Late last year Playboy, a title whose very name brings thoughts debauchery bubbling forth, announced that they would no longer publish nude photos in their pages. This comes after recent years of more thorough Q&A's and attempts to rebrand itself as a serious source of journalism.
Now, delivering on their promise, the magazine's first non-nude issue features MSNBC powerhouse Rachel Maddow talking about Caitlyn Jenner, dating boys in high school, and the presidential campaign landscape, of course.
Playboy: What difference would it make to have a woman as president?
Rachel Maddow: It breaks the glass ceiling, which means the next woman to do it will be the second woman. Not that it always works that way. Britain had just the one; Israel had just the one. You do see when other countries get a female leader, particularly an iconic female leader, it doesn't necessarily open the floodgates. It is unusual that we're this old, robust democracy and pluralistic society, and we haven't gotten ours yet. The gender achievement at the top in every single political representation really sucks. I mean, we're super-psyched that we have 20 women senators. Yay, 20! Um, there are 100. I can do that math.
It's worse in the Republican Party, but in the Democratic Party women aren't hitting the top tiers as fast and as frequently as statistically they ought to be, even when you compare us with other countries. I can't help but think that electing a woman president might speed that pace a bit. Still, if Clinton gets elected, that's about her, and her legacy will be determined by how good a president she is. Just being a woman gets you only so far.
What's your take on Caitlyn Jenner?
I'm so pop culture illiterate that I did not know there was a connection between Bruce Jenner and the Kardashians. It also took me a long time to figure out that the Kardashians don't have jobs. But the nice thing about Caitlyn Jenner is that America gets to hear from a transgender person talking about transgender issues. The idea of transgender-equality issues being litigated by the gay community always rubbed me the wrong way. People should be able to speak for themselves on their own terms. If what the media needs to actually talk to a transgender person is for that person to be famous, then let that be step one.
Read the rest of the Playboy interview, including what kind of hate mail Maddow gets, and why Ann Coulter will never be on her show here.