April 8, 2013

In light of a new study claiming that the mere mention of a female candidate’s appearance diminishes her political standing, check out how ABC News vet Barbara Walters, in an interview with then-Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, both asks about her hair and deplores the media’s focus on female looks in adjacent breaths. From the transcript:

WALTERS: So, I have to ask you this very personal question. Your hair.
CLINTON: I know that it’s one of the great fascinations of our time, much to my amazement.
WALTERS: People said to me, you’re interviewing the Secretary of State. I said, yes, what should I? Ask her about her hair.
CLINTON: Well, I, you know, I do not travel with any hairdresser. And I’m not very competent myself, I’ve been admitting that for years, which should be obvious to everyone. It just got to be really burdensome to try to find a hairdresser in some cities, somewhere, so I said enough, we’re just gonna try to go with as simple as possible.
WALTERS: Nobody asks the men that.
CLINTON: Have you noticed?
WALTERS: Yeah.

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.