Amanda W dropped a link into the Monday Blogaround thread to a post of hers in which she notes:
I don't like it when people pick on Condoleezza Rice for her facial expressions. The fact that a woman's face at rest isn't pleasant and bright shouldn't be something to use against her. I don't get the sense that she's deliberately scowling; there's room for interpretation there, certainly, but I don't feel that she should have to walk about with a smile plastered on her face at all times to be acceptable to the public at large.
Since that was directed at me, I want to just quickly respond to it:

1. Thanks for holding my feet to the fire and for letting me know you raised the issue, Amanda.

2. As I noted in comments earlier, "I quite honestly don't think it's a commentary on the person at whom Condi is looking; her relaxed face is just kinda glowery, with which I can sympathize. I have kind of a glowery relaxed face, because the edges of my mouth naturally turn down," and it was something of which I had to be aware in a professional setting. In my private life, no one else's business. In a professional setting, I couldn't very well meet with a potential client and appear to be scowling at my boss or other colleagues while they were speaking. My graphic was cheeky, but it reflects a serious criticism. The Secretary of State looking so consistently dour is unprofessional, as a representative of the nation, just as it's unprofessional when Cheney does it (about which I've also blogged) or when Bush is grinning when he shouldn't be (about which I've blogged countless times). Diplomacy demands a consciousness of one's appearance, irrespective of one's sex—and it's something to which the Bush administration has paid precious little attention.

So, anyway, my apologies if it came across as a criticism of Rice personally as opposed to professionally.

Carry on.

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