By Claire Downs
The last time a Vice Presidential debate was exciting in recent history was unfortunately not last night. The most thrilling VP debate of late occurred in 2008, between Joe Biden and Sarah Palin. Say what you want about the ex-governor of Alaska who claimed, “I can see Russia from my house,” at least her Vice Presidential debate didn’t put us to sleep!
While watching Tim Kaine and Mike Pence’s interrupt-off at Longwood University last night, Sarah Palin made an extremely valid point. Palin noticed that when she debated Biden in ’08, she had to stand, in heels no less. HEELS! Then, she discovered that every other VP debate in recent history allowed the candidates to be seated at a table, like Pence and Kaine were afforded.
She posted all of these receipts on Facebook:
And, her caption was the ultimate clap-back.
“How is it that the dudes lucked out and got chairs over the last 20 years of VP debates minus one? Want a real test – try standing in 👠👠 for 90 mins #heelsonglovesoff”
Yes, GAWD! 90 MINUTES! And that carpet looks too thin! We sure hope Palin had some inserts!
The larger point is evident. The standards for looking “put together” in professional situations are way too high, and often, much higher than men’s. And, even if an office dress code doesn’t require heels, many women feel like it’s an implied rule. Hillary Clinton even felt this pressure with her ultra-teeny kitten heels at the first Presidential debate. That one was also 90 minutes of standing.
“Because women managers can be thought of as threatening or bossy by male counterparts or subordinates, a woman’s attire can work to soften the blow,” – said HuffPo Culture writer, Maddie Crumb in an editorial about high heels.
Last year, a receptionist at PricewaterhouseCoopers was sent home without pay for not wearing heels to work.
“I said, ‘If you can give me a reason as to why wearing flats would impair me to do my job today, then fair enough’, but they couldn’t. I was expected to do a nine-hour shift on my feet escorting clients to meeting rooms. I said I just won’t be able to do that in heels,” Nicola Thorp told The Guardian.
The incident inspired a petition in the UK to make it illegal for a company to require women to wear high heels at work. It has received over 150K signatures.
It’s safe to say that we never saw such a valid feminist statement coming from Sarah Palin! But, we’re glad she made it, because honestly, high heels HURT!