Feminism — Coming Full Circle?

26 Jun

One of my favorite writers, Mona Charen, recently wrote a column in which she challenged the goals of feminists, calling them out-of-touch with what most women really want.  This column is entitled “Grow Up: Life Has Its Trade-offs”.  I thought it was an excellent piece, and you can find the whole column at http://www.creators.com/conservative/mona-charen.html   .  Excerpts are below.

 Charen holds a Law Degree from Georgetown University.  She was a speechwriter for First Lady Nancy Reagan and for presidential candidate Jack Kemp.  She is now a political analyst for radio and TV, a columnist, and the author of several books.  Her essays appear regularly in many newspapers.

 Excerpts from the column:    [Bolding is mine; content in brackets [] is also mine.]

 Despite endless repetition by Democrats and feminists, the idea that women earn less than men for the same work is fiction. Single women without children earn just as much, and sometimes more, than comparably qualified young men. Women earn less (over their whole careers) because they choose to. And they choose to because they place more value on child rearing than on money or status.

A better feminism would applaud women for this and stress the incomparable contribution mothers make to society. Instead, feminists define progress as the “first” woman this or that and the degree to which a woman’s life parallels a man’s. Feminists have been missing what’s best about womanhood for decades.

They keep up a relentless drumbeat for “better” (by which they mean government-subsidized) childcare and fret that men don’t have to make the same trade-offs. But as Anne-Marie Slaughter [author of a book that seems to have inspired this column] found, most women don’t want more opportunities to farm out our children. Slaughter wasn’t even satisfied to have her own husband be the principal parent. She wanted the kind of relationship with her sons that only time — and lots of it — can allow.

Most mothers feel that way, and unlike feminists who find this truth to be embarrassingly retro, we freely affirm that we want to be there for the first words, the first independent ride on a two-wheeler, the Little League games, the school plays, the violin lessons, and the thousand little private jokes, shared confidences, and other intimacies that are some of the sweetest parts of life.

We’ve seen some of the women who are described as “having it all.” We see the glamorous careers, the attention and the prizes. And perhaps we feel a twinge or two of envy. But it’s an illusion. Something has to give. Too many exhausted women blame themselves for not being able to be Ruth Bader Ginsberg, June Cleaver and Sally Ride all at the same time. They’ve been lied to about life, mostly by feminists. Slaughter discovered the truth in time. Many don’t.

[End of Excerpts]

Not the way to be popular among the feminists, huh?

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