GRAY IN L.A.
When last week all female hell broke loose because of that now famous "nasty woman" quip -- some call it a compliment, coming from Trump -- it was also mixed with some misgivings for me.
How can it be that a derogatory label for a woman is also seen as an honor and a triumph? Answer: Because they're used to it. It's an old tradition. And because women are creative and take what they can get. They have learned to make blessings out of intended curses. That's our talent.
It is easy these days to be threatening to men. It's become clearer every day that we are real, that we can be brilliant and brainy, do difficult things, that we have enormous talents and strengths -- something that most of us are actually planning to use in our lifetime. So, to no one's surprise that brings out not the gentleman but the raving mad animal out in men who see their dominance melt away faster than the North Pole. And let's not kid ourselves. Words are powerful, even if they are only forced onto you by envious, ill-spirited sexists, bullies and inferior men.
Women have been bad-mouthed since the beginning of time because, well, I guess it was all Eve's fault. They were seductive and sinful, guilty of deception and betrayal, leading men to their ruin. They became hussies, whores, bad girls, sluts, bimbos, she-devils, bitches, witches, fishwives, tramps, temptresses, sirens, amazons, dames, ditzes, home-wreckers, and last not least the "c" word. Women swallowed and swallowed, ducked, hid their face, felt ashamed, devalued, punished.
And that's probably not all over since shaming is still a useful weapon.
Women like Indira Gandhi, Golda Meir, Margret Thatcher and Angela Merkel were belittled and insulted; the 1984 vice president nominee Geraldine Ferraro was called "something that rhymes with rich"- - meaning witch -- or so George W. Bush's Mom Barbara said sheepishly (although she herself probably qualified for that word better than anybody else), proving that women can be indeed "nasty."
But what's new is that they now are learning to play the word game, turn it into their advantage, discover political humor -- not new shame -- and laughingly declare victory, not defeat. Women used to steal hearts, now they steal words, give them a new meaning and own them! Words used to hurt, now they just bore and backfire! So the real triumph and the real emancipation is that women have risen above the names, the accusations, the put downs.
So, call us what you want. We don't care!
The more women laugh off insults and negative names for them, the more they will become themselves, meaning independent creatures. And hopefully will be known one fine day for nothing more and nothing less than just one word without anything affixed to it (not even the word "feminist") -- which is: WOMEN.
Could it be that a bad word might help in catapulting Hillary Clinton to victory? How cool is that! Thanks, Don -- what's his name again?