Three cheers for the women’s shelter Rosie’s Place. After comedian Sandra Bernhard openly suggested that Palin get gang raped while visiting New York City, the shelter decided that Bernhard’s sense of political action was not appropriate for women who have actually been raped and beaten:
The shelter’s public relations director, Leemarie Mosca, said many women at the shelter have been victims of violence — and violence against women is not a laughing matter.
Bernhard made the comments during her one-woman show in Washington D.C. last month before Palin campaigned in New York. Bernhard said Palin would be “gang-raped by my big black brothers” during a diatribe in which she also criticized Palin for opposing abortion rights.
Often in this campaign, and really over the last ten years, we’ve often wondered where real feminists went after ugly eruptions like Bernhard’s. The idea that a supposed feminist would legitimize rape as a political weapon is so disgusting that a more naïve observer would expect a torrent of outrage from Bernhard’s fellow feminists in response. Instead, their silence stands as an indictment of them as feminists, and as human beings.
Whoever Rosie’s Place finds to replace Bernhard will be an upgrade. They have nowhere to go but up. Their stand challenges others who profess to stand for the advancement of women to publicly rebuke Bernhard. Where exactly is Gloria Steinem these days?