I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. When dealing with a woman in power, a large part of the criticism is nearly always directed at her appearance. If they find her attractive they bandy around terms like “MILF” and “Babe,” and usually conclude that she is therefore less intelligent. If there is any physical “flaw” it is seized upon with relish as a reflection of her character. How often have we seen Michelle Obama judged by her clothes, height, build and face instead of her intelligence? In the current Supreme Court nomination process, how much of the cyberspace discussion surrounds the physical appearance of the female nominees? Are women held to a literal double standard of both skill and appearance? Is having a picturesque leader now more important than an intelligent one? Can a mole magically suck governing skills from a human brain?
Paul Campos summarizes it nicely on The Daily Beast. He also tops it with what may just be the perfect quote, which is what originally caught my eye on Shapely Prose:
"For some men, the only thing more intolerable than the sight of a powerful woman is the sight of a powerful woman they don’t want to sleep with."
- Paul Campos