Ivanka Trump’s role in the White House and in the public eye has stirred the “feminism” discussion.
Jillian Melchior, Political Editor at Heat Street and a Fellow at the Steamboat Institute and Independent Women’s Forum, and Jill Filipovic, Author of The H-Spot: The Feminist Pursuit of Happiness, joined Bold TV to discuss Ivanka’s role with our hosts Carrie Sheffield and Clay Aiken. Watch here or on our Facebook page.
Clay is the only member of the panel who has met and worked with Ivanka Trump. They met on “Celebrity Apprentice,” where he did some window dressing for her. Clay said he likes Ivanka and pointed out that as a presidential child, she has taken on a large, powerful role in the White House.
Clay posed the question: Is she a feminist icon at all?
To which Jill answered, “No, she’s not a feminist icon. She would like to believe she is.”
Jill has read her book and said while Ivanka seems like a very nice person, the book had a lot of “meaningless corporate speak.” With her dad in the White House, she is believed to be a moderating force. Jill claimed she is receiving credit for something she’s not doing, because there is no evidence that she’s moderated any of Trump’s policies.
“He’s still very much to the right on issues that Ivanka is supposedly an advocate for,” Jill said.
Jill said advocating for women is new to Ivanka, and she is building her brand on it. Her book celebrates climbing the corporate ladder and pushing for your own advancement, without looking at the structural and political forces of feminism.
When it comes to Ivanka’s liberal stance on paid leave, Jillian said she doesn’t think it is advancing women’s opportunities. She said the left is losing feminists by focusing on specific issues alone.
“I do think that all issues are women’s issues, and I dislike when feminism is focused on very few issues such as paid leave and sexual assault,” Jillian said.
While these are very important issues, Jillian said that through the election they learned women are also very interested in broader issues that are also relevant to women such as the economy, health care, etc.
Jillian views feminism as having the same opportunities as a man and the same freedom to make a choice about them. She states that Ivanka’s paid leave policy is one size fits all and doesn’t allow flexibility, which creates less opportunities for women in the work space.
We will continue to monitor Ivanka’s actions in the White House. For now, we are happy to have these two women on Bold TV to add their opposing perspectives to the conversation.
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