By Sadie Rothman
Welcome to Part 2 of my series entitled, “Hold on a Second, a WOMAN Wrote This!?” (For Part 1, “The War on the War on Men,” click here).
Today’s installment focuses on a piece in American Thinker, “New York Times Declare Victory in Feminism’s War on Love and Romance,” by conservative Pamela Geller. Here’s an excerpt:
The New York Times, the cultural beacon for the left’s war on American values, has declared that the “date” is dead.
Dinner at a romantic new bistro? Forget it. Women in their 20s these days are lucky to get a last-minute text to tag along………”I don’t like to take girls out. I like to have them join in on what I’m doing – going to an event, a concert.”
What did they expect? Why should men date? Why would they make any effort at all? The feminists turned all women into unpaid whores because it’s so, ya know, cool and liberating. Yeah, being a piece of meat is fabtastic.
I am so glad I am not a young woman in America in 2013. If you are not a slut, any real social life is tough. Men expect serious and strange sex immediately. If you are one of the few, brave women who believe that sex without love is a meaningless, soul-robbing experience, you are mighty lonely.
And I do not blame men. Men’s behavior is a merely a reflection of society’s expectations and the culture. Men are what women demand that they be. And today there are no expectations.
Feminism’s war on love and romance? As a feminist, I sure wish someone had let me know we were in the midst of such a war; otherwise, I wouldn’t have gone on all those dates!
All kidding aside, Geller’s piece of writing is insulting to women, men, young people and anyone who used to be a young person. Geller writes, “I am so glad I am not a young woman in America in 2013. If you are not a slut, any real social life is tough.” Check out that sweeping and offensive declaration. The only question is, does she mean that all sluts are popular, or that all popular girls are sluts? Never mind how appalling it is that this woman just used the term “slut” in reference to an entire generation of females.
She goes on to say, “Men expect serious and strange sex immediately. If you are one of the few, brave women who believe that sex without love is a meaningless, soul-robbing experience, you are mighty lonely.” Allow me to point out that, according to this passage, men are only interested in kinky, emotionless sexual relations, and all women are silently accepting their sad fate of never finding love. This is to say that men are never interested in emotionally invested sex with a woman they love, and women never want to experience casual sexual encounters of any sort. But we all know that none of that is true. Right? Right, everyone? And while we’re focusing on this particular excerpt, we’d be remiss not to mention how absurdly hetero-normative it is, but let’s leave it at that, because that’s a whole other article.
Of feminists, Geller writes, “Those men-hating parasites have ruined the glorious exaltation of women in 20th-century America.” Again, there are so many offensive messages in this single sentence. First of all, feminism is not about hating men, that assertion is the most misguided and ignorant misconception Geller could have referenced. Secondly, as a woman, I really do not need to be exalted, especially not if I am only being exalted because I am a woman, because that’s also not what feminism is about. I don’t want to be treated extra-terribly or extra-nicely simply because I am female. I want to be treated equally and respectfully – not like a “slut” or a goddess, but like a human being.
Aside from the blatant, derisive, and downright rude message of this article, the thing that really irks me about this piece is that, once again, a writer is using Lena Dunham’s now award-winning show Girls to serve as the definition for an entire generation of young women. Whether they’re doing so positively or negatively, everyone needs to stop talking about Girls as if it’s representative of every 15-35 year old female in the United States. In an interview with NPR, Lena Dunham herself said that “I really wrote the show from a gut-level place, and each character was a piece of me or based on someone close to me.” She doesn’t claim to have written a show called All Girls. Just Some Girls—specifically, herself and her personal experiences as a girl. That’s why some girls can relate to it, some love the show, some don’t particularly care for it, and men have positive and negative views on it as well.
People are different, like different things, want different experiences, sexual and otherwise. Many young women I know are happily single, others are in committed relationships or married, and some are dating several people at once. Any one of these scenarios – among others – is absolutely all right so long as there is communication, agreement and respect. Dating and romance have not been “conquered” and they are not extinct (and such a thing is in no way a goal of the feminist movement). People still go on dates, people have casual sex, people commit to serious, monogamous relationships, and all of this, and more, is okay.
Sadie Rothman is the field coordinator for the American Humanist Association.