Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Arugula and Beer and "Elites"

Amanda Marcotte (who is apparently embroiled in some conflict over her book, but whatever) points to something that people seem to miss a bit.

Where do wine coolers sit on the elitism scale? Sure, they’re about as cheap and disgusting as you can get, more so than even Budweiser, but they are also known as girly drinks, and the slur of liberal elitism is just as much about feminizing someone as it is invoking class anxiety.

People, "elite" as it's being applied against Obama (or other Dems) has nothing to do with actual elitism. Real elites (hell, even the "real" stereotype) don't drink wine or beer necessarily; they drink expensive single-malt scotch. They don't eat arugula or NOT eat arugula... they eat whatever's trendy and expensive.

No, this is all about masculinity, and by that I mean "not gay". It's about what straight men supposedly do that gay men don't. "Real" men don't drink wine... gay men do! "Real" men don't pay attention to what they're men do! "Real" men know how to bowl... and gay men don't! "Real" men don't live in cities and drive hybrids! Gay men do!

(Real men drive pickup trucks and live on a "ranch", you see, though since not everybody can afford a ranch an overpriced, poorly made house in the exurbs will do in a pinch.)

When David Brooks et al are attacking Obama for being an "elitist", for drinking wine and eating arugula they're not saying he thinks he's above regular people. They're saying that he's womanish. They say he's fey. They say he wants to be "sodomized". They're calling him a "Batty-Man".

That's what this is about. "lol ur a fag" cleaned up for television. Nothing more.

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