Seventy-seven percent of American women support restricting abortion to the first 12 weeks of a baby’s gestation, a higher percentage than the 74 percent of all supporting Americans. Fifty-nine percent of American women believe abortion is morally wrong. Sixty-one percent of American women oppose using tax dollars to pay for abortions.
Forty percent of American women own a gun or live with someone who does. Forty-five percent of American women who don’t own guns say they could see themselves doing so in the future. Those two groups thus comprise two-thirds of American women.
It is thus clear from statistics like these that being pro-life and pro-gun is not only extremely common among American women, but might actually encompass a clear majority of us. Yet among all daytime television shows, there is only one representative for these views, and that’s “The View’s” Meghan McCain. (McCain is the wife of The Federalist’s cofounder.)
Rather than being heralded for standing alone for the views of millions of American women who otherwise don’t see themselves represented on the very TV shows women overwhelmingly watch, McCain is routinely singled out for scorn. Most recently, she was the target of a nasty New York Times hit piece on Jan. 16.
“It has become the norm to watch Ms. McCain, the daughter of the late Senator John McCain, square off against her co-hosts in a barrage of vehement exchanges — leveraging her political parentage, accusing her co-hosts of supporting infanticide, using her platform to push back against assault weapons bans and progressive immigration policy. The increasingly aggressive rejoinders by her co-hosts have escalated to the daytime TV equivalent of a cage fight for the viewing public,” writes Shamira Ibrahim.
Yes, it is very clear that several cohosts despise McCain and compulsively gang up on her for aggressively voicing what a possible majority of American women think. In so doing, they display not only their contempt for her, but for the American women whose views she represents.
Ibrahim even makes that dynamic explicit, and in vicious language that would generate cries of “sexism!” if it weren’t applied to a woman who identifies with the political right: “For some viewers, Ms. McCain is the privileged product of conservative nepotism, capitalism and the American military-industrial complex. That coalescence naturally renders her a villain to progressives, who envision her as the cathartic personification of a punching bag on social media.”
Perhaps what they hate most about McCain is that she refuses to roll over and offer herself as a willing sacrifice to this pack of howling hyenas. She growls right back. How dare she, when the proper response to a demanded privilege check is whimpering, paw-licking submission!
Ibrahim also made both dynamics quite clear in her response to McCain on social media following the article’s publication.
So, for the record, Ibrahim agreed that she wishes “red state, pro life, pro-Second Amendment conservative women” — again, if not the majority of the nation’s women, a huge plurality of us — would just go away. There’s democracy for you. There’s some of that “civil discourse” she whines about McCain’s “View” appearances torpedoing. Apparently civility is also only for women on the left.
Then Ibrahim went on to make an incoherent statement that appears to say that somehow her sex and race should shield her from disagreement with both her professional work and private opinions. Say what you want against Meghan McCain, but she is not a public personality who retreats when called out over her performance. She instead strides out, spins, and fires. She can take it, and she can dish it out. Ibrahim, it appears, can sustain neither, and neither can McCain’s cohosts. That’s really the issue here.
Ibrahim’s critique of McCain’s job performance pretends the reason for their on-air discord is the presence of someone with mainstream views disrupting their cozy little “women love abortion” club. She’s the problem, you see, not the fact that everyone else on daytime television is completely out of touch with vast numbers of Americans on key social issues and hates to be reminded of that fact.
“In the early days of her arrival, the conservative commentator’s on-air spats made for fun TV. Now, it’s just exhausting,” Ibrahim complains. She concludes the article circling back to that sentiment: “with Ms. McCain still on the show, there’s not much to enjoy.”
Now, I also don’t enjoy watching what Ibrahim describes as a “cage match” and “pro wrestling.” I hate when the cohosts yell at each other and over each other and the other hosts surround McCain with their teeth bared while the audience cheers it all on. That’s not something I’d like to listen to while sipping coffee and folding the laundry, although it’s probably good for ratings. I would like to listen to people like Sen. Elizabeth Warren explain themselves and answer McCain’s questions in a genuinely civil dialogue.
The problem here is that too many high-platform lefties don’t appear to think they need to answer questions while they monopolize the airwaves, an uncivil tactic Ibrahim praised when Warren did it and then based half her article on complaining about when McCain did it. They just need to tell us what to think while we all obediently shut up and clap. But McCain won’t shut up, so her cohosts either ignore her or shout over her rather than engaging her ideas. And then The New York Times joins the dogpile, blaming the person they’re all trying to smash.
Meanwhile, American women out here in flyover country continue to have our ideas ignored or, when we somehow manage to escape our cones of silence, ridiculed, attacked, and ostracized as if we’re not millions strong.