Wisconsin

Olbermann Calls Walker “Whore” – Silence Reigns

Media

By: Brian Sikma

Judging from ongoing media outrage over the use of offensive language towards women by media personalities, the only way to explain why this incident slipped by without controversy is either there is a huge double standard or nobody watches Keith Olbermann. Maybe the truth is a mixture of both.

Back in January, former MSNBC host Keith Olbermann called Wisconsin’s Governor Scott Walker a “whore” on his new television show on Current TV. In introducing a segment devoted to bashing Walker, and right before welcoming Democratic Party of Wisconsin spokesman Graeme Zielinski, Olbermann declared: “Wow, what a whore the governor is. Honestly.”

Despite expressing recent outrage over Rush Limbaugh’s comments, Zielinski refused to disagree with or condemn Olbermann’s remark. Presumably, Zielinski does find those types of comments disagreeable because last week on his Twitter page the WisDems spokesman opined, “How is it that anyone is doubting Rush Limbaugh’s sincerity? He really DID think these women were sluts.”

Apparently Graeme Zielinski cannot perceive when Keith Olbermann crosses a line but he can divine the inner workings of a conservative radio talk show host’s mind. Whether or not Zielinski wants to go down the path of mind-reading may change after people reasonable assume that his reference of Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, an African American and a Democrat, as a “pet” of talk show host Charlie Sykes was slightly racist.

Maybe the media standard for when it is appropriate to call someone a “slut” or a “whore” depends upon whether the person in question is male or female. Is it okay to call Walker a “whore” because he is a guy, but it is not okay to call Sandra Fluke a “slut” because she is a female (pardon the redundancy of gender-specific pronouns). Or maybe the real standard isn’t about gender but ideological affiliation. Walker is a conservative so it is okay to use gender-specific derogatory terms, but Fluke is a liberal so no gender-specific derogatory terms should be used to describe her.

If the later is the most likely standard, then that makes the Left’s argument that it stands up for women against imagined conservative chauvinism ring very, very hollow.