Mississippi candidate hides behind dinosaurian sexism

By

Opinion

July 17, 2019 - 10:37 AM

Robert Foster wants to be governor of Mississippi — at least the male half of it. A Republican first-term state representative who’s running for the state’s top job, Foster doesn’t seem to value women much beyond their bodies.

Last week, a female reporter at Mississippi Today, a nonprofit digital news company, wrote that her request for a ride-along with the candidate had been denied — unless she brought a male colleague with her. Ride-alongs allow reporters to spend time with subjects going through their daily routine. It’s an interview technique that can give readers a closer, more detailed picture of the subject. In this case, reporter Larrison Campbell didn’t even need to spend time with Foster to find out that he is a sexist dinosaur.

Foster’s explanation for the unusual condition he put on the interview was that he feared he might be accused of having an extramarital affair if he spent time alone with a woman who was not his wife. Once the story went national, Foster explained in a tweet that he obeyed the so-called “Billy Graham rule” which is supposed to help men avoid being tempted by women or being suspected of it. He said it was a matter of “respect” for his wife.

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