Hillary Clinton Erased From History? Not So Fast!

(This was originally posted on Mad Art Lab.) A Brooklyn based Hasidic Newspaper Der Zeitung published the now iconic photo by Pete Souza of President Obama and his national security team with Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton and national security team member, Audrey Tomason photoshopped out. Why would they do that you ask? They did it because that magazine does not publish any photos of women. It is against their religious beliefs. The image of a woman is just too tempting and too sexy and it’s too distracting for all the mens who might want to, you know, just read the paper to get their news without getting all that Hillary Clinton sexiness in their eyes.

It’s better to totally deny historical facts than to print a photo of a woman.

Original photo:

Photo that was published in Der Zeitung via Jezebel:

The magazine released the following statement:

In accord with our religious beliefs, we do not publish photos of women, which in no way relegates them to a lower status. Publishing a newspaper is a big responsibility, and our policies are guided by a Rabbinical Board. Because of laws of modesty, we are not allowed to publish pictures of women, and we regret if this gives an impression of disparaging to women, which is certainly never our intention. We apologize if this was seen as offensive.

Sorry, fellas. Not good enough. It is offensive. You can’t just remove women from a major moment in history with a click of the mouse and then attempt to justify it with a some BS about modesty. We are proud of powerful women in positions of leadership. We are proud of the hard work they do and we are proud that some women have managed, despite misogyny and discrimination in the name of religion, to reach positions of power and respect. We understand that women are more than merely tempting, baby-making sex objects. We also realize that women might actually want to read newspapers and news sources and look at photos with other women in them and if young women see other women making history, those young women might follow the same path. And we also understand that the majority of men aren’t idiots who are overwhelmed by photos of ladies in business suits. Give the people a little credit.

And bottom line: Those women were there.

So the Skepchick Network has decided to even out the score. We have played our own photoshop game and have welcomed Hillary with open arms into multiple facets of the historical record. Enjoy!

*Special thanks to all Skepchick Network participants who helped in the add Hillary to history project: Steve DeGroof, Brian George, Maki Naro, Ashley Hamer, Mindy Townsend, Christopher Tucker, Felicia Gilljam and me, Amy Davis Roth.

*Apologies to Audrey Tomason. We would have added you too if we had more time and more images of you but we definitely photoshopped you into our hearts!

Amy Roth

Amy Roth

Amy Davis Roth (aka Surly Amy) is a multimedia artist who resides in Los Angeles, California. She makes Surly-Ramics She is the fearless leader of Mad Art Lab and cohost of Makers' Hustle Podcast Support her on Patreon. Follow her on twitter: @SurlyAmy or on Google+.

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  1. May 10, 2011 at 3:45 pm —

    When I read this the other day, there were 2 issues that came to me.

    If seeing the woman is too exciting, they could cover her with a black mark rather than pretending she is not even there. This is still bad, but consistent with the reason they claimed they needed to remove Hillary from the photo. They went to a lot of work to remove both females from the image. Which indicates a lie that women were not involved in this story.

    Also, the image came from the official Whitehouse Flickr stream:

    Where it CLEARLY states:
    This official White House photograph is being made available only for publication by news organizations and/or for personal use printing by the subject(s) of the photograph. The photograph may not be manipulated in any way and may not be used in commercial or political materials, advertisements, emails, products, promotions that in any way suggests approval or endorsement of the President, the First Family, or the White House.”

    Now, there have been many photoshops of the picture all over the internet. But if used as an official image from the Whitehouse on a news site…it is not to be altered.

    • May 13, 2011 at 5:40 am —

      I don’t know, that seems a little ambiguous. It could be saying it can’t be manipulated in a way that suggests approval or endorsement.

  2. May 10, 2011 at 3:51 pm —

    Go Hilary! I laughed out loud at the photos and then, well, I stopped laughing. The photo of the Vietnamese prisoner being executed by Hilary went too far for me.

    • May 10, 2011 at 3:51 pm —

      She is holding a flower.

      • May 10, 2011 at 5:09 pm —

        To be somewhat fair, regardless of what she’s holding, that is an image of a man that died at that very instance.

        • May 11, 2011 at 10:43 am —

          It’s interesting that this image is considered disturbing but the JFK one isn’t…

          • May 11, 2011 at 10:47 am

            Perhaps because the JFK pic is not one of the very moment the bullet enters his head, which the other is.

    • May 10, 2011 at 4:10 pm —

      Gun. Flower. To those with extreme allergies, it’s all the same.

    • May 11, 2011 at 5:16 am —

      I was pretty uncomfortable with that one too.

  3. May 10, 2011 at 3:51 pm —

    Hilarious photoshops guys!

  4. May 10, 2011 at 3:53 pm —

    Don’t you check your facts? :-)

    The newspaper is called Di zeitung and lives at

    • May 10, 2011 at 4:03 pm —

      I’m not sure what you are saying. The Brooklyn-based publication Der Zeitung is also sometimes spelled Tzitung. Is it the “Di” part you are referring to? Also, I have been informed that more than one magazine has run the photo. I linked to the blog that I originally found the story from.

      • May 10, 2011 at 4:33 pm —

        They seem to call them self “Di zeitung” which I think is Jidish while “Der Zeitung” is the newspaper in German. No big deal, but “Di zeitung” is more Google-friendly :-)

        By the way, love the post.

        • May 12, 2011 at 4:29 am —

          Nope… “Die Zeitung” is “the newspaper” in German. “Der” is the wrong gender.


          All joking aside… I have no idea why they call their newspaper “der Zeitung”. Mere ignorance of the German language… or do they fear that a “female” newspaper might turn on their readers?

  5. May 10, 2011 at 4:01 pm —

    Very nice, Amy.

    On the reason they did this: I don’t think this is a case of women being too exciting for the Hasidim. I think it’s a matter of women being unclean, or potentially unclean. They made up this bit about women being too respected to be depicted.

    After all, the practice comes from Leviticus and interpretations derived from it. There is nothing there about photographs, and really, nothing there about respecting women. There’s a lot about women being unclean, though.

  6. May 10, 2011 at 4:19 pm —

    BTW, I love that picture of Einstein and Curie et al at the Solvay conference. I think one of the guys in the back might be Heisenberg. But I am uncertain.

    • May 10, 2011 at 5:19 pm —


    • May 10, 2011 at 5:31 pm —

      Ha! :-D

      As far as I know. Front row: Planck, Curie, Lorentz, Einstein, Langevin. Middle row: Knudsen, Bragg, Clinton (sitting in for Kramers), Dirac, Compton. Back row: Piccard, Henriot, Ehrenfest, Herzen, Donder, Schrodinger, Verschaffelt.

    • May 10, 2011 at 10:05 pm —

      I see what you did there.

  7. May 10, 2011 at 4:33 pm —

    Oh, also, this is the same community that thinks that female cyclists shouldn’t ride on the public thoroughfares of in their neighborhood:;jsessionid=1689D29EF5FF7BC589065920519231EE

  8. May 10, 2011 at 4:33 pm —

    Don’t forget The Mary Sue also photoshopped Hillary.

  9. May 10, 2011 at 4:52 pm —

    So if they don’t publish photos of women, then… why did they publish that photo? It seems like the consistent thing would be simply to not publish it, rather than erase Hillary from existence in violation of the White House’s terms and all semblance of actual journalism. In trying to follow their newspaper’s rule, they violated much larger rules of integrity.

    By the way, I love the photos with Hillary inserted. Nicely done.

    • May 10, 2011 at 9:48 pm —

      I agree. What they should have done was take the high road and basically say that since they’re too misogynistic to print photos of women, that they wouldn’t use the photo at all. If they insist on excluding women, then they should just exclude everything that involves women instead of pretending that women weren’t involved. If they don’t like the way the modern world involves half the population, then they should cut themselves off from it completely and not just pick the parts they like.

  10. May 10, 2011 at 5:15 pm —

    Disturbing. It is certainly not better to deny historical facts, in fact it is a violation of Jewish law to rewrite history in this manner.

  11. May 10, 2011 at 5:22 pm —

    So, would they be okay with people who were uncomfortable with Jews removing them from history?
    Granted, that is usually done in a bit more extreme way, but still. Creepy.

    • May 10, 2011 at 5:32 pm —

      I’m hoping I’m just misreading your comment. Are you asking if they (I am assuming you mean the paper) are OK with people (who are uncomfortable with Jews) wanting to remove Jews from history, with a nod to the Holocaust? Because that is kind of creepy as well. If I’m misreading/interpreting, my apologies.

      • May 10, 2011 at 7:10 pm —

        I think mrmisconception has a point. The second that occured to me when I read this post was that I would think the Hasidic community would be loathe to revise history as there are idiots out there trying to convince people that the Holocaust didn’t happen.

      • May 10, 2011 at 8:29 pm —

        I was pointing out that if someone were to remove Jews from pictures they would, rightfully, be up in arms.
        The second part was a too cheeky jab at Holocaust denial. No disrespect was meant. Sarcasm doesn’t always scan well online.
        I was going to ask if they would approve if an Aryan newspaper had removed the president from the same picture, but the ridiculousness of removing anyone is as equal and I thought they might care more if Jews were targeted.

      • May 10, 2011 at 8:31 pm —

        Plus I should have pointed out that I meant removing Jews from pictures of history; not from history itself.

        • May 11, 2011 at 9:18 am —

          Wonderful, since that was how I read it, again my apologies if I misinterpreted.

          • May 11, 2011 at 10:15 am

            No problem, after rereading my OP I realize that it could be read as me excusing the Holocaust.
            Interesting how one missed word can change the tenor so darkly.
            Also, I just realized this has happened before (many times, I’m sure). Enemies of Stalin had a curious habit of disappearing from pictures, (as well as in real life). It’s creepy no matter who does it.

      • May 11, 2011 at 7:25 am —

        I think it is more like photoshoping the jews out of pictures of the holocaust.

  12. May 10, 2011 at 5:35 pm —

    The FFRF mentioned this type of behavior in a podcast from 2009 (I think it was April 11?) Par for the course:

  13. May 10, 2011 at 6:50 pm —

    I think the Hasidim go too far when it comes to how they interact with the public at large. And many folks bow to them because they do not want to be perceived as anti-Semitic. In my mind what they want is not a religious matter but an ethical matter.

  14. May 10, 2011 at 7:34 pm —

    On reflection, the newspaper’s photoshopping doesn’t bother me as much as it originally did. By doing this, the Hassidic Jews are making themselves more and more irrelevant as the world moves on. Soon they’ll be a cute little inbred tourist attraction like the Amish.

  15. May 10, 2011 at 8:43 pm —

    You missed Hillary Clinton next to John Kerry at a Vietnam war protest rally.

  16. May 10, 2011 at 10:09 pm —

    The Birth Certificate one had me in tears laughing. Well done.

    My 1st thought was actually the WWII soldier kissing the woman, but with the woman photo-shopped out. That would have been a neat picture.

  17. May 10, 2011 at 10:11 pm —

    Very funny. Perhaps it would have more so if you had photoshopped Hilary’s face into the astronaut’s helmet.

    Schrodinger is in the Solvay photo, I think. Hilary better watch out, he was a known womanizer.

    • May 10, 2011 at 11:49 pm —

      She was walking onto the set. It was faked!

    • May 11, 2011 at 12:49 am —

      yah, I think Shroedinger is the guy directly above Einstein in the back row. I like it that they put Hilary near Marie Curie the only (other) woman in the picture.

      This whole business is so silly, that it’s hard to take seriously. Of course, this idea that men have such poor control of their behavior that they might do something horrific at the sight of a woman, although bizarrely stupid, is quite pervasive. The corollary, of course, is that men aren’t to blame when they harass, abuse or rape women because, well, the women have those sexy bits.

    • May 11, 2011 at 10:19 am —

      That’s a ‘catty’ remark!

  18. May 10, 2011 at 11:48 pm —

    Full of win. Mazel tov!!!

  19. May 11, 2011 at 2:34 am —

    3 things to the publishers of an an obviously dogmatic rag
    1). This is disparaging to women
    2). If you didn’t hate women so much you would have chosen to not include the picture. Instead you decided to modify it by erasing the two very important women that were part of that history making moment
    3). It’s funny that publishing your rag is such a big reaponibity for such ‘big’ men. But the responsibility to control your own actions as such ‘big’ men is obviously non exsistamt and you blame us ‘small’ women for it.

    This, as a woman, pisses me off. I don’t understand why women aren’t outraged by this.

    I like the comment about what if Jewish people were edited out of important historical photographs. Its hypocrisy for a groups that should understand what hatred feels like.

    (btw I like the cat holding Hilary the best)

  20. May 11, 2011 at 8:33 am —

    I just noticed the woman in the back of the original photo, standing next to the Secretary of Looking Like David Duchovny, got wiped away too.

    If Obama wasn’t a secret Muslim extremist, he would have known not to offend Hasid sensibilities and kept all women out of the room when a camera is in there. (I just noticed that wanton trollop’s wrists are exposed too.)

  21. May 11, 2011 at 12:36 pm —

    Somebody troll them. Make them print a picture of woman who kinda looks manly, they thinking it’s a man, and then laugh at their mistake.

  22. May 11, 2011 at 1:00 pm —

    I like how she is striding purposefully along, and Big Foot is glancing at her and thinking WTF?

  23. May 12, 2011 at 12:24 pm —

    Since this paper apparently deals with world issues and Israel, depending on how long they have been around, how did they address news stories when Golda Meir was prime minister of Israel?

  24. May 12, 2011 at 5:56 pm —

    Free Williamsburg did a slightly different take on it.

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