Saturday, June 01, 2013

Louise Mensch: How About Some Reality-Based Feminism?

Right on, person-friend...:

At this point, I had drifted off into Monty Python's Life of Brian, where Stan and Judith are debating whether they should stick up for Stan's "right to have babies" even though he can't have babies.
And that is what the modern feminist movement has become. Full of intersectionality, debates about middle-class privilege, hand-wringing over a good education (this is again "privilege" and not well-deserved success), and otherwise intelligent women backing out of debates and sitting around frenziedly checking their privilege.
It does nothing. It accomplishes nothing. It changes nothing.
Ultra-feminism's mournful obsession with words and categories is making the movement a joke
The academic and internet feminist equivalent of the vanguard of the proletariat is turning feminism into a joke. It's not just that it doesn't accomplish anything, it's that it's also intellectually indefensible.

The nuts-and-bolts of liberal feminism has always involved working for political equality between the sexes, working for equal rights for women and seeking to combat sexism (real sexism, in the sense of prejudice by anyone based on sex; not the made-up neologistic version according to which women can't be sexist). The academic/internet vanguard has moved away from this, toward spinning out ever-more-implausible theoretical orthodoxies to berate people for not accepting. Liberals, sadly, are hesitant to criticize them, largely because they're afraid to be called sexist. Since the only criticism tends to come from the right and MRAs, the vanguard becomes convinced of its infallibility.

Look, every movement has its kooks. But feminism seems unwilling to take on its extremists and loons. And it's that unwillingness that, more than anything else, ultimately drove me away from the movement so-described. Yes, feminism is a big tent...but that's all the more reason to think that some of the people in the tent are maybe--just maybe--not entirely right about everything.


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