Alberta: Powerful women in politics and the gender card

Alberta Premier Alison Redford

Alberta Premier Alison Redford

Since President Obama occupied the oval office the racism card has been used against anyone criticizing the president’s policies. While at times this may be justified, more often then not it is a red herring. A Calgary Herald journalist, Karin Klassen, accuses critics of Alberta Premier Alison Redford of invoking the sexism card. Is this a sign of things to come in view of Hillary Clinton’s possible candidacy in 2016?

Alison Redford has been criticized by the official opposition for her high society travel, the most infamous being an attendance at Nelson Mandela’s funeral, where the tax payer was soaked for $45,000. Redford also took a delegation to London, England for London 2012.

The most recent revelations have been that Redford’s daughter accompanied her on trips along with one of her daughter’s friends. Redford excused that with the fact that she is the first women premier that is also a mother. The premier has also been criticized for a $9,200 trip back from California to attend the memorial service of the late Premier Ralph Klein.

Karin Klassen’s post in the Calgary Herald “Attacks on Redford all gender,” states in part that this is all about sexism and that if this were a male nothing would have been criticized.

This is precisely why women don’t go into politics. The attacks on Premier Alison Redford, over her supposedly egregious misuse of the government plane, couldn’t be more about her gender if we’d hidden a cocktail napkin in her seat-back and told her women don’t belong in the province’s cockpit.

I come to this conclusion through the pit of my stomach. It starts as a germ of a nag, and over time, turns into an insidious sickening feeling, the same one that happens when I hear people defend the use of the term “alderman” or sing about the “sons” we stand on guard for.

Something about it is just not right, and I can’t bring myself to go with the flow.

Source: Calgary Herald

Among Redford’s biggest critics are Danielle Smith, Leader of the Wild Rose Party and Leader of the Official Opposition in the Alberta Legislature, The Canadian Taxpayer Association, and Brian Mason of the New Democratic Party.

Politics is a bloodsport and criticism can often be harsh, but none of the criticism on MsRedford is out of line. Yes Redford is a mom, but so are lot of working women in Alberta, who cannot get daycare for their daughters on the government’s tab. Her multitude of trips to Washington, D.C., Chicago and New York, apparently to promote the XL Keystone pipeline are questionable to say the least. The battle lines on the pipeline have been drawn in the U.S. and Redford has been attempting to convince the converted.

In this case, the criticism highlighting Redford’s extravagant spending is justified. For Karin Klassen to compare this to a napkin left on a Westjet flight, objecting to a female pilot in the cockpit, is like comparing apples to oranges. No Ms Klassen this about hard working Albertans that are concerned over a debt accumulated in the most prosperous province in the country.

While the Wildrose Party may be the most vocal on this issue, the criticism thankfully is coming both from the left and right of the political spectrum.

The gender card is sure to be raised in the 2016 presidential campaign should Hillary Clinton decide to run. The so called “Old Boys Club” should get ready.

Alison Redford billed taxpayers for $9,200 Palm Springs flight

Attacks on Redford all about gender

About the Author

Karl Gotthardt - Politisite Managing Editor Maj. Gotthardt is a Retired Military Officer with 35 years service in the Canadian Armed Forces. He spent most of his time in the Military in Infantry Battalions. Karl took part in training for Afghanistan as an Operator Analyst with the Canadian Maneouvre Training Centre. Karl is a qualified military parachutist and military free fall parachutist. He earned his U.S. Master Jump Wings in Fort Benning, Georgia. Karl enjoys working with horses for the last 24 year. He owns six. He has experience in breeding, training and of course riding.Karl was born in Germany and is fluent in both English and German and he speaks enough French to "get in trouble". Karl has written or writes at NowPublic, All Voices, Tek Journalism and many others.

Author Archive Page

1 Comment

  1. All kinds of cards are used; racist, gender, class etc. I wish politicians would stick to sensible policies. Good article Karl.

Post a Comment