The Herald-Leader recently posted a “Call for Community Columnists” expressing specific interest in hearing from conservatives, women, minorities and young adults.
While I would like to think the editors are sincere, I can’t help but wonder if this is an attempt to bait conservatives and give their liberal subscribers an echo chamber to berate the writers for their ideas. Perhaps this is just a fishing expedition for “journalists” to pursue their next fake news story.
Either way, I have little hope that a column written by someone like me will change the opinions of the sort of people who subscribe to the Herald-Leader.
Because although I am a minority, I am not the right kind of minority. I am not who they really want to hear from. Though I think people like me were heard loud and clear on Nov. 8.
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As a young, professional woman, I often find myself in situations where I second guess my thoughts or am hesitant to voice my opinion. Many of my liberal friends would suggest my fear derives from belonging to a male-dominated workforce and what some call “inequality” of genders in the workplace. I choose to believe this hesitance is normal for anyone beginning their career, and that confidence comes with experience.
As a young, conservative woman, I have never felt as ostracized and marginalized for my beliefs as when the Herald-Leader published my first op-ed,Weary of progressives trying to tell me how to vote,” last October.
In the piece, I discuss my frustrations with being often disparaged and disregarded by liberal elitists. I offered a fresh point-of-view for liberal-leaning subscribers, who undoubtedly describe themselves as part of the ultra-tolerant and inclusive progressive left. The response I received was anything but tolerant or inclusive. Without even meaning to do so, I caused liberal readers to prove my exact point.
“I’m sure you’ve had lots of money. You can look at you and tell it all over you,” one person commented. If I didn’t know any better, I would think I was being profiled.
Another reader wrote that I clearly am “used to having things handed to me” and I have “never dealt with the harsh realities” of life.
How then would you describe Chelsea Clinton? I suppose her opinions are just as invalid. Oh, I forgot, being “rich” is only a sin if you are a Republican. If you are a wealthy Democrat, then by all means, please make your check out to the Democratic National Committee.
For the record, Clinton received a much more privileged upbringing than I did. After all, two poor “hillbillies” from Eastern Kentucky raised me. That truth doesn’t fit the narrative many wish to portray.
By expressing my views, I triggered a flurry of “snowflakes” across Kentucky who then launched personal attacks on everything from my appearance to my intelligence to whether or not I actually earned my way into law school.
Democrats parade themselves as the party of female empowerment, yet I did not feel the least bit empowered after reading their comments. They might as well have told me to sit down and shut up. Sorry, not a chance.
I am well aware of the responses I will receive from this column. I am sure some already have a litany of transgressions ready to throw my way. But I am not writing this for them. I am writing this for all of the women who think just like me. Their voices matter. Do not be silenced for fear of criticism. Embrace it.
Let that be what empowers you.
Jordan Morgan is an attorney who lives in Lexington.