If you have not done so already, please read the last two posts from Jewschool, and then come back here.
[Waiting for you to finish reading…] Thanks for coming back.
The subject of both of the posts I just asked you to read are intended to be eye-catching and possibly even intentionally offensive. However, the Ms. Holocaust Survivor event, was titled provocatively while the content of the event was empowering and kind. As we look at the buy-us-dinner fundraising idea from the self-proclaimed voice of the Jewish blogosphere you don’t quite get over that initial bad taste in your mouth.
Taking a deep dive into the Jewlicious fundraising ideas, and the lackluster apology/excuses of its editor, we all feel just a bit dirty.
Clearly, as was pointed out in the comments of the Jewlicious post by the same editor making the excuses, we at Jewschool love to drive traffic by talking in-side baseball. However, I am an avid fan of the sport and dabble just a bit in media criticism. And the shameful attempt to pass the buck on this sexist, misogynistic and other “big-boy words” project, could be called a two down, bottom of the 9th kind of moment.
The Optics
The men and women involved in the Jewslicious fundraiser had to know what this would look like. They had to know how it would play. But it seems like they were genuinely surprised the feminists and lefties were upset with their choice to showcase two women, described as gorgeous, in a post written by a man to raise money from philanthropists by setting up an evening on the town between said philanthropist and previously mentioned gorgeous woman. (When you lay it out like that, it does sound pretty bad doesn’t it?) If, as the excuse reads, the women were the only two available for the fundraiser, why didn’t they write the post announcing the program? The optics of this move were short-sighted and weakly executed. I look forward to reading the post about the dates…
Fixing Misogynistic Problems By Pretending to Exploit Men
So to fix the problem, CK et. al. chose to sell dates with handsome men. By evening the playing field, he reasoned in his pissy post, the feminists and lefties would shut up. (Please see this post…not really shutting up.) However, unlike the women, one of the men being sold was writing the solicitation. So, not really even. Also, when you should just apologize but you just make up excuses, you sound like Fox News.
Own it
If you take a risk, like selling bloggers to the highest bidder to raise money for your conference, you may have to deal with the consequences. Taking on significant risk brings about two things: 1. Greater reward. 2. Greater downside. In this case, it seems that an ill-informed choice lead to a risky position without full understanding of the potential impact. No risk taker is always lucky, but those who are revered by the community, are the ones who own the choices. Sure take the risk, but own the choice. Don’t sit back and blame people for not understanding the vision when this was exactly what you wanted in the first place. Our two posts and more so the Sisterhood article about this stupid idea to raise cash has given new life to the exploitation of the Jewlicious blogging staff this fundraising idea. So stop trying to say we are too sensitive or whatever else, and just own it.
These are my two cents, presented just a few hours before Shabbat East Coast Time…because like I said, I like inside baseball.