New: REGIONAL REPORT: Developers win with “smart growth” rule

Zelda Bronstein
Wednesday March 23, 2016 - 10:33:00 AM

New rules would make it harder to raise environmental challenges to projects that cause urban congestion. -more-

AGAINST FORGETTING: US Presidential Race: the Feminist Generation Gap

Ruth Rosen
Friday March 18, 2016 - 12:28:00 PM

Why is there strong support for Bernie Sanders from young feminists and a tepid response to Hillary Rodham Clinton, a lifelong feminist? Why has a feminist generational gap emerged in 2016?

Actually, it’s happened before. Each generation of feminists has redefined what they meant by feminism, often in reaction to their mothers’ feminist priorities. After women won the vote in 1920, for example, young women who came of age in the 20’s and 30’s viewed suffragists - who had fought for 72 years for the vote - as dowdy matrons who wore sensible shoes. What thrilled them was the personal freedom to explore new sexual and social mores and the opportunity to forge new careers.

When second-wave feminists revived the women’s movement in the late 1960’s, their redefinition of feminism strongly rejected their mother’s lives. Even if their own mothers worked outside the home, young feminists vilified the cultural symbol of the Feminine Mystique, which cast women as mere housewives who should stay at home and live through the identities of their husbands and children.

What second-wave feminists achieved was monumental. The laws they passed, as well as the customs they changed, transformed the opportunities for a new generation of women. Young women know this, but like generations of before them, they are not particularly fired up by what their mother’s generation achieved almost half a century ago.

Now, a new feminist generational gap is challenging the Democratic party’s unity the 2016 election. As the New York Times recently summarized, “The poll numbers and primary results so far tell a simple story: Younger Democratic women are mostly for Bernie Sanders; older women lean more toward Hillary Clinton.” Depending on the state or region, young feminists under 45 years of age are passionate supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders, the 74-year old self-identified socialist Senator from Vermont. In some states, they have given him 60-80 percent of the entire female Democratic vote. At the same time, women over 45 have demonstrated far greater enthusiasm for Hillary Clinton.

So why does a 73 year-old Senator from Vermont stir the passions of so many young feminists? When asked, they cite his radical platform - free tuition, a single payer health system, and a genuine disgust with the wealth inequality that has crushed their own dreams, as well as the lives of the poor and minorities. Many know that Republicans will never pass his legislative agenda. That is not the point. What matters is that they share his values and convictions, including his welcoming hand to refugees who seek safety in the United States.

Also important, Sanders does not remind them of their mothers, even though he could be their grandfather.

For many young feminists, Hillary Clinton belongs to the past. She is a formerFirst Lady, a former Senator, a former candidate for President and a formerSecretary of State. Although she has spent a lifetime supporting gender equality, child care, wage equity, paid parental leave and famously redefined women’s rights as human rights in 1995, all this feels as old as their mothers’ tales of the Sixties. They are repelled by her ties to Wall Street and the fact that she supported the Iraq War.

Some older women, moreover, have alienated Sanders’ young supporters by speaking about them with contempt. Madeleine Albright, 78, the first female secretary of state, told young women, “We can tell our story of how we climbed the ladder, and a lot of you younger women think it’s done…“Well, It’s not done. And just remember that there is a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other!” Gloria Steinem, 81, a feminist icon, uncharacteristically dissed young women when she explained that “younger women back Sanders just so they can meet young men.” (Both have since apologized but the damage lingers).

Young feminists, moreover have redefined what they mean by feminism. Jemma Soldati, a 25 year old who works in marketing and comedy, explains, “When my mother says she’s going to vote for Hillary Clinton because she’s a woman, to me that is identity politics at its worst. It’s putting the value of a female president over the value of a president with your values.”

Liz Phillips, a 28 year-old editor and documentarian, wrote in an email, that “It is because of the battles that women like Madeline Albright fought, that I am now able to access the education, the information, and the experience needed in order to make informed decisions, but I will not be bullied by her recent vitriolic religious depictions of “a special place in hell.”

Although she appreciates what older feminists achieved, she believes “that Sanders’ economic platform is the only one that has the capability to raise the quality of life for 99% of Americans. And I don’t want a president who will tell me that actually implementing these goals is impractical, because then all hope is truly lost.”

Listen closely and you hear echoes of the Occupy movement, voices that publicized the economic distress of the 99 percent, and protesters who really do mean that “Black Lives Matters.”

Sometimes the debates even among young women turn fierce. At some colleges, Clinton supporters try to keep a low profile. “It’s like the

tension you can often see between daughters and their mothers,” says Roxanne Euben, who teaches feminist political theory at Wellesley college. “Daughters are saying, ‘Just because you say this is what it means to be a committed feminist, doesn’t mean I’m going to do this.’” Euben further points out, quite accurately, “that the one consistent feature of feminism for the past century is that it’s always been up for debate.” -more-

THE PUBLIC EYE:Clinton vs. Trump: Consider Three Factors

Bob Burnett
Friday March 18, 2016 - 12:04:00 PM

The dust has cleared from the March 15th primaries and it’s clear Hillary Clinton will be the Democratic presidential nominee. It’s less clear if the Republican nominee will be Donald Trump or a forced “marriage” orchestrated by GOP leaders. Nonetheless, three factors will determine who wins on November 8th. -more-

ON MENTAL ILLNESS: Antipsychotic Medications and Unfairness

Jack Bragen
Friday March 18, 2016 - 11:57:00 AM

Antipsychotic medications can cause breast enlargement in men, facial hair in women, involuntary movements of the mouth face and neck and upper body that are irreversible, diabetes, weight gain, and muscle rigidity. Less often, antipsychotic medications can cause loss of white blood cells [potentially fatal], and, in some instances, sudden, unexplained death. -more-