Friday, July 05, 2013

The Beauty of Texas State Senator Wendy Davis

State Senator Wendy Davis, a Texas Democrat is an attractive woman, a graduate of Harvard Law and tough as nails. She proved the last point by filibustering an anti-choice measure, for which she was required to use a catheter. But what’s the point of mentioning that she is an attractive woman?

It turns out that Conservatives are being dismissive of her because of her looks. A new website called “The Real Wendy Davis” has exposed Davis as "the first woman ever to look hotter than her 1991 yearbook photo." She's described as a Surgically Constructed “Human Barbie Doll”
"Most people — at least those without a plastic surgeon on retainer — do not become more good looking as they age from their late 20s to their early 50s. Without extreme artificial intervention, even the luckiest among us — those blessed with good genes who exercise prudence toward their physical safety and health (for example, by avoiding guns and alcohol) — can at most aim to delay life’s inevitable physical decline, and come close to maintaining their good looks." 
What these buffoons do not understand is that women like Senator Davis mature and grow as they move from their 20’s to their 50’s. Just like men, they acquire a well-defined sense of self as they accumulate accomplishments, and build self confidence. They discover what is important to them, and they figure out how to pursue it with purpose and determination. Their values crystallize, and if these are values of caring and concern, they exude a sense of power that is charismatic. This is what is so attractive about Senator Davis. 

It’s also true that Senator Davis showed tremendous grace and poise, as, for example, when she responded to Rick Perry’s mean-spirited attack on her which brought up the fact that she was raised by a single mother, and had a child out of wedlock. The contrast between these two Texas politicians highlighted another quality of the Senator’s appeal, but we cannot tell from the 1991 photo if this, too, was acquired with experience.

Conservatives who attack her because she is more attractive than she was when she sat for her yearbook photo 22 years ago imagine that the apex of womanly beauty is youthful inexperience, and powerlessness. A woman in her 20’s is near the height of her fertility, and those who see woman as only useful in the reproduction process, naturally see this stage of a woman’s growth as the pinnacle of her beauty. 

It is easy to dismiss the caviling of conservatives about Senator Davis’s looks as the carping of guttersnipes. I think it reveals in sharp relief the disdain with which they regard women with power and accomplishment.

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