Ascribing Rielle Hunter's shortcomings to being blond

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Saturday, May 8, 2010

I'm curious about Lisa de Moraes's choice of words regarding Oprah Winfrey's televised interview with John Edwards's lover, Rielle Hunter.

De Moraes wrote that Hunter "explained blondely, 'I didn't pay a lot of attention to the Kerry-Edwards campaign -- I had a lot going on in my life at that time' " ["With Rielle Hunter, Oprah explores the depths of sex, lies -- and videotape," Style, April 30].

Granted, the dictionary on my bookshelf is from 1975, but it defines blond(e) as a noun or an adjective -- not as an adverb. What did de Moraes mean to convey by saying that Hunter explained something "blondely"? Is that "blondely" as in how Diane Sawyer anchors ABC's "World News"? Or maybe it is "blondely" like how Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton addressed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference at the United Nations this week.

I think we all know what de Moraes really meant. It's unfortunate in 2010 to see a woman in the mainstream media resort to catty stereotypes in describing other women. I hope that de Moraes -- who has dark hair -- can learn to feel confident in her own attributes without belittling others.

I also hope that The Post returns to using a real dictionary instead of relying on popular slang when editing its content. I'm not paying to read a tabloid.

Lenore Marentette,

Springfield

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Lisa de Moraes made radiant my patriarchal stereotyping heart with pure gold -- or should I say platinum? -- when she insightfully wrote that John Edwards's paramour, Rielle Hunter, was explaining herself "blondely" when relating that she had been too preoccupied with her own life to initially recognize the politician.

Let's face it: Defining moral and intellectual characteristics by hair color is a truly perceptive approach. While skin color has deservedly been discredited as such a basis, at least with this reminder that blond is not just a hair color but also a lighter shade of bimbo, we now have truly achieved the better level of character evaluation defined by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who dreamed that one day all "shall not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their Lady Clairol."

I for one, with the wisdom of my thinning, light-brown, silver-sprinkled hair, applaud de Moraes's insight -- especially where it would apply to natural blondness. For we all know from history that defining human abilities and limitations by the simple genetics of one's external coloring has typically led to the advance of progress and harmony in human affairs.

Matthew Hogan, Alexandria


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