“Usually, an enforced culture of silence shrouds abuse and coercion. Yet somehow we’ve been given to believe—by Mam, Kristof and hand-selected victims who sometimes turn out, later, to have been fed scripted hard-luck tales—that here, silence is nothing but healing.”—When a human rights crusader builds her advocacy on lies (May 2014. This essay received some kind recognition, most notably from The Sidney Hillman Foundation and the Washington Post.)
“Amid breaking reports on how Real Housewives feel about each other really, ridiculous questions about female guests’ hairstyles, and inane flirtations with male guests (Walters famously prefers the show heteronormative) we’ve been offered a spate of products we might enjoy in our hypothetical middle-class homes. As content. Before the commercials. For Walters’ much-lauded guest-fluffing is also the show’s policy toward sponsors. Always the pioneer, her efforts to integrate advertising and editorial culminated early in a 2000 campaign with Campbell’s Soup. In it, pro-soup messages were seamlessly woven into regular banter (since, we’re given to believe, all women break into well-rehearsed, in-key product theme songs whenever food is discussed) — a deal elucidated in a Nov. 14, 2000, Wall Street Journal item. A July 2008 sponsorship from T-Mobile cut other ads out of the show entirely, sadly lengthening the unbearable Hot Topic segment.”—Barbara Walters’ real legacy is “The View”—and that’s bad for women (May 2014).