Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, delivered the commencement address at Barnard College on Sunday. Consistent with her ridiculous tweet of the same day, Power compared the situation of women in the U.S. with those in Afghanistan. As Eric Owens of the Daily Caller reports:
Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, told the graduating class at all-female Barnard College that women continue to suffer from grave inequality in the United States. . .
Power also suggested that Afghanistan is superior to the United States in at least one way in terms of women’s rights because women currently hold 28 percent of the seats in Afghanistan’s parliament.
This is a great example of the leftist impulse to compare America unfavorably to foreign hell holes. Put aside the absurdity of assessing the the condition of women by the percentage of women its electorate freely chooses (or does not choose) for the legislature. The fate of women in Afghanistan is so parlous — thanks in significant part to the Obama administration’s plans to withdraw troops — that it’s almost obscene to compare the two countries.
For context, the Daily Caller’s Owens reminds us that the Barnard students whom Power addressed have just received an education that costs $250,000. This does not include four years of off-campus expenses in New York City or the expenses incurred during jaunts in exciting study-abroad locales such as France and Spain.
In war-torn Afghanistan, gross national income per capita is approximately $1,960, according to Owens.
But maybe college campuses are war zones for females students. Power suggested as much when she invoked the case of Emma Sulkowicz, a student across the street at Columbia University who carried a mattress around campus on her back all year to protest the school’s handling of her rape allegation.
Moreover, the cleared male student has produced numerous text messages and social media conversations from before and after the night when Sulkowicz claims he raped her. The messages undermine her claim by showing that Sulkowicz made comments about having anal sex with the male student before the night when she says he anally raped her. She also messaged him several times after that night suggesting that they should meet up.
Is Power aware that Sulkowicz’s rape allegation has been discredited? One hopes not.
But even if she’s not aware of this, it’s disgraceful that the U.S. representative to the United Nations didn’t do some fact-checking before portraying Sulkowicz as a victim and making her the poster child for the plight of America’s female college students.
Power has made herself the poster child for the smear America, moral equivalence brand of leftism.