Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day, ladies -- and how about ditching the 'patriarchy' yammer?

Let politicized fanatics get their hands on a holiday that has long been synonymous with love and romance between men and women, and before anyone knew what was happening, they managed to turn it into a celebration of just women, and worse, as a day to malign and spew hatred for approximately one-half the population of planet earth as potential rapists and batterers.

You know the drill: "As Valentine's Day approaches one of the unique traditions that isn't Hallmark cards or candlelight dinners, is the production of Eve Ensler's 'The Vagina Monologues,' which is a play that is actually a miscellany of speeches focused on female empowerment."  Proceeds for this play, which, in its original production idealized child molestation when practiced by adult women, generally go to support women's "anti-violence" groups.

As Wendy McElroy put it: "Rather than taking 24 hours to celebrate romantic love, women are admonished to ponder rape and domestic violence."

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is a politics bordering on pathology. 

Here's what Ms. McElroy said about the "Vagina Monologues": "A play that claims to unveil the truth about vaginas but, somehow, overlooks the salutary role men play in most women's sexuality has no credibility. Worse than this, 'The Vagina Monologues' equates men with 'the enemy' and heterosexual love with violence.

"Betty Dodson — a leader of '60s liberal feminism whose life's work has aimed at demystifying women's sexuality — expressed well-deserved horror at the play. Describing Ensler as 'an evangelical minister,' Dodson believes that the play is a blast of hatred at men and heterosexuality. After all, the 24-year-old woman who seduces the drunken 13-year-old is portrayed as 'rescuing' her from male violence.

"'Take Back the Night' is a rallying cry that PC feminism raises against male violence. Perhaps the rallying call for Feb. 14 should be 'Take Back the Day' — Valentine's Day — a cry that women who love the men in their lives should take up."

Most women don't buy into the blatant man-hating at the core of most V-Day celebrations, but far too many are parties to a more subtle kind of misandry: they have alienated men from the means of reproduction.

Prof. Lionel Tiger, Rutgers professor of anthropology, has a Valentine's Day piece in the Wall Street Journal in which he writes the following: "The biological bottom line is that it is the woman's responsibility to secure an acceptable long-term partner. Her stakes could not be higher. . . . And while marriage is by no means a romantic walk on the beach, it gets children raised and life goes on. Then why the astonishing fact that 40% of babies born in the industrial world are to unmarried women?"

His answer is all too obvious: ". . . the likelier explanation is that 40% of women do not think the candidates available to them are worth the time and trouble. The ever-increasing disparity between females and males in terms of education and achievement has curtailed the available choices for affluent, well- educated females.

"Our system increasingly favors females. In countless American colleges, the first day of classes involves a rape seminar—largely to please the lawyers, no doubt—which stigmatizes men as potential predators and women as victims. The back of every women's bathroom door at Colby College provides a list of things to do surrounding rape; first-year females at Brown are given a whistle to use when rape threatens."

What's Tiger's solution? "Women can control their reproductive lives, which is as it should be. But to coin a phrase, men are becoming alienated from the means of reproduction, which presumably no one wants.  Is there anything to be done to reverse this trend? A good first step is for women to ease up on the patriarchy yammer, especially when it comes to romance: Ideology has no place in the nation's bedrooms."

How about this instead: ditch the patriarchy yammer altogether. It has no place in either civil or intelligence discourse. Period.

Happy Valentines Day.