The Corndog Bitten ‘Round The World: A Photo Of Michele Bachmann Mid-Chomp

Over the week weekend, the UK’s Telegraph‘s blog published a post about Rep. Michele Bachmann and illustrated it with a picture of her chomping down on a corndog at the Iowa State Fair. Bachmann’s eyes are mid-blink, her lipsticked mouth is wide open, and well, she’s shoving a corndog into her face.

Do we really have to talk about this? We do? Okay.The Telegraph‘s corndog photo comes right on the heels of Newsweek‘s controversial cover of Bachmann with a batty look on her face. Now, I happen to believe Bachmann is batty and the magazine illustrated how she is perceived by many member of the public. The Newsweek cover was humiliating — even cruel — because it’s a terrible photo. But it’s not necessarily sexist.

The corndog photo is a whole different ball of yarn: She looks, simply put, like she’s putting a penis in her mouth.

In fairness to the Telegraph, Bachmann should know better than to be photographed putting something so phallic in her mouth. Candidates are always snapped eating local delicacies on the campaign trail and anyone with half a brain knows what corndogs look like. She couldn’t have snacked on some fried Oreos instead?

But my sympathy for the Telegraph stops there. There was a calculated reason that that particular photo was published: to humiliate Bachmann in a sexual way. Stooping to this level for cheap laughs is deplorable. Even if she’s a wretchedly batty candidate, she doesn’t deserve to be sexually humiliated by the international media to discredit her. No candidate, male or female, deserves that treatment but it’s particularly sad when it happens to one of the few women on the campaign trail. I don’t think blogger Frances Martel at Mediaite was being heavy-handed at all when she wrote:

“… [W]ould the Telegraph have run a similar photo of a presidential candidate consuming an obvious phallic symbol if said candidate were male? Phallic symbols make for good comedy, sure, but the Telegraph is not Mad Magazine, and there appears to be no intent at humor here, only degradation. The image sends a clear message to any woman thinking about pursuing such high public office: we at the Telegraph are unable to look at you as anything but a sex object, no matter what your qualifications for office.”

Let’s hope this corndog photo of Bachmann will be the wurst we’ll have to see. (Yuk yuk yuk yuk.)

[Telegraph UK]
[Mediaite]

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