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Does Ann Coulter Get Away With It Because She's A Woman?

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As everyone has heard by now, Ann Coulter was a guest on Chris Matthews’ Hardball on Tuesday the 26th, and as you’d expect, she was obnoxious. However, there was a surprise that put Coulter on the defensive even more than she normally is. As she was randomly spewing forth with her usual venom, Matthews informed her that Elizabeth Edwards had called the show and said that she would like to talk to her.

Twitching in her seat, Coulter nevertheless put on her “bring it” front. Edwards told Coulter that she’d welcome her input on the issues, but that she needed to stop the personal attacks on her husband, and she also needed to quit talking about her deceased son. In the recent past, Coulter called John Edwards a "f*g" and remarked that he was so shallow and so willing to advance his presidential candidacy that he had placed a bumper sticker on the back of his car that read, “[a]sk me about my dead son”.

Coulter came back with the feeble argument that the attacks were ultimately justified as the Edwards campaign was now using Coulter’s prior statements about Edwards as a fundraising prompt. What better to compel the generosity of the left than Ann Coulter? A Coulter sycophant lurking in Hardball’s “special outdoor audience” that was gathered to get a glimpse of their queen asked, “[w]hy isn’t John Edwards making this call?” Elizabeth Edwards responded that it was she who was the mother of the boy who died, and that defending her husband and her child’s memory was basically on her. This is a concept that Coulter probably does not grasp at all.

That the wife of a public figure, a candidate for president, could act spontaneously and independent of her husband or his handlers is possible, as Coulter has no point of reference. Every move she makes is for effect, and she is lucratively rewarded for her undeniable abilities as a provocateur who considers no one and no ramifications. No longer confined to outlets like Fox, her mean spirtedness is on display as a one-woman itinerant freak show that the mainstream media built.

It was on Harball last year that she called Al Gore a “total f*ggot” in the context of a conversation about a previous statement she made in which she remarked that “Bill Clinton is gay”, and if there is any doubt at all folks, to Ann Coulter it appears that being gay is the absolute worst insult she can inflict. She seems to be fixated on the sexuality of others in a way that seems pathological, and her undoubtedly homophobic admirers eat it up. Others too seem to be unable to turn away from this bad girl, no holds barred act hoping that if she makes news she’ll do it on their shows.

Throughout Coulter’s appearance on Hardball, Matthews transparently feigned a combination of fear and regret at having her as his guest for a second time, as she might “get him into trouble”, even though everyone knows she would not have been there if he hadn’t wanted her to be.

Coulter’s TV appearances can’t help but to compel arm chair psychologists, me included where Coulter is concerned, to consider just what component of human development is missing in this woman’s make-up. I admit that I have a small portion of my web site devoted to pointing out the outrageousness of Ann Coulter via a daily “Media Matters” feed, as her statements are so appalling to me that I have a strong desire to share them as a kind of “strange news” point of interest. But why is Coulter given a forum in mainstream broadcast venues?

Is it because she is a woman, kind of, that mainstream TV shows repeatedly have her on as a guest even though she perpetually, and at the very least, engages in slander and homophobic hate speech? This sexism and patriarchy demonstrated by the mainstream media intimates that if Coulter denegrates public figures or entire political parties, or just merely individuals, it will ultimatelly be OK because after all she’s just a woman and how seriously could anyone take her “political analysis” anyway? And just consider those ratings!

Coulter’s appearances on MSNBC seem particularly ironic as immediately after the Imus firing, the network made a short-lived attempt at a “public conversation” that was on the surface about race, but underlying that topic the dialogue was billed as one that was meant to examine what was in general, acceptable content for public consumption. Examining the confusion of defamation and free speech via government regulated airwaves should be an equal opportunity pursuit.

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CD Rodgers lives in West Virginia where she works for a national poverty-focused charity. She also publishes a web site,

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