Q&A #5: Mass. Is A Man's World

 Via email, "Conor" asks:


1. David Gregory asked Elizabeth Warren why a woman has never been elected governor or senator in Massachusetts. In your opinion, what is the reason?
2. The great majority of political reporters/commentators covering the race seem to be men (yourself, Gin Dumcius, Glen Johnson, Noah Bierman, Michael Levenson, Adam Reilly, Keller, Battenfeld, Braude, etc.etc.) and, without pointing fingers, I can't help but notice some bromance for Brown in the media.  (Also, all three moderators for the Senate debates have been men.) Do you feel like this mostly male cast is covering Warren fairly? Do you see any up and coming female political reporters in greater Boston bringing a fresh perspective?
Well, let's start off with this: Massachusetts tends to be, culturally, a very traditional, patriarchal society -- from Puritans to Brahmins to Irish-Catholic immigrants; from white-shoe law firms to police, fire, and trade unions. So there's that.
Then there was also this really, really, really long time when Ted & John were clogging up the Senate seats, so there really wasn't a whole lotta opportunity there.
And then, you know, there was this whole succession of tall, handsome Republican men who fit the Commonwealth's fiscal conservatism and social libertarianism pretty well, and who can resist that? (Well, OK, we resisted Charlie Baker, but we might not the second time.)
OK, on to the journo question. There actually are quite a few talented skirts (is that the right term these days?) covering the race, including Stephanie Ebbert, Hilary Chabot, Alison King, Janet Wu, Shira Schoenberg, Elysia Rodriguez, Sarah Birnbaum, and plenty more. (Who else? Name 'em in the comments!) I've seen some national-media broads drop in too. 
But yeah, overall it's a pretty male-tilted group. I think you have to separate out the blatantly biased, frat-boy nonsense-peddlers on the radio and in the Herald. And yeah, all of us slip into some lazy habits from time to time, which can certainly include a little sexism.
But overall I think Warren has gotten a reasonably fair shake, for what you're gonna get in this state regardless of your gender, orientation, or skin color. I frankly think the voters have been more biased by her gender -- pro and con -- than the media have been, at least so far.


| More

 Friends' Activity   Popular 
All Blogs
Follow the Phoenix
  • newsletter
  • twitter
  • facebook
  • youtube
  • rss
Latest Comments
Search Blogs
Talking Politics Archives