Nina May: Phony feminism has failed women
Op-ed by Nina May
In 1984, after founding the Renaissance Women, to counter the radical feminists who were claiming to speak for all women, we were on the national radar. As a very young, conservative, I was pitted against a veteran feminist, Gloria Steinem, on the “Phil Donahue” show. The issue was whether women should be supporting Geraldine Ferraro for vice president because she was a woman.
I remember the event vividly. Phil teed it up, hit the long ball to the audience and let Gloria and I fight it out. What happened, though, was nothing less than a miracle. As the discussion began with the assumption that all women should vote for Geraldine Ferraro because she is a woman, I asked if Gloria would have that same argument if Phyllis Schlafly was running as VP. She countered with a “straw woman” comment, I said something about feminism being another form of oppression, and the next thing you know, the audience was totally engaged.
I basically sat back while person after person attacked her and the concept of feminism for very personal reasons. I remember a man saying his wife had left him because she bought all the empty promises of “liberation,” and he condemned the movement because it destroys families and lies to women, et cetera, et cetera. There was a definite push back from regular Americans who were impacted by philosophical agendas that serve to pit one segment of society against another whether man vs. woman, black vs. white, red vs. blue, or freedom vs. socialism … which has become the conflict de jour.
The point Gloria tried to make was that by not supporting and voting for Geraldine Ferraro, women were being disloyal to their gender. I suggested that we should not support just any woman who is being elevated to higher positions, but we should choose wisely and according to our own principles and beliefs. The word “choice” was exclusively used for abortion at that time, and to use it in any other context caused great consternation with the left. Also, terms like “individual” and “self-determination” were dismissed by Gloria as being too self-serving, and not socially minded enough. That was code for, “we were not being good comrades by suggesting that the needs of the individual should take priority over the needs of the communal whole.” Oh, but we are liberated to think for ourselves?
As hard as Gloria tried to intimidate us into acquiescence, we didn’t give an inch and refused to accept the martyrdom of genderhood and rejected the idea of just any woman being VP. Her repetitive response was, “It is time we had a woman vice president, or president.” And that was 25 years ago.
Now with Sarah Palin as the VP choice of Republicans, feminists are singing the same tune, but in a different key. NOW … woman are not supposed to vote for her just because she is a woman. It is this type of female behavior that gives all of us a bad name. Please, make up your mind. Are we supposed to support a woman for VP because she is a woman, despite what she believes and what party she belongs to, or are we NOT supposed to support a woman for VP because she is a woman?
This dog won’t hunt any more and women are tired of being classified as a monolithic block of like-minded voters who walk lockstep to the polls and pull, on command, the lever for the woman candidate, no matter what she stands for … how insulting. As insulting as it is now to insinuate that Sarah Palin is more of a man than a woman, and the only thing she has in common with Hillary is a chromosome. They actually are correct in that assessment, and the statement about being more of a man depends on what man you are talking about. She is more like Reagan than Barney Frank, and besides bearing children, she probably doesn’t have a lot in common with Hillary Clinton. I can’t imagine Hillary field dressing a moose, or standing by her man as he comes home after drilling on the north slopes or racing a snow machine.
Gov. Palin has not lived a privileged life, or been handed a governorship because her husband cheated on her and humiliated her before the world. She actually earned her position as governor without having to cling to her husband’s coattails with the tail wind of feminist hypocrisy at her back. Gov. Palin hasn’t been privileged to have a phalanx of reporters obliterating obstacles from Whitewater, to Troopergate to Travelgate, to a failed health-care plan like Hillary had.
Sarah Palin, and millions of courageous women like her, have fought the tide of liberal chauvinism by rejecting their easy ride to irresponsible behavior when these men “champion” a woman’s right to choose. This all while exploited woman and phony feminists stand stupidly on the sideline cheering on this boorish behavior while they alone suffer the consequences. They have never suggested that the men who impregnate women should have to be held responsible for actions that have no consequences. What if a law was passed that said if a man impregnates a woman that ends in abortion he should lose one testicle? If it happens again, he should lose the other one. So mathematically, it would be in a man’s best interest to be more responsible sexually, and if he isn’t, he will understand the devastating lose that is associated with irresponsible sex that results in abortion. Or, we could take the idea of a woman’s right to choose one step further and say she has the right to choose to marry the father of her unborn child. She has the right to choose to hold him accountable for his actions like she will be held accountable in one way or another. Women should be very leery of men waving the “choice” banner for them because for some men it just means it is a license to exploit.
If abortion is the BIG issue that divides the Gloria’s and the Sarah’s of the world, let’s put it on the line. Gloria chose not to have children … Sarah chose to have five, even one with a condition that the Gloria’s of the world condemn as a reason to support abortion on demand. So Gloria and her ilk would have chosen death for little Trig Palin. Sarah chose life. That is what this WHOLE battle of the VP is about … abortion vs. pro-life.
But, if you chose the wrong thing … if you chose life, even for a child with Down Syndrome, you are considered less than a woman, less than worthy to serve in any capacity of leadership, and basically deserve to be politically aborted. You are called everything from a Barbie Doll, to a stewardess to a “fluff bucket” by other women no less. And why? Just because Sarah Palin doesn’t toe the liberal Democrat feminist line, and really thinks that people should be responsible for their actions, she is marginalized and ridiculed. Much like Clarence Thomas was, for being black and conservative. There is a pattern of discrimination that is at the heart of the liberal mindset and their Democrat party that erects virtual plantations around groups of people they have determined can be classified solely on their sex or skin color.
That is the heart of the debate today, and that was the same battle the Democrats and Republicans had 150 years ago over the issue of slavery and the value of a human life based on pigment of skin. Now the battle is over a chromosome.
The bloom was off the feminist rose when they turned a blind eye to the roguish and misogynist behavior of Bill Clinton while convincing themselves that their fellow feminist Hillary could actually have won a Senate seat in New York as a total unknown, had she not been married to her husband the president. They reject reality, they spin their version of the truth, they side with politically correct men who abuse women, against women who care about the sanctity and value of all human life. The feminist movement is a phony, hypocritical reflection of the same juggernaut that elevates state over individual and oppression over liberty.
I switched from the Democrat Party to the Republicans in college after someone defined a Republican as an “N” lover. I said … “Well, I guess I am a Republican then.” If liberals and feminists want to cling to their dogma and hypocrisy, then they shouldn’t be surprised if millions of Americans reject their form of racism and sexism and rebel by voting for their fellow mavericks and join the real civil rights party that was founded to liberate people in real bondage.