02:17 - Source: CNN
Trump Fed pick: Critics are 'pulling a Kavanaugh' on me

Editor’s Note: Roxanne Jones, a founding editor of ESPN Magazine and former vice president at ESPN, has been a producer, reporter and editor at the New York Daily News and The Philadelphia Inquirer. Jones is co-author of “Say it Loud: An Illustrated History of the Black Athlete.” She talks politics, sports and culture weekly on Philadelphia’s Praise 107.9 FM. The views expressed here are solely hers. Read more opinion on CNN.

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Early in my career as a manager, one of my bosses shared his philosophy on hiring staff:

“I’m going to hire people who look like me. People from the same social background. People I like and feel comfortable around,” he told me.

Problem was, this wealthy white guy had disdain for women who didn’t accept him as a father figure or find his sexist jokes funny. He knew few people of color, clearly didn’t feel comfortable around us, or consider us — women or men of color — his equals.

Yet, I never forgot his words. I gave him points for honesty, for showing me who he was from Day 1. The misogyny, hostility and blatant racism I witnessed from him for more than a decade were never a surprise.

Sound familiar?

I feel the same way about President Donald Trump. Critics, understandably so, call him a liar. But we’d be hard-pressed to say Trump ever lied about what type of man he was – before he won the White House, or today. Trump showed us early and often, with his divisive rhetoric, misogyny and hateful speech toward communities of color. We could even say his honesty on these points got him elected.

Economist Stephen Moore is one more example of Trump’s staying true to character. Trump selecting Moore to sit on the Federal Reserve Board should surprise no one.

Moore, a conservative commentator (formerly with CNN) and former Wall Street Journal editorial board member, is a Trump mini-me, at least in tone. He’s attacked women for wanting equal pay for what he called, in the context of tennis, “inferior work” and joked about the gender pay gap.

In fact, if you closed your eyes and listened to the rantings of these two powerful men, it would be difficult to tell which man was talking, Trump or Moore:

“Here’s the rule change I propose: No more women refs, no women announcers, no women beer venders, no women anything,” Moore wrote about March Madness a in National Review column in March 2002.

“There is, of course, an exception to this rule. Women are permitted to participate, if and only if, they look like Bonnie Bernstein. The fact that Bonnie knows nothing about basketball is entirely irrelevant,” he wrote, adding that Bernstein should only be allowed to report wearing halter tops, according to CNN’s KFile.

A pretty stupid comment coming from a supposedly intelligent man. Maybe Stephen Moore needs more education:

According to a recent Gallup Poll, 51% of American women consider themselves sports fans — that’s more than 60 million women. Additionally, the NFL reports that 45% of their fans are women, while ESPN found that 49% of all Americans are sports fans.

Clearly, not only do millions of women play and watch sports but our dollars also help to drive the entire sports economy. Americans spent more than $100 billion on sports in 2017 (sporting events, sports equipment, gym memberships), according to Steven Kutz at marketwatch.com. And that’s not even including the biggest revenue driver in college and professional sports: television ratings.

I’m no economist, but I imagine the 51% of US female sports fans are a huge reason for those numbers.

Those are facts. And if Moore wants to sit on the Federal Reserve Board, which is responsible for protecting the US economy at home and abroad, he should recognize the role women play in ensuring America’s economy – not only sports economies – remain vibrant. One of the roles of the federal board is to promote consumer protection and community development.

Both Moore and Trump defend their hate speech as humor. They viciously attack critics and are indignant at any suggestion they are misogynists – with Moore going so far as to complain that he was being “Kavanaughed.” The problem with the world is that everyone has just become too politically correct, too sensitive, they argue.

But based on Moore’s public bias against women, I can’t help but question if his nomination is accepted whether he will advocate for women under the The Equal Credit Opportunity Act, a federal law created to ensure financial institutions cannot discriminate against people based on their race, color, national origin, sex, religion or marital status in deciding whether to approve their credit application.

Moore doesn’t believe women have the right to work in some of sports’ top-paying jobs. He jokes about the gender pay gap. In what other areas of the economy is he willing to exclude women?

Moore has said there needs to be a place where men can take a vacation from women. Please.

America needs a vacation from men like Moore.

It’s time to stop branding these type of men successful leaders. Stop electing them. Stop promoting them. Time for media to stop hiring them, excusing their misogyny while professing to respect women.

The hate speech of the Trump mini-me’s isn’t funny. It never was. And I’m pretty sure women, who today make up more than 50% of the US population, are tired of being asked to laugh at their own oppression.

Moore may realize this now. Thursday, he said he’ll step down if his nomination becomes a distraction for Republicans in 2020. (Following in the footsteps of the last Trump pick for the Federal Reserve, Herman Cain, former Republican presidential candidate, who was plagued by sexual misconduct allegations (which he has denied).

The White House, so far, has said it is sticking with Moore, though he has yet to be formally nominated.

But with Republicans rattled by the midterm backlash, which sent an unprecedented number of women to Congress and now, with an especially formidable opponent like Joe Biden having entered the race, it would be wise for the GOP to shy away from any unnecessary distractions.

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    It may be that the last laugh is on Stephen Moore. And, as they say, that would be sweet.