All-Male Contraception Panel Bashed By . . . All-Male Morning Joe Panel

Let he who is without a Y chromosome cast the first stone . . . Today's Morning Joe afforded viewers a study in hypocrisy: the all-male makeup of a panel at yesterday's House hearing on contraception was bashed by the show's panel consisting entirely of, yes, men. 

With Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough having the day off, Willie Geist and Mike Barnicle took guest-hosting turns.  Barnicle introduced the subject, harrumphing about "the absurd picture we just saw of basically, it looks like an all-male locker room in a golf club."  Lawrence O'Donnell and Dem congressman Elijah Cummings joined in the breast-beating. Video after the jump.

To quote Barnicle, speaking of an "absurd picture" . . .

Note: it wasn't just this Morning Joe segment which was devoid of women.  Not one woman panelist or guest appeared till the show's last half hour, and even then it was in a pre-taped segment.  We could generally care less, but the hypocrisy was simply off the charts.  Barnicle couldn't ignore the irony, alluding to the segment's all-male composition.  Note also that at yesterday's House hearing, two women did testify in a second panel.

The segment opened with a clip of Dem congresswoman Carolyn Maloney at the hearing demanding "where are the women?  When I look at this panel I don't see one single woman."  No married ones, either--rim shot!

MIKE BARNICLE: Here with us now, Democratic representative from Maryland, and ranking member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Congressman Elijah Cummings.  Congressman, before we get to the absurd picture we just saw of basically, it looks like an all-male locker room in a golf club talking about contraception, and we'll come back to all males talking about contraception with you, let's talk about the mortgage settelement.

. . .

LAWRENCE O'DONNELL: Congressman Cummings, it's Lawrence O'Donnell. At the silliest hearing I believe your committee has ever held in its history, yesterday, in the back room, when you were talking to Republicans, do you get the feeling they know how much trouble they're in on this, and that they've made a huge mistake here?

ELIJAH CUMMINGS: Lawrence, I really, it pains me to say this [ri-g-h-h-h-t], but I don't think they have a clue.  And that's the sad part about it. When I sat there, and I looked out at those men, talking about women's reproductive rights and contraception, you know, I said to myself, suppose this was, we were here talking about prostate cancer, and the only people on the panel were women. Men would be alarmed . . . After that hearing, Lawrence, you said it was one of the worst that we've had. We got more social-media response from that hearing than from anything we've done yet. And 95% of it was from women, and there were a lot of men who were embarrassed and upset also.

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.