Women, we work for us, not him


Jina Han

CNN’s morning show co-host Don Lemon was under fire for his sexist/ageist remarks against Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley during a February broadcast.

Women do not have a prime: Women have all but time. 

Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley’s directed ageist remarks toward 80-year-old President Joe Biden Feb. 16 and demanded cognitive tests for politicians older than 75. “CNN This Morning” co-host Don Lemon took to the air his impressions of the 51-year-old female’s occupational capacity following her age discriminatory comment. 

“Nikki Haley isn’t in her prime, sorry! When a woman is considered to be in her prime is her 20s and 30s and maybe 40s,” Lemon said. “​​Don’t shoot the messenger; I’m just saying what the facts are. Google it!”

Instantaneously, fellow co-host Poppy Harlow rebuked Lemon’s sexist comments by rectifying his “facts” to be reflective of the sexual and reproductive prime of women, not their professional prime. 

Had I been seated beside Lemon, a demeanor identical to Harlow’s — baffled and perturbed — would have preceded a verbal stream of female defense. 

I have, fortunately, yet to stumble upon individuals with misogynistic ideals in my personal life; however, I do not deny the existence of pervasive gender bias within the workforce and social circles.

Lemon serves as the quintessential model of a sexist, and his co-host serves as our knightess (in shining armor) — I view Harlow as an exemplar of female dominance. 

As a registered Democrat, she embodied the phrase “women support women” by confronting the misogyny beneath Lemon’s comment, regardless of Haley’s Republican stance. The women of today, I believe, should take note of such fortitude.

We need to assemble a sisterhood of empowering individuals, and we must buttress the endeavors of one another in spite of ethnic backgrounds or political oppositions. 

The CNN controversy should remind us of the why. Without Harlow’s spunk, a fraction of the audience tuning in live would have embedded Lemon’s sexist and ageist viewpoints within their judgments of working females. 

Whether a male or female, somebody must eliminate the prejudiced diction broadcast to terminate the ongoing cycle of worldwide sexism.

Has the public deemed it just to marginalize women for surpassing a specified age? Will directors and CEOs dispose of female employees solely upon their age?


As long as men like Lemon go on to spread such convictions without intervention, the answer will remain yes.

The social patriarchy and the male prerogative to define a woman’s “prime” withhold the female population from attaining the accolades men may receive beyond their 40s or 50s.

Editor-in-chief of Vogue magazine Anna Wintour: 73 years old. Vice president of the United States of America Kamala Harris: 58 years old. Age plays no role in the productive agility of a woman, and the mentioned females demonstrate just that.

As women, we must reassert the term “prime.” We will remain competent and capable until we choose not to be, not when a man asserts we’ve surpassed our time. 

The month of March — Women’s History Month — should nudge all women and men alike to model the immediate route Harlow took as a reporter broadcasting live. Regardless of the potential public backlash or company repercussions, she disputed her colleague’s sexist attitude.