The Service Women’s Action Network calls Dan Choi out for his misogyny
By Courtney | Published: November 4, 2010
I am such a giant fan of the Service Women’s Action Network (SWAN), even writing about one of their founder’s in my book. Maricela Guzman is such a massive inspiration:
Well, SWAN has just issued an open letter to Dan Choi–the darling of the anti-DADT movement and the mainstream media. In a recent interview in the Village Voice, Choi reffered to Harry Reid as a “pussy…[who] bleeds once a month.” Check out SWAN’s response:
The Service Women”s Action Network (SWAN) and the undersigned advocacy organizations were shocked and extremely disappointed by your comments about women in your recent interview in the Village Voice. You should know as we do that there is no room for misogyny, racism or other forms of hate speech among people who are working to end discrimination and bring about equality in the military, and throughout society.
Your comments about women are irresponsible, indefensible and inexcusable, and you should publicly acknowledge that fact. As a human rights advocate, you should know that degrading one group of people to promote the rights of another disserves everyone. Your sexist comments also undermine SWAN”s efforts to achieve our policy objectives, which include promoting equality for all servicemembers.
As an organization that advocates for equal opportunity for all servicemembers and veterans, SWAN is keenly aware that there is still a tremendous amount of misogyny both within the military and the LGBTQ community, and that misogynistic and homophobic language is rampant in the military.
Comments denigrating women”s bodies, or suggesting that simply being a woman is abhorrent, are unacceptable. Unfortunately, this type of language is all too familiar to women in the military.
As a direct result of misogynistic language, a hostile work environment for servicewomen–both heterosexual and lesbian–is allowed to thrive. Hate crimes, sexual harassment, lesbian-baiting, gay-bashing and sexual assault have flourished. Adopting and promulgating hate-filled speech against women only serves to increase the danger that servicewomen and LGBTQ servicemembers face on a daily basis.
We must hold you accountable for what you say as a spokesperson for equality. We encourage you to render a genuine apology, rather than a half-hearted, perfunctory tweet on Twitter. We also encourage you to discuss this issue with us further. It is part of our mission to educate the public about the serious challenges facing military women and women veterans, and we”d be more than happy to assist you in deepening your understanding of these issues.
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