There’s absolutely nothing, nothing as relaxing for me than to curl up with a cup of tea and a really good classic movie.
One of my favorites came on the other day: Giant. It’s a film about Texas cattle man Bick Benedict (Rock Hudson) who meets and marries a girl back East (Elizabeth Taylor), and brings her home to live at Reata, his family ranch.
Watching this one is a hefty trek—it’s three and a half hours long and deals with tough themes like culture shock, racism, interracial marriages, sexism, politics, war and changing times. I thought about it this week as women across the country stayed home from work in protest on Wednesday’s “Day Without A Woman.” I particularly recalled one of Leslie Benedict’s famous spats with her husband, Bick:
Leslie wants to join the men in their conversation one evening after dinner. “We're just talking business. Just business,” Bick tells her. “You'd be bored, honey; this is dull.”
“Why, l'd be fascinated,” Leslie presses.
“We're talking about politics,” Bick says, gritting his teeth a little this time—as if to give her a warning.
Leslie isn’t fazed: “You married me in Washington, remember, darling? I lived next door to politics. Brought up with it. Please go on talking. l'd love it.”
Then Bick does it: “This is men's stuff.”
That did it.
“Men's stuff! Lord have mercy! Set up my spinning wheel, girls,” Leslie calls over to the other wives,”l'll join the harem section in a minute.”
“lf l may say so before retiring” Leslie continues, “you gentlemen date back a thousand years. You ought to be wearing leopard skins and carrying clubs. Politics! Business! What's so masculine about a conversation that a woman can't enter into it?”
Bick’s really mad now. “You’re tired, Leslie,” he says, indicating she ought to go on up to bed.
“That’s right. Send the children on up to bed so the grownups can talk,” she snaps back.
Yes, we really did have serious problems with sexism in this country, even long after suffragettes won the right for women to vote. Giant illustrates that supremely. (And don’t worry, the movie ends well.) I bring that scene up now because I’ve got something to say to my fellow females out there:
Knock it off. Seriously.
If aliens landed right now and saw only the #DayWithoutAWoman feminists, they’d no doubt think we were all variations of Leslie Benedict and her friends—being told by our husbands to butt out. Modern day feminism has evolved from the reality that spurred on Leslie Benedict’s justified outrage, to a manufactured reality based on a heck of a lot of lies.
And I’m not going to sit here and let my daughter and the rest of America’s next generation of women grow up believing these lies. Yes, we had a very real, widespread sexism problem once. Most of the world did. But that’s simply not the reality in today’s America, and it’s time we deal in reality, ladies.
Let’s get at it.
Lie #1: We’re second class citizens because we’re women.
Within this mindset, we find the so-called wage gap, the fact that we tend to do more at home, the fact that there are fewer women than men in the technology industry… and so on. It paints a grim little picture of our role in society. We do all the work, we have less-than-amazing jobs, and to top it all off, we get paid less for doing it all.
I’m going to boil this down to one simple word that my friends on the left ought to recognize: choice.
The path you take in college and the career you choose is a choice. Having a baby is a choice. Which parent stays home with that baby (and for how long) is a choice. Asking for a raise is a choice. And given that women are choosing lower-paying college majors that parlay into lower paying jobs, choosing to forgo management tracks for other priorities, choosing (in growing numbers, I might add) to stay home with children instead of getting ahead in the workplace, choosing to stay quiet instead of pressing for a raise … hello, wage gap.
And it’s got precious little to do with our lady parts.
Lie #2: Certain products cost more simply because we’re women.
First of all, as I alluded to in a previous piece, there isn’t a “special” tax for things like tampons just because they’re tampons and just because we’re women.
Beyond tampons, there’s outrage over a perceived “pink tax” on products marketed exclusively to women, given that they tend to cost more. I love this line from Forbes’ Tim Worstall: “…there's a very simple answer to it all as well. Retailers charge women more because they can. This is just an outcome of product differentiation in a market economy and is not some evil ploy by retailers; rather it is a response by retailers to female preferences. It is that women will pay those higher prices which drives the actions.”
In other words, women buy the stuff regardless of price. So manufacturers keep pricing it that way.
There it is again: choice. If the products are identical, why are we buying the more expensive version? Who is forcing us to buy the pink razor and not the blue one? We are, my friends. We are.
Lie #3: There aren’t as many females in leadership simply because we’re women.
Please see Lies 1 and 2. Choice ladies, choice. It’s a bit hard to see more females in corporate and political spheres if we’re routinely not choosing those career paths. Stop blaming the patriarchy and make your own choices.
Lie #4: Women get abused (and more often) simply because we’re women.
First, women get abused because there’s evil in the world. Period. And guess what? That evil affects boys and men at a pretty decent clip, too. Women just tend to be more vocal about it. As I also noted in a previous piece, boys make up half of those who are sexually exploited commercially in the United States. Further, in the United States, “a man is the victim of domestic abuse every 37.8 seconds,” and “in 71 percent of nonreciprocal [meaning, where violence is inflicted by only one side] partner violence instances, the instigator was the woman.”
And here’s a big one: there are more men who are sexually attacked in the military than women. There are nearly 11,000 men on average who are sexually assaulted every year, as compared to an average of 8,000 women. So what gives? In one study, “only 1,134 men reported attacks -- roughly 13 percent of those attacked. With women, 39 percent reported attacks.”
Lie #5: We have a right to murder someone else simply because we’re women.
Abortion is a cornerstone of feminism and female rights. So much so, that when a group of pro-life feminists wanted to participate in the Women’s March following Donald Trump’s inauguration, they were flatly denied. Not only does abortion roundly deny settled science, but it roundly denies the original feminist movement. From Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell (the first woman to earn a medical degree) to Victoria Woodhull (the first woman to declare her candidacy for president, and one of the first female stockbrokers), to many other prominent suffragettes, these ladies loudly renounced the practice. As you’ll note, these women were hardly backwater prudes. They were cutting edge—and were still able to see that murder is murder is murder.
Here’s a bonus lie: We have an inherent right to things simply because we’re women.
Leadership positions. Better pay. Better jobs. Better benefits. Better whatever. How often did we hear variations of this line: “… don’t you someday want to see a woman president?” (That was Hillary Clinton.) Well sure, but not just because you’ve got lady bits. Ironically, today’s feminist movement puts more focus on your sexual organs than on your smarts. Big deal that someone’s the first female president. How about striving to be the most successful president? The most revered, honored and respected president? Legends like Margaret Thatcher weren’t successful because she just so happened to be the first female on the job. She was wildly successfully because she was crazy smart.
By insisting that females deserve certain things/recognition/advancement on the basis of their gender, we by default demote the other gender. Sadly it’s not just an unintended consequence of this thought process: modern day feminists actively demean men. From The Huffington Post’s Amee Misra: “Frankly, if we really want to be like men, we should never leave our parents’ homes, do the bare minimum, pat ourselves on the back for every little success, blame others for any failure, and just get a beer.”
As always, there’s much more to this than the bumper sticker, talking point, 140 character diatribes. Young ladies of America, take heed: think with your own mind.
You’ll be a lot better off.
Mary Ramirez is a full-time writer, creator of www.afuturefree.com (a political commentary blog), and contributor to The Chris Salcedo Show (TheBlaze Radio Network, M-F, 3-5. ET). She can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter via @AFutureFree.