The kitchen made the strained stage-whispers more disturbing

MSNBC

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It’s no accident that Alabama Sen. Katie Britt issued the Republican Party’s response to the State of the Union address from her kitchen table, since the kitchen is precisely where the GOP would prefer we women spend most of our lives.
This remarkable tableau was punctuated by the family portrait Britt shared on social media afterwards, captioned: “To the American people: Our future starts around kitchen tables just like this.
With moms and dads just like you.”Everything about Britt’s performance was a choice — a carefully crafted domestic diorama.
“Just like this” is a curious way to describe Britt’s kitchen, which is unlike any I’ve ever cooked in.
Perhaps it is unkind to critique a woman’s kitchen — we get enough guff from all sides for anything and everything, from the way we look to the way we live.
In a lot of ways, Britt’s kitchen is a trap for anyone who thinks too hard about it.
And her kitchen also serves as a shield; if we question it, we are sexists picking apart a woman’s choice to be there.
Britt is desperate to assure us that there are plenty of roles for women in the GOP’s America.
Britt is desperate to assure us that there are plenty of roles for women in the GOP’s America.
After all, there’s always lots of work to be done in the kitchen.

Sen. from Alabama is not by accident. As the kitchen is precisely where the GOP would prefer that we women spend the majority of our lives, Katie Britt delivered the Republican Party’s response to the State of the Union address from her kitchen table. Ideally, Britt would have been simultaneously kneading bread or canning beans, but the noise associated with those tasks would have made it hard to hear her strained stage whispers about murderous immigrants.

Britt posted a family photo on social media following the event, with the caption, “To the American people: Our future starts around kitchen tables just like this,” to break up the amazing tableau. with parents who are exactly like you. “.

Britt performed a carefully constructed domestic diorama, and everything about it was a choice.

I’ve never cooked in a kitchen like Britt’s, so it’s interesting that she used the phrase “just like this” to describe it. No chore charts or drawings from the kids all over the fridge. There aren’t any counters scattered with mail, mugs, or sunglasses. There is no mushy microwave or toaster filled with crumbs. Not a cow-shaped cookie jar or ceramic rooster in sight. Not even a white, crisply scripted chalkboard that said “live, laugh, love.”. Just a spotless, gray showroom for conformity to the status quo.

Maybe it’s unfair to criticize a woman’s kitchen; we receive enough flak for everything and anything, from our appearance to our lifestyle. Yet just as significant as the content of Britt’s speech was its context. Furthermore, Britt’s kitchen is worth discussing as long as she continues to portray herself as the hurting face of a GOP determined to make sure that no woman leaves her house save to fetch water for the party’s avaricious patriarchs.

To an extent, anyone delving too deeply into Britt’s kitchen will fall victim to its traps. The idea behind speaking from that position is to convey a clear message about a woman’s duty to uphold femininity even while she criticizes the nation’s most powerful political position. Additionally, her kitchen acts as a barrier; if we criticize it, we are being sexists and dissecting a woman’s decision to be there.

The right-wing Christian ideal of femininity, known as the “tradwife,” is ascendant on social media for a reason: it is entrenched in white supremacist ideology and archaic politics. While working to ensure that women have fewer choices than ever before regarding our bodies, where our children attend school, and how much we can afford to feed our families, conservatives are frantically trying to make the constraints of traditional womanhood and required motherhood seem appealing, even soothing.

However, every aspect of Britt’s performance was deliberate — a skillfully constructed domestic drama in which a young, conventionally attractive white woman struck all the right “mama bear” notes and asserted that family values were the sole purview of conservative Americans. There is no greater blessing in life than our children, Britt explicitly pleaded to her “fellow moms.”. The whole point of the exercise was to make us forget that her party is against IVF treatments, defunding public schools, and outlawing abortion, endangering the lives and fertility of women. that Republican policies that facilitate the employment of children in dangerous jobs and allow migrant children to drown in the Rio Grande are the ones putting children in danger.

Britt is doing everything in her power to convince us that women have many roles in the GOP’s America.

In these circumstances, it would be cynical but wise to support the youngest, most attractive female senator you can find and have her launch into a diatribe about how modern America is a bloody battlefield where every grocery run is a risk to death. It’s what you do when American voters consistently show up to support abortion rights, even Republicans. When women face legal action for miscarriages, this is what you do. It’s what you do when your front-runner for president is found guilty of sexual assault and faces a fraud fine exceeding $450 million.

Britt is desperate to tell us that in the America of the GOP, women have many roles. In the end, there’s always a ton of work to be done in the kitchen.

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