Don't Blame Carly Fiorina For Not Mentioning Women During The Republican Debate When It's Everyone's Responsibility
You might assume that prior to the fourth GOP debate, the Republican candidates had pretty much gone as far as they could go in terms of disparaging the entire female gender in one way or another. From archaic viewpoints on a woman's right to choose to just about every word that has come out of Donald Trump's mouth, the American people have suffered plenty. During Tuesday's debate, though, viewers experienced something possibly even worse: silence. But that doesn't mean viewers should look to Carly Fiorina to mention women merely because she's the lone female GOP candidate. Women should be a part of the conversation anyway.
Not even one significant reference was made toward women and their impact on the national economy over the course of the evening. Texas Sen. Ted Cruz made several references to hardworking men and women through a narrative about a woman who sued the IRS for regulations that targeted her tax preparation business. Florida Sen. Marco Rubio said Islamic terrorist groups like ISIS hate America because women are allowed to drive in the United States, among other reasons. Of everything said by the seven male candidates who partook in the primetime round, these were the only statements made which focused on females to even the slightest degree.
But, on Fiorina's part, we didn't see the former CEO rushing to turn the conversation specifically toward women at every opportunity. Similar to Cruz, Fiorina offered a personal anecdote about a woman who told Fiorina she was scared for her children's futures; Fiorina attributed these fears to problems caused by big government.
If you think it's Fiorina's responsibility to make sure women are a real part of the discussion, maybe this will change your mind. Fiorina has said that there should be no federal minimum wage, even though women make up two-thirds of minimum wage earners, and that she supports cutting Planned Parenthood funding. You likely won't see Fiorina battling to ensure at least a few words are exchanged on the gender pay gap or abortion rights, because improving them is not really part of her platform.
See, Fiorina shouldn't be the go-to speaker when moderators and candidates fail to address women's issues in the context of, say, the economy or national security. Yes, she's a woman. But the fact that women were barely mentioned during a two-hour discussion on the state of the country's economy is not her fault. It's everyone's fault.