Monday, February 11, 2008

For "Feminists" Only Well Behaved Women Make History

Bridget Johnson at Pajama's Media has an interesting column on Golda Meir and today's brand of female leadership:

As I watched the life of the former prime minister unfold onscreen, I chuckled at the thought of how our 2008 obsession with identity politics seems to forget the great leaders — who just happened to be women — who have long had the attention of the rest of the world. After all, Oprah is not the most powerful woman in the world; that woman is, as ranked by Forbes, German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But Merkel is a conservative. Meir fought for Israel’s survival in the Yom Kippur War. Even Condoleezza Rice’s term as secretary of state has not been hailed as a great advance for women and/or African-Americans. So is a leader who happens to be a women only hailed as advancement if she pursues a feminist agenda outlined by NOW or the Code Pink sisters?

It would seem that the answer to that question is a resounding "yes."


Blogger TMink said...

I think the answer is "Yes."

Liberals require ideological purity. Conservatives think it is no big deal that these strong leaders are women. Since it is no big deal to us, we don't talk about it much. Since the liberals require ideological purity, they don't talk about it at all.


3:42 PM, February 11, 2008  
Blogger DADvocate said...

Trey pretty much hit the nail on the head. It's not about equal opportunity, etc. It's about pushing the liberal ideology. Just look at the way liberals respond to conservative blacks and females.

4:46 PM, February 11, 2008  
Blogger LZ said...

Or compare liberal Republican Bob Packwood with liberal Democrat Ted Kennedy or Bill Clinton.

The ironic thing is that because conservatives choose their leaders on principle, they are more likely to impact history and be remembered.

4:53 PM, February 11, 2008  
Blogger Unknown said...

Successful conservative women, by their very existence, make women in general look wise but Pinkers et al look foolish.

Priorities, people, priorities.

5:39 PM, February 11, 2008  
Blogger David Foster said...

The "well-behaved women" meme is worth some discussion. Consider someone who really *did* make history: Admiral Grace Hopper, an early pioneer of the computer revolution. Was RADM Hopper a well-behaved woman?

She was clearly opinionated and iconoclastic, and made great contributions in one male-dominated industry (computers) while pursuing a career in another (the U.S. Navy) at a time when women were typically not expected to do such things. So there were probably people who knew her who considered her not well-behaved.

But she was able to achieve high rank in an institution that has very strong standards on behavior, and to make contributions in a field requiring great mental discipline.

So maybe the key is to be well-behaved and not well-behaved at the same time.

6:41 PM, February 11, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Greatness doesn't have to be connected to politics.

My mom was the greatest woman who ever lived. My dad, the greatest man.

7:05 PM, February 11, 2008  
Blogger Mike said...

Or perhaps in the case of RADM Hopper, she proves that you have to be civil in your presentation of the right ideas. Anyone who has worked around a lot of the women who think they're so bad-ass they'll show the boys a thing or two as they start their Computer Science or Engineering degree knows what I am talking about. Most of them cannot deal with the fact that they are substituting bitchiness for education and insight.

My wife was heads and shoulders above the other women who graduated with us, and has a generally contemptuous attitude toward women in IT. She's an actual engineer in the field, none of the girls who graduated with her could be called a software engineer with a straight face.

By and large, the women who make the big differences where they work, are the ones who can act like decent human beings while making their cases. This is too hard for most women because they tend to take disagreement personally, no matter what it is. It's no wonder then why there are so few women like RADM Hopper in these fields. It doesn't take too long for a group of engineers or researchers to realize that a woman who behaves very badly is not worth dealing with, even if she sometimes does have brilliant ideas.

9:30 PM, February 11, 2008  
Blogger SGT Ted said...

The well bahaved woman meme is feminist mythology. It is used as an excuse to act like an immature, rude, spoiled brat instead of being civil and decent. It also gives such women a pass to be verbally abusive, which they would never condone in a man.

The typical counter-arguement feministas use; "Well, if a man acts like a bitch, he is called assertive" is another steaming pile. No, the man who acts like a bitch is often referred to as an "asshole" or other scatalogical reference, regardless of job performance.

If women act business-like, they will get more respect.

11:20 AM, February 12, 2008  
Blogger Earnest Iconoclast said...

There are still double-standards, though, and women do not get equal treatment. The differences aren't as great as the rabid feminists claim and they don't excuse misbehavior.

While I often agree with the sentiments expressed in these blog comments, there seems to be an underlying misogyny in addition to the reasonable indignation at the way men are sometimes treated.

While men get the short end of the stick in some ways, women do in others.

Having said all that, Liberals tend to prefer that people act in accordance to their Identity... blacks should act black, women should be womyn, etc... It's a pretty racist/sexist attitude.

1:04 PM, February 12, 2008  
Blogger TMink said...

One thing I am noting lately in my practice is how offended some mom's get when their child's father gets primary custody of the child. They get injured, insulted, and quite vindictive. Many of them then make or coach their child to make slanderous and harmful false sexual abuse charges. It is a real mess.

They bring the kids in to see me expecting me to rubber stamp their position and I listen to the children to see what is going on.

They usually fire me pretty quick because they are not looking for an advocate for their children, they are looking for ammunition.

I am calling them mothers scorned.

Helen should write an article about them.


2:17 PM, February 12, 2008  
Blogger Helen said...


That is awful, but one reason it is hard to do forensic work--which child custody falls under--is that people (often both parents!) are looking for an advocate for their side and don't understand that you are not their therapist and are an independent evalutator. However, coaching a child to make false sexual abuse charges is so sadistic and sick that one wonders if the mothers in these cases care more about winning than they do about their kids. Thanks for being so objective--it is the right thing to do.

3:48 PM, February 12, 2008  
Blogger dtuff said...

I'd like to know how many Americans can name more then one European leader never mind what their sex is.

10:39 PM, February 12, 2008  
Blogger David Foster said...

I wonder why "dtuff" focuses on European leaders--as opposed to, say, Asian leaders or Latin American leaders--for its irrelevant comment.

10:14 AM, February 13, 2008  
Blogger SGT Ted said...

becuase knowing that Sarkoski leads France, Merckle Leads Germany etc is supposed to confer some sort of sophistication amongst the superficial left. I'd rather they understand the threat of Radical Islam and that appeasement and diplomacy don't deter tyrants.

11:12 AM, February 13, 2008  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know about some famous European leaders: Cromwell, Robespierre, George III, Napoleon I, Napoleon III, Wilhelm I, Mussolini, Franco, Quisling, Pavelic, Antonescu, Petain, Hitler, Ceaucescu, Milosevic... Did I miss any?

4:59 PM, February 13, 2008  
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