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Erik Hoffner

Erik Hoffner is a freelance photojournalist and Outreach Coordinator for Orion magazine

April 3rd, 2012 7:32 PM

Stephen Colbert's Boys' Club

Where are all the America-hating women?

Stephen Colbert must be breathing a sigh of relief now that March is over. The pressure from VIDA's annual survey of women represented in the media was published last month, showing that from The Atlantic to The New Yorker, women are as underrepresented in bylines (in many of the nation's top publications, men write up to 75% of the stories) as they are in front of the camera on news shows like The Colbert Report.

As Fairness and Accuracy In Reporting has reported numerous times, like this study of Sunday talking-head shows, women are usually outnumbered 3 to 1 by the boys. The Daily Show, which has inexplicably won more Emmy Awards than Colbert, was criticized for its 2010 guest ratio of 79% men to 21% women, and singled out for its dearth of female correspondents, while female guests on PBS' NewsHour only topped 20% in the 2000s after dawdling in the teens for some time, according to this count

So the good news is that during March 2012, The Colbert Report featured many more women than usual, reaching a ratio of about 27%. Stephen clearly heard VIDA's call! However, this trend may hide a troubling question, and the ratio of Colbert guests may soon be returning to my estimate of 2011 guests: 85% men to 15% women. Not counting bands. They don't count. 

The question is: why the imbalance? Women are in the majority, but it's not bias, because Colbert clearly doesn't 'see gender,' just as he's proven numerous times that he doesn't see color. So what accounts for it?

This humble blogger would submit that men hate America more than women, and must be brought under the hot glare of Colbert's lights to explain themselves with much greater frequency. Notice Al Gore's 2011 appearance, not to mention that the proprietor of this site, Michael Moore, appeared twice last year. What does that tell you?

Men! Be more like women and love, love America at least as much. Then we'll see more of the fairer sex discussing the big issues of the day on The Colbert Report. What it means that April 2012's guest ratio is 50/50 so far is anyone's guess, or does Gov. Nikki Haley really hate America that much?

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