How Clueless is Chris Matthews?

This clueless man is a danger to women.

This clueless man is a danger to women.

I realize Chris Matthews is famous for coming out with bizarre remarks, but this one just might take the cake. On Wednesday night’s edition of Hardball, Matthews was interviewing Andrea Mitchell about Hillary Clinton’s political prospects. This was in the context of a discussion about Hillary’s speech at the Vital Voices Awards on Tuesday night. Vital Voices is an organization that Hillary co-founded with Madeline Albright in 1997.

Matthews’ blunders began when he welcomed Mitchell by saying, “You’re one of the great feminists of your time, but you don’t push it.”

Mitchell said that many women, including her 95-year-old mother want to see Hillary win the presidency–want to see a woman in the White House. Nevertheless she noted that Joe Biden was also on-stage with Hillary at the event and got a very good reception.

Mitchell said that Biden, in particular, has “street cred” with women because of his advocacy for women on many fronts, including the Violence Against Women Act. In his speech on Tuesday, Biden called it the “ultimate abuse of power” for a man to strike a woman or a child.

At this point Matthew went completely off the rails. He actually asked Mitchell if “wife beating” is “something women really worry about.”

Here’s the transcript of the interaction from Real Clear Politics.

CHRIS MATTHEWS: Is that close to the bone, the idea of wife beating some old — or beaters?

ANDREA MITCHELL: That was part of it.

MATTHEWS: Yeah, but is that something that women really worry about —

MITCHELL: Yes

MATTHEWS: — men being brutal?

MITCHELL: The Violence Against Women Act —

MATTHEWS: At home? In the home?

MITCHELL: Yes, domestic violence.

You have to listen to Matthews’ tone of voice to understand how outrageous this was. He sounded incredulous. Unfortunately I couldn’t embed the video, but you can watch it at RCP. How Andrea Mitchell remained calm through all this, I can’t imagine. I really have to hand it to her. I think I would have been tempted to start screaming and keep screaming until NBC security dragged me off the set.

I hope someone sits Matthews down and forces him to read some of the statistics on violence against women–most of which takes place within families or romantic relationships. Here is some basic stats from DomesticViolenceStatistics.org:

Every 9 seconds in the US a woman is assaulted or beaten.

Around the world, at least one in every three women has been beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused during her lifetime. Most often, the abuser is a member of her own family.

Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women—more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined.

Studies suggest that up to 10 million children witness some form of domestic violence annually.
Nearly 1 in 5 teenage girls who have been in a relationship said a boyfriend threatened violence or self-harm if presented with a breakup.

Everyday in the US, more than three women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends.
Ninety-two percent of women surveyed listed reducing domestic violence and sexual assault as their top concern.

Men who as children witnessed their parents’ domestic violence were twice as likely to abuse their own wives than sons of nonviolent parents.

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And here is some more in-depth information from the American Bar Association.

Is Chris Matthews getting senile? Either that or he is so completely ignorant that he should retire immediately or be fired.


25 Comments on “How Clueless is Chris Matthews?”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    I suppose MSNBC will just let this go…

  2. NW Luna says:

    That is appalling. Just shows how inconsequential women’s reality is to some men. They can’t imagine it’s a problem because insult, intimidation, threats, and demands for sexual subservience is just what they do all the time.

    If I’d been Andrea Mitchell it would be hard to keep from punching Matthews in the snout. And spitting on him. Then I’d say, incredulously, “That bothers you? Is that something that really bothers you?”

    • HT says:

      If I were a violent woman, rather than having been the recipient of violence, I would say I like your Andrea Mitchell scenario, however………. oh hell I love it. Wish she had done that. Brilliant rejoinder. Thanks for that Luna. Made me laugh at the clip I watched.

      • HT says:

        BTW Chrissie Butlicker Mathews is not good enough to be called a dork, and I cannot in all honesty defame our Neanderthal relatives. That leaves me nothing to call him beyond him being the paramecium of the media. Unfortunately the media has become the swamp that provides the correct scum filled sphere in which paramesia thrive.

      • NW Luna says:

        HT, I also have been the recipient of violence .. which perhaps, along with my personality, makes me have a fiery reaction to such callous stupidity as Matthew’s toward abuse of women.

        Although fighting back if personally harassed or assaulted is your best chance of getting away — the creeps will want an easier target — it won’t help in a TV interview. I must think of snappy and pointed verbal rebuttals. Not that I’m likely to be on TV, thank the deities.

  3. Pat Johnson says:

    It can’t be said often enough: Chris Matthews is an asshole!

  4. Fannie says:

    Happy Birthday to Maya Angelou…………………85 years old today.

    • bostonboomer says:

      Today is also Muddy Waters’ birthday.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Also the 45th anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination.

      • HT says:

        Holy smokes has it really been that long? I remember the shook I felt when the news reports came on. I was just an idealistic young adult in those days. How time flies and little changes.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Yup. In November, it will be 50 years since JFK was killed.

      • jawbone says:

        When I heard that yesterday was the 45th anniversary of MLK’s assassination, I was stunned that more was not being made of this horrible watershed.

        I also was reminded how much time has passed, and, once again, felt intense sadness for the loss of so many great humanitarian minded public figures in that era: JFK, an assassinated president; MLK, the great voice for true justice and fairness for all, but especially the poor; and, then, RFK, who seemed at the time the last hope for a liberal and justice and fairness minded president.

        I weep whenever I think of these losses — losses for our nation, for the world. I’m tearing up as as I type.

        If only…. Thoughts which do nothing to change things, and, it seems, we’re becoming more and more powerless to change the role of wealth in our society.

    • jawbone says:

      I also remember that it was a cool but sunny day when there was a huge protest and memorial march throughout the Inner City in Milwaukee. Black and white, young and old, all together.

      A young woman we met on the walk suggested we stop to meet her grandmother, who was unable to make the walk, It was the first time I had ever been in the house of a truly poor person. — a truly poor black person. I was…stunned. Everything was spare, but immaculately clean and neat. And …there were photos of JFK and MLK and Christ on the living room wall.

      We talked, I tried to not feel out of my element, to feel natural. Not sure how well I did.

      This was not the the first time I’d been in a black person’s home, but those people were fellow students.

      I don’t remember everything, but, for some reason, the memory of the photos on the wall has forever stuck with me.

      • NW Luna says:

        Thanks for that narrative, jawbone. How wonderful you all stopped to meet and visit with the grandmother.

  5. bostonboomer says:

    Tomorrow’s job number is not looking good.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/non-fam-payrolls-whisper-number-2013-4

  6. Silent Kate says:

    Chris obviously hasn’t watched Andrea’s promo for MSNBC where she talks about literally being pulled out of an interview or who could forget the sexual assault on Lara Logan. This isn’t just some poor woman facing some stereotypical man with a wife beater shirt on as Chris seems to think…This is about all women who always need to be aware of their surroundings. All of us regardless of age constantly think about where we are and who is around us. I know I’m not alone on this. I think about where I’m going to park and have my keys ready…no fumbling for them in my purse. Chris is clueless.

  7. ecocatwoman says:

    Most evenings I have MSNBC on the TV. I’ve made it a point for the last several months to avoid Matthews’ show at all costs. He said something in this same vein a couple of months ago that was the final tipping point for me – it may have been about VAWA or rape. I think I’ve blocked it out. I can’t help but think he was either raised under glass like a hot house flower or is an alien from another planet. I can’t think of anything else to explain his obvious cluelessness about life on earth.

  8. Pilgrim says:

    You ask if Matthews is getting senile. A reasonable question.

    I often think he’s descending to madness. His screaming, and spitting and stupidity. Now I usually turn him off after the first thirty seconds or so. I haven’t yet gotten around to having that channel deleted from my cable packages, but still intend to. The rabid partisanship has gotten on my nerves. Watch PBS instead.

  9. Sweet Sue says:

    What gets me is that his wife is a newcaster; she must have some basic facts at her command.
    Do they ever talk?
    Really, I’ve long suspected that Matthews is in the early stages of Alzheimer’s.