Eating your cake and having it

Nope. No can do. Will not fly.

Brooklyn-based Hasidic newspaper Der Zeitung has apologized for publishing an iconic photograph of President Obama and his national security team with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and National Security team member Audrey Tomason photoshopped out…

Der Zeitung addressed what it cast as “allegations” that the women had been removed from the photograph because “religious Jews denigrate women or do not respect women in public office,” calling such suggestions “malicious slander and libel.”

The newspaper offered kind words for Clinton and said it respects all government officials, but that religious considerations prevent it from showing images of women.

That’s the thing you can’t do – the thing that won’t fly. You can’t treat women as so special and different that pictures of them in news media have to be faked out of existence, and claim that you don’t denigrate women and you do respect them and that to say otherwise is malicious slander and libel.

You think you can, because you deployed the magic phrase “religious considerations,” but you’re wrong. You can’t. Fraudulently altering an official government photograph that shows the Secretary of State present at an event of great importance to the State Department, in such a way that she is not there at all, is not consistent with respecting women and not denigrating them.

“In accord with our religious beliefs, we do not publish photos of women, which in no way relegates them to a lower status,” Der Zeitung said. “Publishing a newspaper is a big responsibility, and our policies are guided by a Rabbinical Board. Because of laws of modesty, we are not allowed to publish pictures of women, and we regret if this gives an impression of disparaging to women, which is certainly never our intention. We apologize if this was seen as offensive.”

Not accepted. Worthless. Fundamentally insulting. Fuck your rabbinical board. You don’t get to delete women from history, and pretending to apologize after doing it doesn’t salvage anything.

33 Responses to “Eating your cake and having it”