Over on the Daily Beast, columnist Kirsten Powers makes an excellent point that all the furor over Rush Limbaugh, while totally justified, has also been one-sided. When are we going to hear similar outrage over the casual sexism of the left-leaning commentariat?
Dealing with criticism is part of the job for people who do what I do for a living. I’ve felt it from both sides. But as I read Kirsten’s column, I thought back and realized that some of the more blatantly sexist attacks I have personally felt have come from the left.
Rushbo thinks I am dumber than a bag of rocks. The day after I moderated a Republican debate last fall, he spent much of his program talking about me. Here’s a sample:
“...the look on Karen Tumulty’s face was one of total vacancy, deer in the headlights.”
There was a lot more like that, as you will see if you go back and read the transcript. It was pretty vicious, but not sexist in my view.
And it was nothing compared with what liberal enfant terrible Matt Taibbi wrote about me a few years back. He too had a lot of complaints about my coverage, but his biggest beef seemed to be that he doesn’t consider me attractive.
At various points, he has described me as “mannish,” “a pre-op version of Dave Barry,” and a “female impersonator.” At one point I sent him an e-mail joking that I’d like to see what he looks like when he’s 48 and has two babies, but that only opened up another spigot of vitriol. Most of the original links are gone, but you can get a sense of it in this excerpt from his book. He also wrote at length about the size of one female reporter's rear end, and called another one “a squirrely b--ch.”
Really clever stuff, huh?
Limbaugh certainly deserved the criticism. The question now, however, is whether anyone else will get the message.