Women's Issues

Today Show Brings On A Gaggle Of Sexist Commentary To Make Matt Lauer Look Like Less Of A Jerk

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today-showLast week, Matt Lauer incurred the wrath of the internet for asking GM executive Mary Barra in an interview for the Today Show if she could be both a CEO and a good mom. Everyone knows this is a question he would never ask a male CEO. For some reason, a man’s ability to be both a father and a professional is never called into question. Matt Lauer certainly isn’t the first person to perpetuate this ridiculous double standard by asking such a question. Instead of owning up to his role in perpetuating this stereotype, he got really defensive on this morning’s show, insisting “having it all” isn’t a gender issue.

The hosts were discussing PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi’s controversial comments that women, in fact, couldn’t have it all. Boy oh boy was Matt Lauer visibly thrilled to hear a woman being just as sexist as him.

I’ve always felt this is not a gender issue, this is a human issue of work and life balance. It’s a parenting issue for men and women, moms and fathers, it’s a question I ask myself every single day. But clearly, it still touches a nerve.

Yeah, Matt. It touches a nerve because while it may be a question you ask yourself, it’s not a question you ask male CEO’s. It absolutely is a question you ask female ones though. How long are you going to pretend that there exists no bias here? The general public and women in particular wouldn’t think you were such a sexist douche if you just admitted, Hey. You’re right. I did do that. I did make a female CEO defend her parenting ability and I have never done that to a man. My bad. I’m going to learn from this and become a better, less sexist human.

Then, to make the segment even more of a shit-show, Martha Stewart shows up to back up Indra’s insistence that women can’t have it all – without a “team,” that is.

I think Indra’s very, very right about ‘you can’t have it all.’ You can try, and I think you really need to have that back-up team at home if you’re on a CEO path or you are a CEO you have to have that back up team that really knows how you want your children taken care of – you can’t say that about the husband (chuckles) they can’t really take care of your husband – you should be taking care of your husband (laughs).

Then Kathy Lee Gifford of all people shows up insisting women can have it all. Imagine my surprise when this message was coming from her mouth. I was thinking – go Kathie! Until she said this:

I don’t think you can have it all at the same time, but you can definitely learn to balance things… You have to decide what kind of joy you want in your life; do you want trophies on your walls or do you want your children to grow?

Huh? Maybe the Today Show wanted Matt to seem less gross by having this parade of nonsense on. Poor Tamron Hall. She just sat there like, What the hell is happening right now?

Here it is. Enjoy.

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