Wednesday, April 6, 2011

PYLISS SCHAFLY, SUZANNE VENKER AND THE EX-LIST

PART ONE


I would like to qualify my current trend on relationships. First, none of the women who are in my life, current or recent past, have done or said anything that has motivated me to think about relationships and how they are seen in the wider society and how that view reflects in my life. Blame Book TV, Kay Hymowitz and the two women in the header for that.

No, I have not been doing well. I feel a little poorly, and my inactivity in the blogosphere reflects that my struggles. Prior to now, even when I have nothing to write about in my journal, I have been able to find the time to read and leave comments in the blogs that I subscribe to. But I haven’t even been reading journal for however long it has been that I have been hazy, maybe a week or so.

I won’t go into what has been complicating thing for me until I manage to say something to Nebraska. While this is a journal of my thoughts to express the ballast of my life, one of the things that I believe to be a drag co-efficient for me has been the feeling that I have less that a charmed life. Complaining about things when at the end of the day I feel good is a contradiction that I can’t abide in my life. The grief that I have experienced over broken promise, disappointment and loss is something I have always kept to myself… and why ‘keeping problems to yourself kid ‘cause I got my own’, is more than a pithy non-sequitur I use occasionally for effect. It is what I say to myself when it comes to dealing with my problems. Hmm, there was a cadence call, ‘there ain’t no use in lookin’ down now… ain’t no discharge on the ground now’, from basic training in the Army that speaks to my attitude about ‘things’ as well.



…ANYWHO, I WATCH TOO MUCH BOOK TV…



Left to my own devices, my way of ‘escaping’ is not to indulge myself in mindless fantasy. That is another reason I have been a PBS and public radio (since I used to listen to a lot of CBC Radio as well growing up in the Motor) have been mainstays of my weekend recreational activities. I will read a book or watch a show like 'Morgan Freeman’s Through The Wormhole' on Discovery Science, or, watch what is on Book TV!


I don’t know if there is anything behind their airing of Kay Hymowitz and Suzanne Venker talking about their recent books, but I took in a lot more than I left behind. Unlike Hymonwitz, Suzanne Venker with Phyliss Schafly riding shotgun as a co-author, and that is what made her discussion of “The Flipside of Feminism: What Conservative Women Know - and Men Can't Say”, ‘must see TV’ for me. I don’t mind risking offending some with my writing because I am seeking to add to my knowledge base. The purpose of my ‘goal for life’ is not to be narrow but to broaden my vision.


That is another conversation. While I don’t agree with either Venker or Schafly in principle, that is not to say that their arguments are devoid of merit and should force feminist to ask themselves what is their ultimate goal? I do agree with what Schafly said about victimization, as it generally holds water over a broad scope of personal, as well as social issues. I do think that there is a disconnect between what feminism is working towards and what it actually accomplishes.

"Feminisim is a structual analysis of a world that oppresses women. An idealology that patriachy exists and needs to end." – Jessica Valenti


If that is indeed this is the manifesto of the 3rd wave of feminism, I am inclined to agree with it. But it comes with a caveat. Ms. Schafly mocks how some feminists were shocked that after passing their child-bearing years that when they wanted to have a child how difficult, if not impossible that goal was. I do believe it is possible to have your cake and eat it too, but man, to walk a path that narrow takes a lot of moxie. James Franco seems to have the world in his palm. His career and his pursuits are enviable and this is where I think many hostile feminists get their panties wadded up.


Though he does not have a main squeeze publicly, there are certain difference between men living a well-rounded life than from women isn’t simply due to a specific cultural, political or social agenda. Some of it owes itself to an impossible to deny biological imperative. Whether he decides at 35, 45, or even 55, he can. On the flipside, I have spoken to several established professional women who if not past those prime years to be a mother, for whom they are quickly approaching. I think that this is what plays a part of the anger in the ‘femme’ feminists, who went to the right schools and worked their way up the corporate ladder (or whatever ladder they chose to climb) and find that after all their accomplishments and perceived success, now that they would like to be a Mother, they can’t. I think that is why feminists seem to blame the hierarchy for something that is beyond anyone’s control.

And you know what else I think that biology has done to the Carrie Bradshaw’s of the world? The social environment that spawned the ‘New Girl Order’ also had the unintended consequence of 'Lost Boys Syndrome' of men, as I think ‘Manning Up’ may hint at. Sure, girls can do a lot of things that boys can, even to the point where they do them better. But there is one thing that they can’t make men do, and that is participate in self-eradicating relationships. When I visit here for my next entry, I will pick up from here, talking about how different it is for men to step off the merry-go-round of love and relationship, and why there has to be ‘motivation’ for men now that we have been relieved of the biological imperative to procreate.

9 comments:

LceeL said...

You know, one of the things I really like about you is that when I make a comment on your blog, I am required - REQUIRED - to think. I can't just throw something out there, off the cuff, superficial. Not that my comments on other blogs are actually 'superficial' - but few of those other blogs require the depth of self examination that yours does.

FYI

Toon said...

I wish NPR would revitalize their weekend programming. It's gotten awfully stale.

Jonthy, Alice the uppity white cat's babysitter said...

Maybe it's because I grew up with four brothers, but I never felt a biological imperative to procreate. In fact I think I felt a biological imperative not to procreate. The fictional Carrie Bradshaws of the world are sometimes fun to watch but I could never really get into "Sex in the City" unless Carrie was about to commit to love rather than upward mobility or $800 pair of shoes. Do these kind of women really exist?

Lovebabz said...

I love Carrie Bradshaw. Just as I love Claire Huxtable, just as I love Carmen Jones. I love that women have the power to be whomever they want and Bravo to the men who find themselves enamored of them...of me. $800 shoes aren't the issue...hell to someone with no shoes spending $10 is outrageous. Procreation imperative? what is that? Are women designed to have babies YES! Are women wired for babies...some are...some are not. I have 4 children. I adopted them all. I came to mommyhood late LATE I say! I am almost 50 and have kids under 10! UUgghh! but that's my deal.

Love is a many splendid thing. You can make the case for NOT BEING LOVE all day. But honestly being in someone's universe is dynamic. I can't imagine my life without being in love...deeply.

Turn off NPR and go out on a few dates! :)

Thomas said...

I've enjoyed being an uncle. That's enough for me.

Jonthy, Alice the uppity white cat's babysitter said...

Amen Lovebabz!
A woman full of wisdom!!

Malagutigrrl said...

I used to watch Book TV all the time when we HAD TV. We had it shut off in order to get unlimited internet. I believe I can still watch it on the CSPAN website but haven't made it over there yet. With all of this unlimited internet going on, it's so easy to get distracted along the way!

As for the procreation... I love kids (would have had a half dozen of them if I could afforded to) but don't have any. AND I just turned 49. I'm still in good enough shape to care for a baby and small child but don't want to be in my sixties dealing with a TEENAGER. And then there's the simple problem of barely being barely able to afford to keep myself alive, let alone being financially responsible for someone else for the next 20 years (ohhh don't event want to THINK about what college would cost then).

Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

Hope things start to look up with the coming of spring. Hope you can start getting outside more with the nicer weather.

Have Myelin? said...

Wow, I'm glad I didn't make my life complicated with the man/woman thing. I stayed home with my kids until the youngest was in second grade. All my friends were going off to work but I elected to remain at home with my kids. I canned tomatoes, made jelly, had a garden and life was simple I thought.

I considered myself an equal the father of my kids but we didn't make it for other reasons.

Men and women are different, thank goodness.

Like LceeL said, you make people think.

I can't listen to NPR since I'm deaf. =p

I'd rather watch Carrie Bradshaw on tv than be friends with her.