Sunday, October 26, 2008

Sarah Palin: The 150K Woman and the Garment Industry

Once again promoting my latest at Global Comment.

It seems as though controversy and Governor Palin are going to be wedded to each other until Election Day. In this week’s startling revelation the public learned that 150 thousand in RNC donations was spent to purchase a new wardrobe, hair styling, and make-up for the Governor.

Who says that McCain didn’t pick her for her potential to be election eye candy?

Much of the conversation regarding this revelation has revolved around the double standard when it comes to appearance between men and women in the public eye. Campbell Brown commented on CNN, “Compare that with the attention given to Senator Barack Obama’s $1,500 suits or Senator John McCain’s $520 Ferragamo shoes. There is no comparison,” she said.

It is clear that for Brown the issue is not about the money that was spent but about the fact that this is only a story because of the inequality that exists between men and women. She went on to further state, “I speak from experience here. When I wear a bad outfit on the air, I get viewer e-mail complaining about it. A lot of e-mail. Seriously. When Wolf Blitzer wears a not-so-great tie, how much e-mail do you think he gets? My point is for women, unfortunately, appearance is part of the job.”

While I would agree that this is indeed a women’s issue, I feel that it is also important to note the women who are not being discussed in this recent controversy. It is well known that the fashion industry is highly dependent on sweat shop labour to produce cheap garments for the Western world.

The majority of these labourers are women of colour and they are invisible, not only in this particular situation, but often times when it comes to discussion about the ways in which the fashion industry can have negative impact on society.

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3 comments:

Queers United said...

I think it is ridiculous that the RNC spent this kind of money, voter money to help Palin look her best. How can she wear such expensive clothes and be able to relate to the average joe and joelle? This is another sign of hot out of touch the GOP is.

Ebony Intuition said...

I'm not even American and I just want this election to be over and done with, its getting really annoying now.Sigh

Anonymous said...

Absolutely true!

What I can't understand is how designers can get millions of dollars without making it clear whether or not they use sweatshop labor to make their clothing? I'm talking about high end, 1,000 plus accessories, boutiques. Its never very clear to me if they use Sweatshop labor or not, even if a scarf is 1,500 USD. I think most ppl just make the assumption of course they are using well paid adult and not kids.

I'm 21, about to enter the work force and am seriously considering learning how to put on foundation ( believe it or not, i do not wear makeup-cant stand the hassle, haven't been into it since HS). Before I was wondering how to afford cosmetic surgery until I went online and learned more about contouring. Now Im looking for foundations.

I know men never have to deal with this because when I go online to look for ways women can make their faces appear more masculine the video's I find are very low quality. There are virtually no "How Too's". (I'm genderqueer btw, so I would be interested in this). There is enough on how to make your face look like a swamp, candycane, rainbow or punched in the eye.
SIGH.....