Carol Platt Liebau: Feminism Begins at Home, Katie

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Feminism Begins at Home, Katie

On her blog, Katie Couric laments the absence of any women (besides herself, of course) "at the table" during a high-level White House briefing before the President's "surge" speech.

Writing in the faux-naif tone that's no doubt calibrated to appeal to what she perceives as Middle American dimwits, Couric confides:

George Stephanopoulos, Brian Williams, Tim Russert, Bob Schieffer, Wolf Blitzer, and Brit Hume—I couldn’t help but notice, despite how far we’ve come, that I was still the only woman there. Well, there was some female support staff near the door. But of the people at the table, the “principals” in the meeting, I was the only one wearing a skirt.

Hm. Of course, there are very few women who have seniority or experience equivalent to that of Schieffer, Blitzer, Hume, Russert, and even Williams -- and that includes Katie Couric (whose ascent to the anchor chair could be attributed more to perkiness and high q ratings than to hard core journalistic experience). It would be instructive if Couric could point out some of the women who had put in the hours, days and years of reporting of, say, Schieffer and Hume, and who were still unjustifiably excluded. After all, Judy Woodruff has retired, and Christiane Amanpour isn't into domestic reporting.

Of course, as more women advance through the ranks, more women will be eligible to be invited to these very senior meetings. That is, of course, if the senior women in positions of power -- like Katie Couric -- are willing to advance them.

How remarkably revealing it was, then, to read that since Katie took over at CBS News, female reporters at the network have received 40% fewer assignments than they did under her predecessor, Bob Schieffer.

Feminism begins at home, Katie.


Blogger Marshall Art said...

Perhaps Katie just wanted the others to start wearing skirts.

9:11 PM  

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