Some of us with memories that still function may recall that Bush & Co. used women’s rights to drum up liberal backing for the bombing of Afghanistan—and many liberals bought it.

That seemed to be the height of cynicism—Bush/Cheney making a strong feminist appeal. But that was nothing in comparison with this; and Oprah’s a real tool for helping out. (Come to think of it, she also helped Bush/Cheney sell their invasion of Iraq, because of that vast store of A-bombs, anthrax spores and sarin buried underneath Saddam Hussein’s jacuzzi.)


Letter to Oprah Winfrey on ‘Ethical Oil’ ads
By Emma Pullman
| September 7, 2011

Dear Oprah,

I just don’t know where to begin.

I can’t find my words because I respect you so much. You’re a woman pioneer who has done much to advance the status of women globally. You’ve donated millions of dollars to various organizations, and have used your talk show to raise the profile of women’s issues. Your philanthopy has funded projects like The Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa, and Women for Women International. You’ve also used your celebrity to raise awareness of environmental causes, notably the efforts to rebuild the Gulf.

That’s why I’m so stumped right now by your choice to feature ads from on your television network.

I’m all about the work that you do, but the logic of promoting tar sands oil by appealing to our desire for women’s liberation, our desire to help protect women in despotic regimes like Saudi Arabia, is deeply flawed and misguided.

Read more.

2 Comments to ““The Keystone XL pipeline will free Saudi women!” That’s perfect crap, of course—but Oprah buys it!”

  • I’m convinced that Oprah has not realized either that the Nobel Prize letter to Obama on the Keystone project was actually done by the Nobel Women’s Initiative, based in Ottawa, by many women with a Peace Nobel Prize… And there is something more, that is even more important: tar sands will aggravate climate change, that are a growing threat for millions of women a bit everywhere, both in poor countries and certainly also in the US, as we’ve seen with so many weather disasters, lately… So, not only is the Ethical Oil Argument not true but by supporting tar sands, it’s the life of women all over the planet – poor and rich – that she helps deteriorate… And I’m sure – as we all are – that she does not want that… (By the way, of course, men will be harmed too but since we’re still in a non-egalitarian society, studies shows that everywhere, women will be more affected by climate change).

  • A very well written and supported letter. The propoganda that we’re getting these days from big oil, gas, and coal is so insidious it’s insulting. That ExxonMobil ad about how great fracking is, and now this is pure evil. I quess that Oprah is now just yet another revenue stream for the Koch brothers.

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