White House Communications Director Hope Hicks

White House Communications Director Hope Hicks

Hope Hicks, the departing White House communications director, is all the rage among political reporters this week. It's quintessential Trump White House drama, and the American populace is eating it up.

A question, though: Was Hicks treated fairly by the media?

Here's one take:

"In media coverage, her modeling 'career' serves as an important backdrop to her current role, a signal of her inexperience at best. This isn’t the standard in journalism or the standard the same press corps has applied to this White House. In the long line of men who’ve also left the West Wing, no outlet has highlighted their part-time jobs or activities in high school. That wouldn’t be relevant. And it’s not for Hicks either.

"This isn’t the only example of gendered media coverage of Hicks. Routinely, major media outlets have questioned Hicks’s experience, doubted her contributions to the campaign and inside the White House, and implied her looks are relevant ... to anything. It adds up to another insidious narrative about a woman in power that is familiar to successful women everywhere."

That's a strong opinion from Vox.com's Laura McGann. But the case McGann presents is just as powerful and, in my opinion, illustrates what she calls the "insidious narrative" about women in power. If anything, McGann's point that the 29-year-old Hicks hadn't modeled since she was 16 proves that the male-driven media too often highlighted that part of her resume when other sections were more relevant for her White House role.

She continues:

"The old saying holds up all across media: Women are seen more than heard. And it’s tough even for newspapers to let it go."

-- Phillip Tutor