Jewish World Review Nov. 11, 1999 /2 Kislev, 5760
From the Macarena to 'Victor/Victoria'
THE UNOFFICIAL CAMPAIGN theme song and dance of the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign was the
Macarena. This time around, with Gore running for president, it appears the unofficial theme
will be "Victor/Victoria,'' with Al Gore in the lead role of a man playing a woman playing a
This off-Broadway production is being produced by Naomi Wolf, the feminist writer who has
been advising Gore's presidential campaign. Her salary reduced from $15,000 to $5,000 per
month, Wolf says she'd work for Gore for free if she didn't have to be the breadwinner for her
family, leaving one to question what kind of man she's turned her husband into.
Appearing on last Sunday's "This Week'' program on ABC, Wolf tried to explain why she is
ga-ga over Gore. Her meandering and content-less answer to a question from Cokie Roberts
set the stage for what followed: "Because I think the American people are much more focused
on if they knew the substance of the reason I'm at the table of the Gore campaign, they'd be
pleased and interested and glad to know, because they're the substance of what American
families are concerned about.''
Come again? Can anyone diagram that sentence, much less explain its meaning?
But beyond the alpha and the beta -- her descriptions of male types that she said had been
"taken out of context'' -- Wolf outlined her vision for women, which has the government as the
ultimate mother figure providing every woman's need: "(Women) think about how difficult it is
to be good parents and good workers. No matter how hard they try, they are overstretched.
They are tired, they are not having the supports they need to build a strong family life that they
want.'' Wolf wonders, "Who's taking care of kids after school between 3 and 6 p.m.?'' She
intimates, along with Al(pha) Gore, that the answer to that question is the government.
For Wolf, only a government headed by Al Gore can do for women what they apparently are
incapable of doing themselves. Wolf's children and our children are at risk if Gore isn't elected,
she tells us. Apparently, parents should have little say in the future of their own kids, and
teaching them to get naked with one another in school and to masturbate, as she prescribes in
her book, "Promiscuities,'' are two of her recommended strategies to keep them so preoccupied
that they won't give their parents or the country any trouble.
Wolf's memory of recent history makes it seem she has just emerged from a re-education
camp. To her, Gore was involved in ending the Cold War because "he cared about it. He
actually believed something could be done and he sat down -- and you know, he's a father with
a family, he cared about it for his kids' sake, and for all our kids' sake. And he learned what
needed to be learned about how to create a solution to what seemed like an intractable problem
.... He joined others in believing that there was hope in a situation that seemed hopeless.'' This
is historically ignorant psychobabble. Gore was a nuclear freezer who opposed the
peace-through-strength policies of the Reagan administration that led to the fall of the Berlin
Wall 10 years ago.
A more mature feminist, Camille Paglia, who thinks like a woman, not a girl, put Wolf's silly and
often-incomprehensible remarks in the proper perspective. On CBS' "Face the Nation,'' Paglia
said Wolf is a "lightweight'' with a "Seventeen-magazine level of thinking.''
Wolf claims that no candidate agrees with everything each advisor stands for, but clearly Gore
thinks she can help persuade young women for whom feelings are everything to vote for him.
The scary thing is, what if she's
Cal Thomas Archives
©1999, LA TimesSyndicate