Dear Gloria Steinem,
During an interview with Bill Maher you said that, "When you’re young, you’re thinking, ‘Where are the boys? The boys are with Bernie.'" This suggests that women are only supporting Sanders so they could meet boys.
I understand you are frustrated. It is always frustrating, as a feminist, to see Hillary incur significantly more criticism than a man ever would. It is always difficult to know that the exact reason why certain male candidates are adored would be the exact reason a female candidate would be despised (i.e. Bernie Sanders as a crazy grandpa figure). The scrutiny which Clinton experiences is disproportionate and yes, that is unfair and disgusting.
Moreover, I am sure you are disappointed that Clinton is being contested by Sanders. You support her as a candidate and before the campaigning really began, you thought that Clinton was a shoe-in. Finally, after a long time climbing "the ladder," feminism would finally reach this postmark. Now, you are frustrated she doesn't have the same widespread support you feel she deserves, in part because of unjustified criticism.
You are not responding to these frustrations appropriately.
Instead of attempting to reason with young women, you have chosen to condescend to them.
Not only is your comment incredibly heteronormative, it delegitimizes the political opinion of all young women. As a young woman who supports Bernie Sanders, I am incredibly offended that you would dismiss me as only motivated by romantic endeavors. I, like many young women who support Sanders, am ambitious and driven. I have many other interests besides the pursuit of male attention. Moreover, I can understand the political perspectives created by each candidate and choose based on my political beliefs. I do not understand how can you approach the complex reasons why many young women support Sanders and do not support Clinton with such a lack of consideration.
I appreciate that you have since apologized, but I just can't understand how a prolific feminist icon could misstep to the point of spreading an anti-feminist message.
A feminist Bernie Sanders supporter