Obama Now Includes "Women" in "Issues" Section of Website

I wrote 2 Diaries about this issue in the past month... and I've sent the Obama campaign numerous emails since January asking them to explain to me why "Women" didn't warrant a category under the "Issues" section of his campaign website. All "Women" issues were under the "People" section. Personally, I found that completely unacceptable. It bothered me tremendously.

Clearly, my tiny voice was not alone. I'm sure there were thousands of women who felt equally slighted by this.

Today "Women" IS A CATEGORY under the "Issues" pull-down menu on the Obama campaign website. The last time I looked this was NOT the case (perhaps a week ago?), but it has been changed!

I think this is a smart move by Obama as Hillary Clinton's female supporters begin to look more closely at him.

Clearly his campaign staff DID recognize that this was deserving of a redesign and that "Women" warranted a listing under "Issues" (unlike the Obama supporters here who frankly belittled and dismissed my concerns as petty and hair-splitting everytime I raised them).

Good for Obama. It does make me feel better to see these issues proudly, clearly front-and-center... as they should be on ANY Democratic candidate's platform!

Here were my old diaries championing for this issue (and the responses I received) if anyone is interested:

http://www.mydd.com/story/2008/5/9/19271 8/5358
Obama and Women's Reproductive Freedom

http://www.mydd.com/story/2008/5/19/1884 4/9078
Obama "Buries" NARAL Endorsement

Tags: issues, obama, Women (all tags)

Comments

41 Comments

Thank you for pointing out something

that you would have thought the Obama campaign would have figured out all on its own.

Keep up the battle.  It's obviously needed!

by CoyoteCreek 2008-05-27 07:14AM | 0 recs
Thanks Coyote Creek

I feel like I won a tiny victory this morning!

Obama has got a learning curve, no doubt about it. He is not my first choice by any means... but I do want him to be my second choice.

Moves like this by the Obama campaign, showing an ability to modify and clarify, do help... however symbolic this change may seem to others, this issue REALLY stuck in my craw. It also bugged me to see fellow Democrats defending the fact that Women's issues had been marginalized. These issues affect everyone... especially women, children and families, but the impact of freedom to choose if, when, how and why why reproduce upon every aspect of our society is immeasurable.

by twinmom 2008-05-27 07:24AM | 0 recs
They wont admit they changed anything

They will claim women were always an issue.

Just like they changed their healthcare plan. They pretended it had always been that way and they made no pretenses that they cared enough to show how to pay for it (or address the way it would make prices for everyone go up)  

Obviously, they think we are really stupid.

by architek 2008-05-27 07:35AM | 0 recs
Re: They wont admit they changed anything

Way to take a positive change that someone appreciated and turn it into a negative.  BTW, I think Hillary's "healthcare plan" is a non-starter and its one of the three reasons I am supporting Obama over Hillary.  Just because someone has a different policy position than you doesn't mean they think you are stupid, nor should it be vice versa.  And just because someone clarifies, fleshes out, or otherwise matures a position doesn't mean they think you are stupid.  It just means they are open to different ideas and incorporating those that might be better.  This isn't a weakness, it's a sign of leadership.

by kasjogren 2008-05-27 07:39AM | 0 recs
Re: They wont admit they changed anything

This guy is a troll. He pastes the same few arguments in every thread, trying to spam them. Just ignore him, he hates that especially.

by ragekage 2008-05-27 07:40AM | 0 recs
Re: They wont admit they changed anything

Gee, I don't see anything like it in the past twenty or so things he's posted.  Care to revise and extend your remarks?

by reenactor 2008-05-27 09:53AM | 0 recs
Re: They wont admit they changed anything

I'm assuming this is snark?

by ragekage 2008-05-27 10:05AM | 0 recs
Re: They wont admit they changed anything

No, as in I seriously took one minute out of my life to check evidence before accepting what you wrote.  In fact, you're wrong.  Please check yourself.

by reenactor 2008-05-27 11:07AM | 0 recs
I agree - except that Obama will not be

my second choice.

If he couldn't understand that women were important from the very beginning he has done nothing to earn my vote.

by CoyoteCreek 2008-05-27 08:50AM | 0 recs
Re: I agree - except that Obama will not be

Enjoy your (or your wife's or daughter's) coat hanger collection under McCain.

by ProgressiveDL 2008-05-27 09:10AM | 0 recs
Words from a wonderful person

I 'know" and respect and agree with:

"As for Roe v Wade...

If my younger sisters lose Roe Wade it will be their own fault for taking the rights they have for granted, because they didn't fight for them. They are complacent and can take the time to swoon over a sexy empty suit who has already set gender relations back a minimum of 30 years, and we haven't even gotten to the General Election campaign yet. Serves them right. Not my problem. I know how not to get pregnant.

It's my job to protect the rights I fought for that matter to me. This is a misogynist's campaign and if younger women are too busy spawning over Leland Gaunt handing out Needful Things and discussing his vibrating phone when he leans on one of them, then they will have to learn to take the consequences of their own folly along with the consolations. Maybe then they will Get It. I have already done well in my life. Complacency is their enemy, not mine. Let em eat cell phones."

by CoyoteCreek 2008-05-27 10:22AM | 0 recs
I take it..

you didn't actually read that part of his website?

Otherwise, any rational person wouldn't complain about it.

by Massadonious 2008-05-27 07:19AM | 0 recs
In reply I will simply

Re-write what I said in this diary:

"Clearly his campaign staff DID recognize that this was deserving of a redesign and that "Women" warranted a listing under "Issues" (unlike the Obama supporters here who frankly belittled and dismissed my concerns as petty and hair-splitting everytime I raised them)."

by twinmom 2008-05-27 07:28AM | 0 recs
Okay..

I'll admit that I did jump the gun without fully reading what you had to say, and for that I apologize.

And, I'm glad that he did decide to put something like that on his website. It was probably needed.

But, are you trying to say that he should of put something up sooner?

by Massadonious 2008-05-27 07:36AM | 0 recs
Re: Okay..

It was already on his website, just in a different section - under "People" rather than "Issues."

by mistersite 2008-05-27 07:43AM | 0 recs
Re: Okay..

Ahh, I see.

Guess I should visit his site more often. Haven't been there since around when he won Iowa.

by Massadonious 2008-05-27 07:54AM | 0 recs
I agree that it's smart...

...but worrying about menu classification seems a little silly.

I mean, "People" is a generalized term, but it should be okay... Women ARE "people," right?  That's the definition of feminism, is it not?

by Dracomicron 2008-05-27 07:28AM | 0 recs
But, for example

The issues of "Stem Cell Research" could previously only be found under "People/Women". That seemed absurd to me since that is clearly not simply a "People/Women" issue?

On the flip side... African Amercians are also listed under "People" but every single one of the topics listed in that category are also addressed under "Issues". That was NOT the case with many of the "Women" Topics until now.

I can see your point, and perhaps these issues would be better served by a heading of "Personal Choice", "Personal Freedom" or "Separation of Church and State", "A Commitment to Secular Government / Personal Choice"?

I actually DO like Obama's "Women" Platform. My abjection was to why it was not more front-and-center.

In any case, it makes me feel better to see a whole host of issues I care about in his main "Issues" category.

For me, not having these issues addressed in ANY way under the "Issues" section left a question in my mind as to if this were a case of Obama not wanting controversial issues front-and-center. Especially in light of all his talk about faith and values and courting religious voters and swing-Republicans etc.

by twinmom 2008-05-27 07:39AM | 0 recs
I'm with you on that

Obama's got the best website of any presidential candidate, ever, and I suppose that it's imput like yours that makes it continue to evolve.

If Obama wins this election, it will be partially because he used the internet to get his message out better than his rivals were able to use it to smear him.

by Dracomicron 2008-05-27 07:43AM | 0 recs
Just thinking more about your point here

I actually WOULD have preferred that (when I first looked for issues such as abortion, adoption etc) that I had found them under more GENERAL headings. When I first perused Obama's site, for example, I looked first under "Family"... then "Healthcare"... then "Additional Issues". That was when I thought "HUH?!?" That was why it took me so long originally to find these issues under "People/Women"... because I EXPECTED them to be listed somewhere under "Issues" and kept searching for them there.

My "cause" wasn't to champion having a separate "Women" section under "Issues" but rather to simply have these issues dealt with SOMEWHERE in the "Issues" section... see what I mean?

You're 100% right that the most "equal" handling of this stuff would be to weave it into the other categories... since these issues do affect people besides women. So, for example, Women's Reproductive Freedom and Stem Cell Research could simply be under "Healthcare" and adoption, childcare issues etc could be under "Family".

I disagree with you that it is "silly". It really isn't. I do agree with you that Obama's website is good... but it is exactly the exhaustive and detailed nature of it which opens these cans-of-worms for him as well. He has a mile-long list of "Issues"... so any absent ones stand out like a "sore thumb".

by twinmom 2008-05-27 08:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Just thinking more about your point here

Point taken.

by Dracomicron 2008-05-27 08:42AM | 0 recs
Re:

so they did discuss women, it was just under People, but you were offended that they considered women equal as any other person and women needed their own special category?

shurgs not even big enough of a deal for me to care.

I would think as long as they talked about it that would be important, not the category label. but thats my opinion

by TruthMatters 2008-05-27 07:33AM | 0 recs
Your title

Oh. One more thing.  I am not sure your title conveys what you intend it to.  "Bumps" generally indicates downgrading.  I'd recommend 'elevates', or 'lifts', or 'places', or perhaps the best option might be 'includes'.  But this is just a sympathetic quibble.  No presumption intended.

by Strummerson 2008-05-27 07:38AM | 0 recs
You're right

I changed the title... thanks for the suggestion!

by twinmom 2008-05-27 07:42AM | 0 recs
Re: You're right

Glad to be of help.

by Strummerson 2008-05-27 07:46AM | 0 recs
Uhm..

Well, the "people" bit is more like a targeted blog, while the issues bit is policy positions. It's good that women get their own section (I'd appreciate a "men" section as well - we have our own issues to deal with too), but having a quick glance at it it's mostly parts that were either already included in his other policy areas or a more clear pronouncement of his positions (on choice and stuff) which were already pretty well known.

I suppose it's nice to have everything in one place.

by grass 2008-05-27 07:40AM | 0 recs
Re: Uhm..

I don't see this happening, though. I agree. I've has sole custody of my daughter since she was born- her mom decided she "wasn't ready" to take care of a baby- but my lawyer tells me if she got the gumption to try and sue for custody, she'd have an excellent shot at getting at least 50%, for no other reason than she's a woman. And I've been denied some monetary aid available to low-income single parents because it's geared for... yep, you guessed it- women.

I hate to whine about stuff like that, because I don't have it that bad, but it does matter to me.

by ragekage 2008-05-27 07:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Uhm..

I'm a Clinton supporter, but I mojo'd your comment.

Even if I disagree with the blanket generalization in your comment.

by optimisticBoy 2008-05-27 07:50AM | 0 recs
I agree with you

We're actually coming at this same argument from 2 directions... that these issues are too important to relegate them to "People/Women"... they affect every aspect of our society and are not limited to women.

I'd be thrilled to see a more general heading applied to a topic which covered Reproductive Freedom (abortion, adoption, stem cell research, infertility treatment etc).

To me these issues ABSOLUTELY bleed over into single parent families (no matter who the primary caregiver is)... as well as LGBT families and families where relative other than the biological parents are the primary caregivers (grandparents etc).

by twinmom 2008-05-27 07:55AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama

Well, Senator Obama is an intelligent person. If that's what people like you wanted to see represented, why wouldn't he want to change his platform to fit it? One of the things that drew me to Senator Obama was that, above all else, he listened- and really listened, not just waiting for his turn to talk again listen, but took the time to listen to what your concern was, because if you were sharing it with him, it had to be deeply held.

I'm sure Senator Clinton would've hopefully done the same, vice versa.

by ragekage 2008-05-27 07:43AM | 0 recs
Shrug

Duplicitous, half-hearted opportunism.

by optimisticBoy 2008-05-27 07:46AM | 0 recs
Nicely done

Nice job, Twinmom.  

And nice job, Obama, for being responsive to peoples concerns.  That's going to be a very refreshing change to have a responsive President.

by map 2008-05-27 07:54AM | 0 recs
I don't get it

I don't understand how this is even an issue for you.  It seems like you're picking at straws. And weak ones at that.  Women are people, therefore, the people section makes sense for a place to put women's issues.  

by brathor 2008-05-27 09:13AM | 0 recs
Nice Job!

Congrats, twinmom, way to make yourself heard.

And kudos to Obama and his team for being responsive and open-minded to change

by NeverNude 2008-05-27 09:23AM | 0 recs
kudos to twinmom and Obama

by catchaz 2008-05-27 09:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Obama Now Includes "Women"

I'm glad you are more satisfied and are beginning to find out what many of us have experienced - that the campaign is open to criticism and constructive comments.  It is and has been remarkably responsive.  I believe the initial placement of the Women's issues in People was always more strategic than indicative of the importance the candidate placed on them.  Running against a woman candidate, they have tried to build up their Women for Obama groups and having people like you be forced into that area of the website to find issue based answers was merely an organizational strategy.

But now that you are perhaps more open, I'd like to challenge you on your assertion that his response to the question of when life begins during the CNN Faith Forum was "equivocation".  For too long we've been content to merely stand our ground on abortion - the law is on our side until it is overturned. But the screaming and the opposition will persist, and with that a chance of reversal, unless we start to engage the opposition on their terms or at least in their language.  I thought his answer was brilliant - I don't presume to know when life begins, is it when the soul stirs.  Oddly enough the two arguments, Science vs. Religion, lead us to the exact opposite positions than what is currently staked out.  The more scientific approach heads us more to conception, but religious arguments are hard pressed to associate cells and souls.  To talk about the beginning of life in terms of souls as presumptuous for Man to determine is a winnable argument on their terms and leads us to a rational abortion policy quite different than what the opposition wants.

by Piuma 2008-05-27 09:53AM | 0 recs
I respectfully disagree

I far preferred Hillary Clinton's answer on that... which acknowledged a component of faith, religion, spirituality to these issues... but CLEARLY reiterated that our government MUST be secular if we wish to truly preserve the freedom of all people to exercise their own free will and freedom of choice when it comes to matters of privacy. I especially liked her acknowledgment that the question of when life begins cannot (and should not) be separated from the rest of the lives involved in and affected by these personal decisions and freedoms.

I do not like when Obama frames the debate as a moral, ethical or religious issue as the reason why people disagree. I think it must be argued as a PRIVACY issue... as a PERSONAL FREEDOM issue... as a SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE issue. To me, that is where the disagreement lies. No one is forcing individuals who are morally opposed to abortion, or birth control or infertility treatments to participate in them... and yet the opposite is not true, there ARE those who would impose their morality on my personal freedom of choice.

In my opinion, Democratic candidates must operate from the point of view that the ONLY way to co-exist when it comes to issues which have a moral weight or religious component is to embrace a SECULAR government which accepts that different people have widely differing views, different guiding morality, different religions (including no religion).

by twinmom 2008-05-27 10:07AM | 0 recs
Re: I respectfully disagree

First off, Obama takes a back seat to no one when it comes to constitutional issues so put that out of your mind.  But your argument is not persuasive with the opposition because the concept of Murder has both a moral and a privacy component.  All sorts of our laws are rooted in morality and religion tempered by individual rights.  We can talk in religious terms while still holding to a separation of church and state.  As progressives we must because much of what we believe in terms of social programs are rooted in the moralistic or religious belief that we are our brothers keepers, we are our sisters keepers.  

by Piuma 2008-05-27 10:54AM | 0 recs
Well

I disagree that morality needs to be discussed in specific religious terms in a secular society. Morality can exist in the absence of religion... your example of "brothers keeper" is a prime example of that.

But I absolutely do see your point that our government must be and is often guided by a general sense of non-secular human morality in defining the laws, rules and punishments which define our society. Yes, of course.

But I'm not trying to be "persuasive with the opposition" with my argument. Personally, I'm perfectly comfortable with the defensive stance of protecting these rights from attacks from the far right. The morality component of these issues HAS already been decided by law. It may sound inflexible, but I'm not looking for compromise on these issues. I'm looking to maintain the gains we've already made and protect them from those whose aim it is to undermine and chip away at them. I'm a hard-liner when it comes to these freedoms of Reproductive Choice and privacy. I don't want a debate over when life begins to influence these laws and protections when it comes to abortion or infertility treatment.

I recognize that to be a difference between Clinton and Obama. He wants to find some common ground (or at least appear open-minded / fair-minded). That is less important to me personally than defending these rights. If he can defend these rights while being less confrontational, great (the catch-more-flies-with-honey approach). But if he starts giving things up, compromising, making concessions... I will be extremely frustrated (to say the least).

But, in the end, clearly McCain is more disastrous on these issues. I absolutely 100% recognize that.

by twinmom 2008-05-27 12:17PM | 0 recs
Re: Well

What was so truly disturbing about the attack on his present votes was that it was an attempt to make it appear he had compromised when he had in fact found a common ground to protect the rights without giving up anything but the grandstanding.  I understand your position but until we get the opposition to stand down, we are always just a bad election away from serious erosion. His support is rock solid because it is not just rooted in the constitution but is also rooted in religion.  He knows how to argue on religious grounds for the wisdom of the separation of church and state because he understands the document was created by men who were firmly religious.  It's why you hear him speak of empathy so much because empathy has to allow room for all religions, and no religion.  Christianity is at its heart liberal but we have allowed political discourse in religious circles to be hijacked by conservatives.  Obama aims to get them back which will ultimately help guarantee all of our personal freedoms.

If your really interested in this area and/or concerned, you might be want to read this speech he gave at a Christian conference:

http://www.sojo.net/index.cfm?action=mag azine.article&mode=printer_friendly& amp;issue=soj0611&article=061110

by Piuma 2008-05-27 12:52PM | 0 recs
I still say time will tell

Honestly, I cannot see the day when the opposition will stand down... I simply don't see that happening, no matter how open and reasonable the discussion.

Since you raised the issue of the present votes... to me, the present votes said more about the far right than about Obama... most of those bills were clearly "gotcha" politics coming from the far right. But Obama himself has said that we must stand firmly and unequivocally in the face of such transparent threats:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/article s/2007/02/the_everpresent_obama.html
In the Audacity of Hope (page 130), Obama explained that even as a legislator in the minority, "You must vote yes or no on whatever bill comes up, with the knowledge that it's unlikely to be a compromise that either you or your supporters consider fair and or just."

I do think that Democratic politicians have an obligation to take a firm stand. I understand that IL has different procedures than the Senate and so I am willing to cut Obama some slack here. The fact remains, however, that a US Senator cannot vote present... and neither can a President. So, time will tell how he manages to walk to line on these issues. He certainly cannot manage to please everyone. Go read the comments on the pro-life blog group on his campaign website and you'll see what I mean... those people hope to convert him. In the end, someone will be disappointed with either the "common ground" he finds of the lack of it.

I had read that article you linked to before somewhere else... is it on his website under Faith? Obama's whole religion / government argument doesn't hold much sway for me personally, although I can see its appeal for many. It doesn't turn me off per-se, but it doesn't turn me on either. How's that?

I do agree with you 100% that progressive liberals should be able to steer the discussion back into our court, we do have the moral highground on issues of poverty, the environment, anti-war, empathy, compassion, equality, civil rights etc.

by twinmom 2008-05-27 01:29PM | 0 recs

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