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Raven's Rant - Paula Jones and NOW

I simply cannot believe that the NOW (National Organization for Women) isn't backing Paula Jones on her appeal. After all of the hee-hawing of the past two years they're whimping out. Patricia Ireland, in her 04/22/98 statement said "Paula Jones has surrounded herself with a phalanx of politically-motivated lawyers and spokespeople who are opponents of the women's rights movement. Whether she is part of them or just a pawn, we may never know. But we have been on the receiving end of their lies and misrepresentations, and we have no interest in working with them or advancing their cause."

So it matters not that (then) Governor Bill Clinton fondled Paula's thigh, exposed his genitals to her, asked her for oral sex and said that he was extremely good friends with her boss, insinuating that if she did not do as he asked she'd lose her job??

Tell the truth, Ms. Ireland...the real reason you're not backing Paula isn't because of the people involved in her case. It's because Clinton is going to be in power for 2 more years and YOU don't want to lose any of your influence. Politically-motivated? That's the pot calling the kettle black.

At it's base roots, the Jones vs. Clinton case is a sexual harrassment case, NOT a political machine to ruin Clinton's reputation. He does that all on his own. If you TRULY supported women, like you say you do, it would matter not who else was working with Paula, all it would matter is that the woman needs help.

The IRS has started investigating Paula; is this a coincedence? Hardly. Quite frankly, I am surprised she hasn't fallen to the same fate of Vince Foster and Ron Brown. Most likely, had the case gone to court, she would have.

But the case HASN'T gone to court. Paula never had her chance to present her case. The NOW organization is supposed to be for legislation on women's rights. What about Paula's right to have her case heard? What about the laws against sexual harrassment? Is NOW saying that it's alright for a powerful man to fondle someone and expose himself to her...as long as he's not her boss? It matters not that a state governor can influence people as to whom they hire and fire (or loan money to, but that's another story); because in this case the governor wasn't directly Paula's boss?

Well, excuse me, but I thought sexual harrassment was sexual harrassment, be it in the workplace or not; and I thought NOW was an organization founded to help women fight this kind of thing.

You can't pick and choose your fights, Ms. Ireland, when you say yourself that you stand up for ALL women.

In my opinion, you are no better than Hillary Clinton. Instead of having some respect for herself and leaving a man who had admittedly cheated on her and who has an overwhelming number of women coming forth and accusing him of lude sexual comments and acts, she stays in her position for the power. She is afraid if she left Bill she would have no power whatsoever. What she doesn't realize is that she would still go down in history...a First Lady forced to leave the office because her husband no longer stuck to his vows, think of the sympathy she'd gain! She could tour the world promoting self-respect in women, making speeches on how a woman should love herself and respect herself enough to leave an unfaithful husband. Just think of the book deals then!

In your case, Ms. Ireland, you also see wrongdoing and choose to ignore it simply so that you can keep YOUR power. You could come out with your NOW supporters and fully back Paula Jones and send the world a powerful message...that this kind of behavior will NOT be accepted and will be fought in ALL cases...or you could sit back, stick your finger in the wind, and decide what you're going to do based on the current political situation.

The wishy-washy policies and sudden 180's of your group and your stance on issues makes me sick. Your hounding of the political playing field is incorrigible especially since it's supposed to be your group's mission to be changing legislation for women...not backing down from a case because you fear your lobbyists and donations won't have as much impact.
If I am ever in a situation where I need help and the NOW members come running to "help" (aka: get the group's name in the media) I will more than gladly throw them out of the door. If I'm not physically strong enough to do it myself, I'll *gasp* get a man to help me. That in itself should be enough to send those ladies running full-tilt in the other direction.

If you say you support all women, then DO IT!! Support Paula Jones!!

Oh...and one other thing. I love the message your website's front-door image projects. Is it "Support Women"? No. Is it "Women Have A Right to Have Rights"? No.
Matter of fact, it's not about women at all. It's a huge banner saying "Fighting the Radical Right!!".

Yes, Ms. Ireland, it's obvious where your agenda lies. Not with women as it should be, but with your position in politics.
Truly, truly sad.

Copyright© 1998

Raven's Perch
Printed here with full permission.