Tina Fey to white women: Turn off HGTV & pay attention to politics

68th Emmy Awards Arrivals 2016

The headlines on this story are sort of unfair overall. Huffington Post went with “Tina Fey Drags White Women Who Regret Voting for Trump.” But Tina Fey wasn’t exactly dragging anyone, I don’t think. Fey took part in a big benefit event for the ACLU in New York on Friday. As part of the benefit, Fey did a discussion with two ACLU people and that’s where she “dragged” white ladies. Except that she was basically telling white women to check out MSNBC instead of HGTV. Like, the subtext of this is “acknowledge your privilege, white ladies who voted for Trump.” But it that “dragging”?

White women love Tina Fey, but Tina Fey isn’t too happy with white women, especially the ones who voted for Donald Trump. During “Stand for Rights: A Benefit for the ACLU” on Friday night, Fey sat down with New York Civil Liberties Union executive director Donna Lieberman and ACLU deputy legal director Louise Melling for a conversation about the battle for women’s rights and the responsibility each of us have to fight for protections that might not directly impact our lives.

After the election, exit polls revealed that a majority of white women ― 53 percent, to be exact ― supported Trump in the election, compared to the 43 percent who voted for Hillary Clinton.

“A lot of this election was turned by white, college-educated women who now would maybe like to forget about this election and go back to watching HGTV,” Fey said. “I would want to urge them to like, ‘You can’t look away’ because it doesn’t affect you this minute, but it’s going to affect you eventually. Again, open two windows. Do watch HGTV. [Don’t] turn our attention away from what is happening.”

After questioning Lieberman and Melling about the current state of reproductive rights, Fey expanded her plea to all white women, including herself, to exercise compassion and empathy in Trump’s America.

“I personally will make my own pledge as a college-educated white woman to not look away,” she said, “to not pretend that things are happening now won’t eventually affect me if we don’t put a stop to it.”

[From HuffPo]

I don’t want to write some huge diatribe against Tina Fey and how she represents Peak White Feminism, mostly because I don’t believe that. I think Tina has said some bad sh-t and I think she has a history of practicing respectability politics on women in general, i.e., if you’re not a sexually repressed, college-educated, heterosexual and married white woman, then you’re not as important as the women who do “play by the rules.” But I also think that she’s trying to be a more productive ally – as evidenced by this ACLU benefit and discussion – and that she has the power to speak to a lot of those white women who did vote for Trump.

Of course, if you were being ungenerous towards Fey and those white women who voted for Trump, you could argue that they were fine with voting for Bigly and/or staying silent on important issues as long as it didn’t affect them personally. Now that the sh-t is hitting the proverbial fan and the political realities are affecting them, then suddenly we’re all in this together and we need to stop watching HGTV and pay attention because somewhere in this country a white lady is being oppressed!

The Museum Gala - Arrivals

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66 Responses to “Tina Fey to white women: Turn off HGTV & pay attention to politics”

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  1. Patricia says:

    In my observation, ALL the batshit crazies (yes even in my own family) who were freaking out about “emails” and going on about how amazing a Trump presidency will be, and making excuses for his blatant racism and fascism, seem to have gotten rather distracted ever since he took office and became an obvious menace and failure.
    No Facebook posts from those assholes. They are all turning a blind eye now to what they have done. And each and every one (that I know personally) is white and Christian and wealthy enough that the shit going on does any affect them… yet.

    She’s spot on but I don’t know why she just kept it to women. I guess she was making a specific point. But it seems they have all gone radio silent.

  2. susanne says:

    I agree with the sentiment. I can’t be sure about the delivery of her message, since I wasn’t there, but the way it’s being reported will only create more division. We need all women coming together, not a popularity contest about which kind of feminist is the real OG feminist.

  3. AreYouForReal? says:

    Tina Fey routinely speaks out against the GOP. I applaud her for calling out this particular group of people who still continue to turn a blind eye to the horror that is Trump and his administration.

    • Esmom says:

      Yes. The GOP is unbelievable. In a podcast the other day they were talking about how literally everyone on the planet — even conservatives in other countries — believe that climate change is a serious concern. Except the Republicans, who insist on this “climate change is a hoax” narrative to further their shitty agenda. It’s so depressing to read ordinary people online now saying things like “science is a scam.” WTF? Sigh.

  4. Nicole says:

    At least SOMEONE is coming for the right people. So over the “poor white people thru are getting screwed” stories. I don’t care and frankly they deserve it. They were totally cool with minorities taking a hit because well it wasn’t them. And now they are realizing those coal jobs won’t be coming back.

    So yes Tina Fey is still not my fave but at least she’s coming for her voting bloc. And no this is not a drag. Please I could drag someone better on a bad day *rolls eyes*

    • lost american says:

      This is not entirely true and a misrepresentation of what happened. 53% percent of white women voted for Donald. The white women Fey is talking about are upper middle class. The fact you went on a diatribe about the working class(which mostly voted for Hillary) says more about you as a person then Tina or Donald.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        Nicole did not go on a diatribe about the “working class”, she went after the poor white working class Trump supporters. White people are not the only ones who make up the “working class”. She wrote nothing about the black working class, Latino, First Nation or the Asian working class etc. The fact that you only equate working class with white people says more about you than any other point you were lazily trying to make.

      • Bettyrose says:

        I don’t have a clue who this 53% is but take me to them. I’m ready to yell at someone. If my demographic fked the planet with their selfish votes, it’s on white women to step up and take responsibility. We’d expect that from any other demographic, wouldn’t we?

      • lost american says:

        When did I equate the working class with white? I said most of them voted for Hillary. Most of the working class (including the white ones) voted for Hillary, so why would they deserve anything? Most of Trump’s support is the upper middle class white people, contrary to public opinion. The suburban republicans people like you and Sen. Schumer said you wanted to voted for you. Well, here you go.

        Bettyrose, I agree with you, but it seems the media is only intent on blaming the working class when most of them voted for Hillary, regardless of race. 53% of white women did vote for Trump. Granted Hillary had a bad campaign, but almost no one talks about this. I do think we will have a woman president soon, but she will be a person of colour.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        Re-read your comment and then re-read mine. I explained to you what I meant in my comment. You need to be more specific when you are talking about the “working class”. An overwhelming majority of the non-white working class voted for HRC. This cannot be said for the white working class and the white middle to upper middle-class whites. You are trying to shift the blame off of one set of whites and place it on the backs of another set of whites. Both groups of whites deserve to be roasted for their decision.

      • Nicole says:

        I actually said nothing about the working class at all. I didn’t mean poor as in SES i meant the tone of these stories is “we should feel bad for white people that voted for Trump” stories. Ie poor white hurt feelings that are now getting screwed because Trump is coming through on all his crap promises and not coming through on the sunshine and rainbows he promised him.

        And again working class is made up of more than white people which is an issue Bernie Sanders also has because he gives zero Fs about the minority working class.
        The only voting bloc that came through is mine in a huge way (black women).

      • lost americans says:

        But all white people didn’t vote for Donald so how am I trying to shift blame? I am simply stating what the exits polls said. Richer people voted trump and poorer people voted Clinton. And that 53% of white women voted for trump. Most them are not working class, Aiobhan. If the 53% percent had been 48 or 49, things might be different. You need to own the fact the Democratic Party spent it’s time fundraising amongst the DC suburban types then campaigning in the swing states. That the orange one got in because we put up a corporatist candidate who spent more time with Cher and Paul McCartney then voters in Pennsylvania.

        Nicole, you know what? I’m black too, but I don’t see what that has to do with Bernie not caring? And what proof is there that Bernie doesn’t care about minorities and the minority working class? All the man has said is we should take better care of Americans. Instead, there had a rigged primary, there was a candidate that had multiple scandals not named Donald Trump over the past 40 years, someone that was for restrictions on abortion in the 3rd term, someone who wouldn’t back medicare for all, or a raise in the minimum wage? This is progressive politics to you Nicole?

      • Nicole says:

        Please read the comments Sanders has said in the last WEEK alone and see why so many minorities have an issue with him now

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        Hey, it looks like three black women (Me, You and Nicole) are chatting with each other. Go figure. No, where in my comment did I state that every white person who voted voted for Dump? I did not even hint at that in my comments. I said that a majority of non-whites from the working class voted for HRC which is 100% true. What is also true is that a razor thin majority of white people from both the working class and the middle to rich classes voted Dump and there were more of those people than POC working class, middle class, and rich voters who decided the election. Any white trump voter no matter what their economic status deserves to be dragged.

        I don’t need to own anything about the democratic party because I am not a democrat. I am pretty sure you thought you have been responding to a white person. I am a black female progressive/independent who normally votes democratic in both federal and local elections because I believe that some progress is better than a Rethuglican world. If the democrats are so bad, why does Bernie continue to caucus with them and even run on a Dem ticket when he is a life long socialist? Why not do the same thing that Stein does every four years?

        So you are still playing the game that the Russians set up for you, huh? The primaries were not rigged. Bernie did not receive enough votes. You want to know why he did not receive enough votes? Because he only spoke to white working class and middle class people. You do also realize that Bernie was also doing the same thing with Susan Sarandon and a lot of other Hollywood elite like Hilary, right? Cause he legit was doing that. He was also writing a book the same time he was supposed to be running for president. Maybe he should have spent more time reaching out to POC communities to get more votes during the primaries instead of cashing in on a book deal.

        BTW, not one of the nominees were that great. Bernie Sanders and Jill Stein were not going to do anything more for non-white communities to help us than Hilary Clinton was going to do. Bernie still refuses to acknowledge anyone other than lower-middle-class white people as the people that he publicly wants to champion instead of reaching out to everyone in the working class.

      • Kitten says:

        “Bernie still refuses to acknowledge anyone other than lower-middle-class white people as the people that he publicly wants to champion instead of reaching out to everyone in the working class.”

        Yeah he’s STILL doing this! He hasn’t learned. And I like Bernie–I voted for him in the primary–but his message isn’t working. So tired of the white working class bullshit narrative….SO. F*CKING. TIRED. of MSM and politicians coddling these people.

    • adastraperaspera says:

      Thank you, Nicole! Please ignore the Russian bots, who are back to harp on classism, as if the concept is new to Celebitchy commenters. Sure, whatever.

  5. mellie says:

    This hits home because I hate watching the news right now and I do watch the $hit out of HGTV (of course I did that prior to the election…I love HGTV, the Food Network and PBS)…but I’ll try and wean myself because Tina Fey is so right!

  6. EOA says:

    A majority of white, college-educated women did, in fact, vote for Clinton. Overall, white women – including non-college educated – voted for Trump. But college education did make a difference when it comes to how white women voted. Just thought I would provide that clarification.

  7. Aiobhan Targaryen says:

    The headline for the Huff Post article is dumb as hell. Tiny Fey is not dragging anyone here. She isn’t even going after all white women. She is specifically going after Trump voters and isn’t even being mean about what she is saying. She isn’t talking about the white liberal white women like Susan “bring on the revolution while I sip champagne in my ivory tower” Sarandon or Amy Shumer etc for their casually racist & delusional nonsense. She would never call out white women like that because She is that type of white woman. She would basically be talking to herself and her bff Amy Poehler. She is going after low hanging fruit and not realizing that she is not that far above a Trump supporter.

    I honestly wish some words had never hit the mainstream and “dragging” is one of them. What is so hard to understand about this word. Dragging in this context means to be insulted and humiliated in the public sphere or on the internet. Constructive criticism is not dragging someone. Mildly chastising someone is not dragging someone. Pleading with someone is not dragging someone. Slay, woke, killed it, and a few other words/phrases that are slipping my memory also belong on this list. I am so glad “on fleek” never caught on. I actually think I would have gone out on the street and shot someone in the foot for saying it.

  8. Shambles says:

    I was thrilled when I read this interview on CNN (though whoever transcribed it did a weird job). Queen Tina perfectly articulated the frustration I’ve been feeling rise up lately, but have been having a hard time putting into words. So many of the basic as hell white girls (I’m white too) I went to high school with were posting pictures of themselves after voting, with their trendy Trump t-shirts and their catchy #TrumpTrain hashtags. They voted for Trump because it’s what their years of indoctrination into ignorant, southern, wealthy, white conservatism taught them to do. And I’ll bet every dollar I have that none of them have paid attention to a single thing that’s happened since November. It’s them I want to throw things at. YOU did this. YOU have to wake up and see what the f*ck you did to our country. You have to take responsibility. Put down your monogram Starbucks tumbler and take off your monogram cowboy boots and look at yourself.

    • Adele Dazeem says:

      Oh god. What a perfect post. Shambles are you my life twin? Do you live in Virginia??
      :)

    • SilverUnicorn says:

      @Shambles

      *applause*

    • Erinn says:

      And I think a lot of it was laziness, as well. Honestly, there was so much Hilary BS being shoved at people from every corner – that instead of looking at things critically a lot of these women did what was ‘easy’ for them and just voted republican regardless of the shitshow that had won the nomination. It was easier for them to ‘laugh off’ the kind of vitriol and lies that Trump was spewing because he wasn’t a politician to begin with, and they probably assumed (for some unknown reason) that once he got in, he’d get his shit together more.

      And he didn’t. And now they’re just going to continue to ignore it all because THEY aren’t the others. They’ve got good jobs and families – they consider themselves to be safe. When you’re running in circles of people in the same position, I think it’s easy to think that that is the norm, and that everyone who is different must have done something to get in the situation that they are.

      And it’s infuriating, and it’s wrong, but because they’re so insulated in their lives they really don’t get it. And they don’t HAVE to get it, unfortunately.

  9. Adele Dazeem says:

    Maybe it’s Monday morning and I haven’t processsed my caffeine yet but what is the controversy? What she said is spot on and relevant. We’ve been giving the flyover state high school dropouts way too much ‘credit’ in this election. Yuppies voted for him too.

  10. Amelie says:

    My only friend that I know of who voted for Trump who lives in the South and originally from there and married to a guy from Mississippi is a white college educated woman. Before the election, we had a conversation that she was voting for Trump to “support her husband.” I was appalled. She even admitted she knew he wasn’t fit to run the country and she didn’t think he would win. When I asked her if she thought her vote didn’t count, she said she knew it did but she had no reasoning to vote for Trump apart from doing it to support her ultra conservative husband. It was such a pull my hair out dialogue.

    Recently I spoke to her again and she empathized with my despair over the outcome of the election, saying she felt the same way when Obama won a second time in 2012. I didn’t say it but in no way can you equate Obama winning a second term to Trump winning. You can be disappointed but I doubt she cried over it, wanting to smash everything in her path. Some people will just choose to stay in denial over what they did. Voting for a candidate just to “support your husband” who you don’t believe is capable of running the country is ludicrous and really says a lot about the ability to think for yourself.

  11. Julie says:

    My friend voted for Trump because she thought he would keep Christ in Christmas, or something.

  12. Cee says:

    If you turn away from reality, from Trump’s BS and amateur government, then you are being COMPLICIT and just as bad as everyone involved with Trump’s government.

    Owning to a mistake takes guts. Pretending everything is perfect shows stupidity beyond measure.

  13. Adrien says:

    Yeah, Tina. I tried watching C-Span but it wasn’t entertaining.

    • NeexKC says:

      Not everything has to be entertaining. Politics being dry doesn’t mean you can’t participate in improving your own country’s trajectory. Also, there are easier to consume sources than the clichéd one you cited.

      I don’t care how bored you are. The US is fucking up things on the world stage and you look like morons for it. This comment doesn’t reflect well either.

  14. Giddy says:

    I haven’t seen anyone saying that they made a mistake in voting for Bigly Boy. They just don’t say anything at all. Those who turned their brains off long enough to vote party over country are embarrassed now.

  15. lost americans says:

    Maybe if there was someone who wasn’t under investigation, or had lost a previous primary to Barack Obama, the democrats would have won.

  16. HoustonGrl says:

    Unfortunately, coming from a position of privilege (as she does), she is exactly who the disenfranchised Trump voter is sick of hearing from (I know Trump is in this category, hence the irony). As someone who works regularly with rural poor, who have high incidences of mental illness and drug addiction, who have never had access to a quality education, I can tell you they are NOT going to listen to someone who preaches from a gala pulpit. And to be fair, what has Tina Fey done? Where was her voice before? What is she doing now to fix the problems? Attending a gala? Guess it’s better than nothing, but for those of us actually in the weeds (and I don’t mean the dandelions in Central Park West), this isn’t going to help. I too am sick of hearing from people like her, ScarJo, Lena, even Angelina to a certain extent, as they are reaping the benefits of a system disproportionately skewed to favor the wealthiest among us. While I don’t think every activist has to take a vow of poverty, I also don’t think that every poor white woman desperate to feed her children, who maybe voted for Trump out of desperation, is sitting at home watching HGTV all day long. Maybe she has three jobs? In that case, it’s a mistake for Tina Fey to characterize her so bluntly.

    • Goldie says:

      But her comments weren’t addressed towards the poor. She was speaking about the priveledged educated, white women who voted for Trump, but now want to bury their heads in the sand after seeing how catastrophic his presidency has been.

    • Lyla says:

      But she wasn’t taking about poor disenfranchised white women, she was specifically calling out white college educated women.

    • Paige says:

      “While I don’t think every activist has to take a vow of poverty, I also don’t think that every poor white woman desperate to feed her children, who maybe voted for Trump out of desperation, is sitting at home watching HGTV all day long. Maybe she has three jobs? In that case, it’s a mistake for Tina Fey to characterize her so bluntly”.
      As a poor white woman struggling to take care of her kids the last thing she should have done is vote for Trump. So many poor people believed his lies and thought they were going to have a better life because of his presidency. The joke was on them. Now they have to worry about their health care being taken away and the list will probably get longer during his presidency. I wouldn’t feel so sorry for this woman. She did it to herself by voting for him. Most people with common sense knew Trump would fail and lie to his supporters.

  17. Alexandra says:

    While I applaud anyone bringing attention to the terrible political fiasco that is wasting space in our white house; I wonder which resulting “political realities are affecting them” ?

  18. Carlton says:

    Thank you, Tina Fey! We, in Canada, are also feeling The Trump Effect. Racists, bigots and sexists have crawled out from under their rocks and out of the woodwork to express their hatred because they think it’s okay. If Donald Trump can do it then why can’t I. I have put a stop to it every chance I have gotten. Thank God we don’t have guns here in Canada!