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Sunday, April 16, 2017

Ivanka Trump will Advocate for the Economic Empowerment of Women - and There's Controversy Again!

In a recent interview on CBS This Morning, Ivanka Trump said that she would advocate for the economic empowerment women in her role in her father's administration. But it was the fact that she also said that she believed most people would not actually know about her impact that has caused much controversy.

Some have interpreted this comment as making her whole 'offer' insincere. They reason that, if they can't see the results and link it to her work and advocacy, how can they know she's not just paying lip service? After all, Ivanka is quite unpopular among some sections of the community, with a recent poll of young American women giving her an over 50% disapproval rating. Others have pointed out that Ivanka offering to work behind the scenes for no recognition continues the long-standing tradition of women doing all the hard work and men getting all the recognition, and is therefore un-feminist.

But I think they have all missed an important point. In politics, it is often the invisible, behind the scenes work that is most important for outcomes, especially in the longer run. Every successful policy is usually the work of intense behind the scenes lobbying, often for a decade or more. Many progressive young people who don't understand this point want their 'activists' to stand in front of the whole country and bravely declare their undying support for a certain cause. They don't understand that this approach is often counter-productive, except for said activist's own publicity. Therefore, they end up loving insincere, publicity-seeking so-called activists.

As I previously said, I am not particularly a fan of Ivanka, and I believe we are on opposite sides of the political divide by American standards (perhaps not by Swedish standards, but that's irrelevant). But her promise to work behind the scenes for long-term outcomes sounds good. Because this is the only way things ever get done.