before they listen to what she is saying. Or, by becoming conveniently deaf when women speak truths men have refused to confront for centuries.

Gender bias becomes gender bashing when it demeans women who possess the same education and job experience but are refused the same opportunities. Gender bias becomes gender bashing when a women of equal intelligence is relegated to the least important positions in business and government.

Most women agree this is not what we want for our daughters and granddaughters. We want their futures to be based entirely on their abilities. Not on their gender.

Feminist | Source


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    • Ewent profile imageAUTHOR

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 

      2 years ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      From a "man's" point of view? Things have changed. From a woman's point of view? They have NOT.

      For every $1 a licensed male MD earns, his female counterpart earns 79 cents. Change? Not since the 1980s has gender bias been more obvious an attempt by men to hang on for dear life to their male gender supremacy.

      So, let's see...From a woman's point of view, change? For the worse. Men in states like TX, AL, TN and the rest of DogPatch are still trying to shut down Planned Parenthood clinics and refusing to cover contraceptives through the same employer healthcare plans that cover MEN's Viagra.

      Then, of course, there's business itself...Walk into any hair salon these days and you see the truest form of gender bias...Women's hair cuts, no matter how short their hair may already be, costs upwards of $15 more than any man's.

      Gender bias in voting in the ultimate and final proof..over the span of 235+ years, men have dominated government, business, education and religion. Since 1916, when the 19th Amendment was passed giving women the right to vote, not a single man has EVER stepped up and put a female candidate out there...until the 1960s when some of the first women had to step up by themselves and step out front ALL by themselves.

      Sorry if the days of Masculinity blanketing the entire US are over. The only women today who can't live without a man's are the women still too financially man-dependent. The rest of the women bring in a second household income men have come to rely on. Perhaps, it was better when men had to be the "heads of household" and bring home only ONE paycheck and worry about the bills?

      The point is that the younger generation of men are moving all too slowly to understanding it is NOT gender that decides laws, business, governance, religion and education. It is personhood.

      When you die, your gender plays NO role in your death. You fly off into infinity from dust you were to dust you return..mostly cosmic dust.

    • profile image


      2 years ago

      Geraldine FerrarO ran for VP in the 1980s, while Sarah Palin ran in 2008. A lot of things change in an almost 25-year span.

    • Ewent profile imageAUTHOR

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 

      2 years ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      Sorry, I do not agree. Men have always had the right to vote in the US. Why? Men in the US outnumber women in government and big business.

      So to prove your post is gender biased by trying to imply women should just sit back, be patient and play waiting games while men move ahead like Energizer Bunny, here is a question for you:

      You are hired by a company without realizing the CEO is a female. She is earning 500 times what your salary will be...And she will expect you to work as hard as all the women in the company. Your attitude will be?

      Men, no matter what their race, culture or creed, continue that superiority act. When women speak, men conveniently go deaf. When women do the same, men bellow until they are heard in Siberia in hopes of not just forcing the woman to pay attention but to scare her silly. Not working anymore.

    • dashingscorpio profile image


      2 years ago


      Being an African American raised in a single parent household by my divorced mother there is no way I would tell women to shut up!

      I have no agenda against anyone!

      However I have noticed that people tend to hear what they want to hear and believe what they want to believe. Have I lied about anything I said?

      Whenever I have presented statistics that illustrate there has been progress whether it's to do with women, racism, or sexual orientation I'm often accused of somehow belittling a cause.

      Maybe I'm just a little more positive than some people.

      Is acknowledging progress a bad thing simply because not everything is as it should be? Must we bury our heads in the sand and act as if those who came before us that protested and in some instances died did so without (any) benefit to us or future generations?

      I personally know women who are proud to be known as feminist!

      One can never be free until they stop worrying about what other people think! A tiger never loses sleep over what sheep think.

      Having said that more often than not empathy elicits change over animosity.

      When MLK conducted non-violent marches it held up a mirror to the face of American society. Although (racism still exists) it would impossible to refute that 2016 is better than 1816 or 1963.

      The goal is to build on progress rather than deny there has been some.

      With regard to the presidency the U.S. has only had 44 presidents. There was a time when no would have thought we'd have an African American president!

      Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister of The U.K. in 1979, Angela Merkel is Chancellor of Germany, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf is president of Liberia, and Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner is president of Argentina.

      I have no doubt that we will have woman president whether it's Hillary Clinton or another woman. It's going to happen!

      I don't believe progress is a sinister tactic to pacify one but rather an inspiring fact which acknowledges it is possible.

    • Ewent profile imageAUTHOR

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 

      2 years ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      MsDora...Thank you. Here is an example of gender bashing. When women entered the formerly all male domain of the military, you'd think a nuclear warhead destroyed manhood on planet earth. Funny how women never minded men becoming nurses in hospitals or chefs in restaurants, even when men come home from their jobs and do very little cooking at home.

      It IS gender bashing to call any woman a "feminist" because it demonizes ALL women who dare to support their own gender to insure we have equal rights. When men call women "feminists," they do it to demonize any woman who won't "obey" like a good little puppy.

      I'm a "FAIRist" because I won't deal with men who game the system against women and can't play fair. I tell them straight out, "Please don't waste YOUR time or mine."

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      2 years ago from The Caribbean

      Your article is informative and insightful. You convinced me of the gender bias/bashing and the versatile use of the word 'fair.' Thank you for bringing this issue to light.

    • Ewent profile imageAUTHOR

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 

      2 years ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      When people post, "Over the years we have seen women governors, U.S. Senators, Congresswomen, Secretary of the State, Senate Majority Leader, and Attorney General," women hear this as "Shut up and be satisfied that we finally "Allowed" women to...." That part of your post only supports the less conscious male attitudes that "women must be thankful to be allowed" in positions men have held for far too long.

      And, the time line of those women in your post are ALL fairly recent. The first feminists who fought for the women's right to vote were bashed just like men today find "covert" ways to bash women when men want the jobs and titles women with equal education and experience vie for.

      Geraldine Ferrara's problem was the same as Hillary's. She was an Alpha woman who knew she could handle anything men in politics Nancy Pelosi whom men have also bashed.

      Elizabeth Warren will NEVER run for president. She has seen what the male dominated billionaire media does to Hillary. This is the same syndrome that exists with women who are raped. Women refuse to report it for fear the male faction will dig into their marrow to come up with anything to prove that "boys will be boys" and He said/She said makes her look like a tramp.

      As for Hillary, right now she is the ONLY woman on planet earth who dares to run. Sanders had the opportunity to run against his own gender in 2000 and 2004...he waited until he knew for certain Hillary planned to run...showing yet again that Sanders, like all men doesn't consider ANY woman male competition.

      Sarah Palin was only chosen to make it appear the GOP was not as anti-woman as all of their attempts to smash women's right prove they are.

      Condoleeza Rice, a former Texas Instruments CEO, turned professor, declined because she also knew that the male dominate press would eat her alive over her kissing up to Cheney and ignoring as the 9/11 Commission stated to her face, all of the memos that warned of an al Qaeda attack.

      When Anita Hill dared to take on SC Justice Thomas for his sexual escapades, she, NOT he, got the worst of that.

      I have a son who lived in Sweden for 15 years. In that country, the woman, not the man, is the head of household. Men in the US would go nuts if this was the rule here.

    • dashingscorpio profile image


      2 years ago

      I agree there has been an element of gender bashing. However one cannot deny there has been major progress considering women weren't even allowed to vote until the 19th amendment was ratified in 1919.

      What does Oracle Software, General Motors, Xerox, IBM, Hewlett Packard, PepsiCo, Yahoo, Lockheed Martin Corp., and General Dynamics have in common aside from being {Fortune 500} companies?

      The CEO for each of these companies is a woman!

      Over the years we've also seen women governors, U.S. Senators, Congresswomen, Secretary of the State, Senate Majority Leader, and Attorney General.

      With regard to past candidates for VP and president it has usually been the Republican party attacking women.

      Geraldine Ferrara's problem was being saddled with Walter Mondale who was Jimmy Carter's former VP. In 1984 Ronald Reagan was at the height of his popularity! No Democrat would have beaten Reagan.

      The economy was booming and no one believed Mondale has any chance of winning not even the DNC. Ronald Reagan won 49 out of the 50 states only losing in Minnesota where Mondale was from.

      In 2008 the Republicans attacked Hillary Clinton because they have always hated the Clintons. They thought if they got rid of her they could beat whomever would become the Democrat nominee.

      However what they didn't see coming with the youthful Obama was his message of change resonating with young people while the economy tanked into what is now called "The Great Recession", they didn't realize how unhappy people were with the continuing wars especially the invasion of Iraq. This was something Obama had voted against while Hillary had voted in favor just as John McCain did.

      I'm willing to bet if Elizabeth Warren was running against Hillary Clinton for the Democrat nomination instead of Bernie Sanders she would beat Hillary. In fact Hillary is not even carrying the young women's vote against Sanders. There is something other than gender that people don't like about Hillary Clinton.

      As for Sara Palin being on the VP ticket most people viewed that as desperate attempt by John McCain. No one would mistake her for being a top political mind. The RNC would have preferred Condoleezza Rice but she declined.


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