Friday, May 18, 2012

#WarOnWomen: Comedienne Kathy Griffin Misidentifies Obama as 'Harvard Law Professor' in Rant Attacking Elisabeth Hasselbeck as 'Stupid B*tch' and 'C*nt'

Talk about putting your progressive foot in your mouth.

And you'd think someone would have pointed out to Griffin that President Obama wasn't in fact a "Harvard law professor." (He was the president of the Harvard Law Review, but he did not teach at Harvard.) Indeed, Elisabeth Hasselbeck would have probably pointed it out to Griffin if she'd had the nerve to all call her a "b*tch' and "c*nt" to her face. (And Hasselbeck could have said, in a condescending tone, "Actually, Kathy, that's not true.") Obama taught law at the University of Chicago for 12 years, from 1992 to 2004. And to be precise, Obama wasn't even a "professor." He was an adjunct "lecturer" and later a "senior lecturer," both of which signify temporary or untenured status --- and are much less prestigious titles than, say, a tenured associate or full professor of law. The fine points of academic appointments obviously escape Ms. Griffin, but I'm not going to call her a "stupid b*tch."

See Newsbusters, "Kathy Griffin Aims Vulgar Name-Calling at ABC's Hasselbeck."

The Huffington Post also indicates that the bleeped out word at the end of the clip was "c*nt". See: "Kathy Griffin to Elisabeth Hasselbeck: 'Take It Down a Notch B***H' (VIDEO)."

UPDATE: This post is linked at Instapundit. Thanks!

And Ann Althouse blogged it from there, "'With her attitude to the President, who was, like, a Harvard law professor, I'm like, take it down a notch, bitch'." Althouse actually shows Griffin some respect: "First, Kathy Griffin has a comic style. You either like it or you don't." I don't, obviously. But I think Althouse makes a good point here:
Third — and here's where it gets really interesting to me — he was a Harvard law professor. Put aside the mistakes. This notion that you've got to pay special respect to law professors... as a law professor, I'm fascinated. Now, maybe it's just Harvard law professors that command this odd obeisance. Who knows how far down the U.S. News "Best Law Schools" list you go before Kathy's Etiquette of Respecting the Law Professor peters out? Maybe there's a gentle gradation of decreasing respect as you slide down through the top five, into the basement of the top 15 and beyond. I don't know if there are any shreds of servility to be strewn before those of us in the 30s. But the whole idea amuses me.
At this point in my career I don't have to worry about college rankings. But they were a big deal when I was at UCSB. The Political Science Department was ranked 41st by the National Research Council --- and members of the department thought they were underrated, which wasn't a bad estimation at the time. I didn't check at the time, but the NRC updated its rankings in 2010, posted at The Monkey Cage, "The NRC Rankings of Political Science Departments." And here more at the Chronicle of Higher Education, "Doctoral Programs by the Numbers." UCSB comes in at #39 according to factors measuring if the program has "similar features to programs viewed by faculty as top-notch." UC Berkeley ties for 1st by that measure. UCLA comes in at #8.

UPDATE II: Bill Quick links. Thanks!