Lexie writes again, on the insidious nature of feminism

A guest post from Lexie:

 

The Feminist Fifth Column

Feminism has taken a battering of late and there is a growing number of women who’d rather not be called feminists.  Many of us feel relieved and reassured, but this is no time to be complacent.  Feminism is far from being in its death throes.  The danger, as so often is the case, is within.

Women’s ‘rights’ are only the tip of the iceberg.  The most profound damage feminism has done to society is in the way we think, particularly the way women think about themselves.  What men think of women is another topic which I’ll leave for another day, and what women who identify as feminists think is a basket case which I’ll leave to the psychologists.  The women I want to talk about are the ones who don’t think of themselves as feminists, or if they do they reject some of it as ‘extreme’ or ‘radical’.  These women are the fifth column of feminism, their own worst enemy, collaborators in the feminist quest for dominance.

These women remain under the feminist delusion that they are second class citizens.  They seek to prove themselves like the feminist trying to break a supposed glass ceiling, just in different ways.  They may claim to be old-fashioned because they stay at home with their children or because they expect men to be the primary breadwinners, but they are modern women with modern ideas.  They are still women who want to be in control.

Stay-at-home mothers may appear old-fashioned, but listen to them talk about their choice and you will understand.  They are not at home simply because their family needs them there (though they will claim this) – that is secondary.  The primary reason they are at home is they choose to be there.  Listen to the pride in her voice when one of them tells you “I could be earning as much as my husband but I choose to stay at home”.

Marital relations are another sham, for the most part.  The devotion of these non-feminist women is very much dependent on getting their own way.  Husbands live under the constant unspoken threat of separation and divorce.  They know the courts will grant custody to their wives and that their wives’ choice to stay at home will go severely against them in any financial settlement.  Shouting at your wife is now considered domestic violence, and the upshot of this (even in ‘old-fashioned’ households) is that men have learnt to placate and pander to their wives.  Their wives lap this up as if it is their due, like good feminists, and in turn belittle and make fun of their ‘hopeless’ husbands.

Even pro-life conservatives have fallen into the trap, proclaiming that abortion is wrong because women are ‘victims’ coerced into abortion.  They might tell you that the unborn child is a separate body within the mother’s, but they’re still obsessed with choice.  They will tell you that women need to be enlightened into making the right choice, and that society or men force them into wrong choices.  At the end of the day, they are not willing to admit that abortion is murder, an earlier form of infanticide, and that no man or woman should have the choice to kill a defenceless child.  The focus is on women’s choices and how they ’deserve better’ and God forbid that you should call one a murderer.

This is all part of a general disavowal of responsibility.  You’ll often find it cloaked as chivalry in more traditional circles.  But just because it’s found among those who like tradition doesn’t mean it’s that open-hearted male chivalry of tradition.  Instead, we find a female demand for men to be gentlemen, an insistence that women must be revered and respected and that when women don’t act in a way worthy of respect that it’s not their fault.  Nothing is a woman’s fault in the ranks of the fifth column.  If she dresses like a slut it’s because society has told her to, if she’s promiscuous it’s because men are greedy for sex, if she has an abortion it’s because she didn’t get enough support.  They come up with dozens of reasons men are to blame for the way women act.  Responsibility and moral agency are thrown out of the window in an unholy scramble to shift the blame.

Try suggesting to some of these supposedly traditional women that women should act like ladies if they want to be treated like ladies and you’ll find yourself on the receiving end of howls of outrage.  They will tell you that women need to be revered so that they believe in themselves and their worthiness, that girls are indoctrinated and brainwashed into indecency.  They don’t know what morality is, they claim.  Women have no idea how to be ladies.  They can’t help it when immersed in such a cesspit of a society, and it’s up to men to treat them better.  Women can’t be expected to act like ladies unless they’re treated as such, it seems.  Men, on the other hand, should know better and act like gentlemen.  No excuses for them!

Perhaps most telling, though, is the appearance of women.  This has become a holy of holies for women of all persuasions, ground upon which men tread at their peril.  Men who suggest women should lose weight or wear skirts are condemned by feminists and non-feminists alike.  Any criticism of a woman’s appearance can be construed as ‘shaming’.  Even fairly traditional women scoff at skirts or dresses as everyday wear – they’re reserved for special occasions when they want to stand out – and they are bolstered by popular culture’s lies that they are uncomfortable and unsuitable for ‘real women’.  Tracksuit pants, jeans, leggings, and hoodies have become the new stay-at-home-mum uniform.  There’s no need to wear an apron in the age of cheap, mass-produced garments.  But uniforms don’t satisfy women’s need to be ‘special’, so they seek other ways of distinguishing themselves.  Tattoos, once the preserve of male criminals, are now flaunted by the respectable. Women dye their hair the most unnatural of colours.  And piercings are just another means of making a statement.  The question is: what statement are they making?  And are they so juvenile that the only way they can communicate with the world is to do something wild and unexpected with their appearance?  What statement are women in their forties dressed in skimpy clothing bopping along to their teenage children’s music making?  That you can dress mutton as lamb?

It’s not exactly profound, and what you get when you chip off the facade is feminism with a few other things thrown in for good measure.  Women still want to be in control, they don’t want to be told what to do.  There’s a niggling feminist belief they haven’t managed to shake off: that they’re not equal to men, that they’re not valued as much as they should be… even though any rational analysis will tell you the opposite.  You see, feminism plays on women’s irrationality and emotionalism.  It taunts them until their pride rears up and they seek to prove themselves in some way.  The responsibility of nurturing a child into adulthood is seldom enough for these women.

Thus, the obsession with ‘me time’ was born. It’s a good note to finish on, because it highlights the problem: me, me, me.  They have to pursue higher education, work out every day, travel the world, be politically active, ‘nail’ the latest fad, cook meals like a chef, run a propaganda network  – oops, I mean maintain a page on social media – catalogue every moment of their child’s infancy, and the list goes on.  It’s been a long time since women embraced a role of service to family and community.  It’s all become about conquering goals or dominance.

Dominance in such worldly terms, though, translates into psychological and spiritual slavery. Women may reject the aggressive activism of the more vocal feminists, but most still believe they have something to prove.  This inferiority complex manifests itself in different ways, but every time it does feminism grows stronger.

I sometimes imagine my long dead grandmother surveying how the world has changed since she was born more than a century ago and asking me what’s wrong with just being a wife and mother, and why it isn’t enough for these women.  I wonder if women stopped trying to be and do everything they might have the time to build a community of mothers that affirmed their self-worth instead of making ‘statements’ to a world that doesn’t listen.  I don’t have all the answers, but I do know that just as any man who labours to feed his family should feel it is enough so should a woman who cares for that family at home should feel it is enough.  Some will try to call that feminism, but it isn’t, because it isn’t about telling women they are valued or proving that women are valued.  It isn’t even about women’s self-esteem. 

Ultimately, women do have a choice, but it’s a harder choice than the ones feminists rant about because it involves lifelong reform, an ongoing rejection of bossiness and bitchiness.  It means choosing to think less about me, me, me and just getting on with the job.  That’s what men do.  They aren’t constantly affirmed for being men.  They don’t have to tell the world how much they ought to be valued.  After all, when was the last time you saw an article on the value of male breadwinners?  It’s too late for some, but not for the next generation.  Boys learn they are not the centre of the universe and grow up.  It’s time we taught girls to do that too.

 

 

P.S. Many women will take this personally.  Those to whom it is not addressed will know who they are simply because they will see the truth in what I have written and nod sadly.  The rest will probably want to tell me all about how men have faults too.  They do, of course, but that’s not the topic of this article, and if you want to talk about the problems with men after reading this then you’ve just proved my point.  All I’ll say is: for once this is about you, so take responsibility.

 

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by fuzziewuzziebear on June 7, 2017 at 10:43 am

    Great post. You touched on a lot of points that are certain to generate anger.

    Reply

  2. Many women will take this personally.

    Why this matters, I can see not

    Reply

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