Why Hasn't a Woman Moderated a General Election Presidential Debate in 20 Years?
We've missed that part of our presidential election tradition has stagnated, perhaps even regressed. Therefore, every four years for three separate general election presidential debates we let the Commission on Presidential Debates tell our children and the world that apparently moderating the U.S. general election presidential debate is only a man's thing.
Every four years we watch two to three debates in the fall before that Big Tuesday in November. So, we've watched four presidential election years go by (1996, 2000, 2004, 2008); we've witnessed 12 general election debates in the 20 years since Carol Simpson acted as moderator, and we haven't seen a woman moderate since (I have counted the third debate that followed Carol's service, and in 1996 we only had two presidential debates).
The sophomore activists of Montclair High School are right. It appears that we've accepted that the image and role model for moderator of these historic events is preferably male. What's up with that? How did we miss this subtle message and its implications about which gender should question our final choices for potential "leader of the free world," and do we want to send a different message?
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