"Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government." Thomas Jefferson

Julia's War on Feminism

Melanie Sturm | @ThinkAgainUSA Read Comments - 6
Publish Date: 
Thu, 05/24/2012



When Gloria Steinem popularized the saying “a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle”, I wasn’t old enough to wear a bra, never mind burn it. However, thanks to that feminist credo and its infiltration of 1970s popular culture, women of my generation grew up believing we could make it on our own, like Mary Tyler Moore.  While her theme song cautioned, “this world is awfully big, girl,” our confidence rose with Mary’s cap, tossed triumphantly to “you’re going to make it after all.”


Indeed, we did make it, though presidential campaign operatives peddling the “War on Women” narrative want you to Think Again. They insist it’s a war on women when it’s actually a war for women’s votes.  This month’s political ad, “The Life of Julia,” occasions the question: which voter are they after, Georgia in Greece or Mary in Minneapolis?


Julia is a single, faceless cartoon – evidently an American everywoman – who depends on European-like, cradle-to-grave government assistance from pre-school through retirement. As if being tethered to a dependency-inducing nanny-state were attractive to American women  (or plausible given mounting debt) Julia, like her entitled European cousin, is the anti-Mary -- she can’t make it on her own.


Sadly, this government-centered and soul-deadening narrative is as false and harmful to women as the notion that we should be barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. Both beget a toxic cocktail of subservience, loss of identity and worthlessness -- the antithesis of feminism.  Franklin Roosevelt cautioned that dependence “induces a spiritual and moral disintegration fundamentally destructive to the national fiber”…and “the human spirit.”  


The antidote to “learned helplessness” and its corollary unhappiness is “earned success”, according to economist Arthur Brooks, President of American Enterprise Institute and happiness authority. In his new book “The Road to Freedom,” Brooks explains, “people crave earned success, which comes from achievement, not a check. It’s the freedom to be an individual and to delineate your life’s ‘profit’”…whether measured in money, “making beautiful art, saving people’s souls, or pulling kids out of poverty.”


Earned success is what our Founders meant by “the pursuit of happiness” which is America’s “moral promise” to its citizens. Brooks praises the Founders’ visionary insight because “allowing us to earn our success is precisely what gives each of us the best chance at achieving real happiness,” and his data proves it. 


Feminists understood earned success knowing self-reliance and freedom would yield more choices, achievement, self-respect and fulfillment if women had a level playing field. Now, four decades since Helen Reddy sang “I am Woman,” women are “The Richer Sex” -- the book by Liza Mundy documenting women’s economic advancement.  The New York Times book review noted: women hold 51 percent of management and professional jobs; wives at least co-earn in two-thirds of marriages; and women earn 57 percent of bachelor’s degrees and comprise 60 percent of graduate students.

Meanwhile, according to a March National Journal poll, three-quarters of women believe they can advance as far as their talents take them. Not surprisingly, women account for seven of the top 10 spots on Forbes 2012 World’s Most Powerful Celebrities list including the top two, Jennifer Lopez and Oprah Winfrey.

Despite these spectacular achievements, economic stagnation makes otherwise self-sufficient women – especially single ones -- insecure and uncertain. Preying on this anxiety, ambitious politicians cast themselves as compassionate by promising a lifetime of government benefits to a nation of Julia’s. Considering the tortuous unraveling of the Eurozone, this idea is both fantasy and dangerous. 


In Europe, hopelessly large social security and entitlement promises exceed governments’ ability to tax and borrow, crushing those who believed economic security is a basic human right. Yet, as European leaders grapple with resentments caused by austerity measures, American politicians make the same promises that precipitated Europe’s crisis. 


Brooks would argue that even Julia knows it’s wrong to make promises you don’t intend to keep.  He warns, “Americans today are experiencing a low-grade, virtual servitude to an ever-expanding, unaccountable government that…. has created a protected class of government workers and crony corporations that play by a different set of rules … and has consequently left the nation in hock for generations to come.”


Thankfully, American women are watching and willing to act. According to a Rasmussen poll released this week, nearly two-thirds of women (and men) prefer a government with fewer services and lower taxes. So rather than foster dependency, why not encourage the fiercely independent and self-reliant ethic that originally motivated feminists and propelled women’s economic advancement? 


The real war on women is the one waged by those whose policies undermine our economy thus limiting everyone’s choices, mobility and independence.  As for Julia, she’d be better served by policies that empower her as an individual, not ones that encourage reliance on government.


Think Again, Julia – you can “make it on your own.”


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Pfft, I've learned my lesson

Pfft, I've learned my lesson from Julia, Obama's composite feminist:

Women are nothing more than subservient, monolithic, walking bajingos (finally, a useful Scrubs reference) who exist for the sole purpose of pleasuring men at every turn, need an infinite supply of free birth control so they can pleasure said men, and are incapable of supporting themselves without an all-powerful daddy figure taking care of their every breath and decision.

In short, women are pretty much how rap videos portray them minus the halter tops and booty shorts. And dammit, those halter tops and booty shorts are important.

EDIT: Since I know someone is going to take my comment seriously, even though it has the word "bajingos" in it, the above is sarcasm.

Once again you hit the nail

Once again you hit the nail on the head...excellent piece.

If the insurance mandate of

If the insurance mandate of Obamacare is upheld by the
Supreme Court it will, in effect, say that we, the citizens of the US,
are to be dependent on the government. This mandate will unleash a
torrent of additional requirements imposed by liberals in congress that will
reduce and eliminate our freedom. We would become, just like the slaves,
beholden to the government for our very existence.

The Obama administration, by releasing their plan for Julia,
show how they plan to accomplish this. They want to make every citizen
dependant on government, for everything.

Our country's future is at stake.

Actually more and more women

Actually more and more women are having to make it on their own since many men now refuse to get married due to the abusive divorce courts that take all their assets when a marriage breaks up.

I think your writing gets

I think your writing gets better and better.  What made me a little uneasy about this article was I agree wholeheartedly with the overall sentiment, but I am not sure which policy options you are recommending and don't know if I would necessarily agree with those.  I think some examples would be helpful.

Feminists understood earned

Feminists understood earned success, knowing self-reliance and freedom would yield more choices, achievement, self-respect and fulfillment if women had a level playing field.

Every one of these clauses is inaccurate. Feminists believed none of these things, and only used words like "self-reliance" and "freedom" in dishonest or deluded ways. The feminists who helped to create the current state of our society were Marxists from broken families who hated their mothers and fathers both. They hated America, and said so. They had a magical idea of where resources come from. You have to, to believe, with this dotty author, that the government can level a playing field. All a government can do with a market is prey upon it for political gain. What feminist personalities refused to face—and still do—was that freedom is not easy. To them, freedom means getting your way, no matter what rules you have to bend to get it.

A feminist cartoon character who is entirely dependent on government is inescapably logical. Feminism was born in dependence on the state. The motive was always to use government to force those around the feminist to support her without her having to do what she is personally incapable of doing: get along with others. All voluntary associations quickly were revealed to be the enemy of the feminist, including the men who had no desire for her company, businesses that had no use for her labor—and especially, the other, less troubled women who found husbands and raised children, and who, if they succeeded in commerce, did so by pleasing customers.

Nevertheless, I'm with you in hoping that the unauthorized, "deviationist" sentiments of this woman spread and sow division to some small degree among the Democratic masses.

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