But... Muh Patriarchy! | HBR Talk 68

Feminists would like you to believe they’re all strong, independent women who don’t need men. Gloria Steinem famously summed up the public face of that attitude by saying “A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.” The message is clear - Men shouldn’t expect any gratitude or civility from feminists, because feminists consider them to be extraneous… maybe redundant. 

And that is why feminists spend so much time telling nonfeminist women all of the things they think we wouldn’t have if they hadn’t fought for them. They demonize men as oppressors by attributing everything objectionable in society to “Patriarchy,” the feminist word for “a system wherein positions of administrative responsibility are filled mostly or entirely by men.”

They describe this system as one in which men have power and women are largely excluded from it. We’re told that before feminism, women had no power, because women couldn’t vote, couldn’t hold political office, and couldn’t have control of business enterprises or finances, including their own. None of that is true, but let’s entertain those claims for a moment.

In a system in which, through placement in positions of administrative responsibility, men have power, and through absence from those positions, women are largely excluded from it… how could women’s political agitation be responsible for any change in women’s situation? Who did the movement turn to in order to achieve the social evolution for which feminists take credit?

Why, that would be the so-called Patriarchy, dear.

Oh, my. 

From the days of the suffragettes, whose activism was funded by women spending their husbands’ income on suffragette merchandise, who appealed to male legislators to change the law to include women in the franchise, who were able to apply significant social pressure on those legislators, feminists have relied on the very system they now claim to oppose.

Even before women had the vote, they were appealing to that so-called Patriarchy for social and legal changes. American feminists brag about their role in bringing about the 19th amendment, but rarely if ever take credit for women’s role in bringing about the 18th amendment, ratified on January 29, 1919. This ushered in the era of alcohol prohibition, during which the manufacture, transportation and sale of intoxicating liquors - previously a norm in American life - was illegal. 

Even before that, women’s activism produced effective results with the so-called patriarchy. Dorthea Dix began campaigning for prison and mental hospital reform in 1841. Her activism changed the manner in which mentally ill women were housed, led to improved conditions in mental hospitals, and brought women into the role of medical service in the military during the civil war. She never got involved with the feminist movement, but her activism was mainly on behalf of women, and modern feminists cite her as an example of an early feminist activist.

The tender years doctrine, the standard by which custody assignment in divorce cases is informed in legal systems that are based on English Common Law, came about as a result of the activism of UK feminist Caroline Norton. Her activism was a result of the same parental alienation that is visited upon many a father today by many a resentful or even simply inconsiderate ex-wife. Women have no difficulty recognizing that denial of family relationships is abuse when it is done to them. Norton wrote the bill which would become The Custody of Infants Act of 1839, followed by her “plain” letter to the Lord Chancellor regarding the bill, in an effort to ensure that it would be adopted. This was a direct appeal to men in political power - the backbone of feminism’s supposed patriarchy - to legally deem mothers more important than fathers to their young children’s development, health, and welfare.

One might argue that of course before suffrage, women had only the patriarchy to appeal to in order to achieve any form of social or legal change, and feminists might try to claim their activism changed that, but they’d be wrong. 

Even modern feminists do not accomplish anything that cannot be attributed to funding from or appeals to their movement’s boogeyman. Second wave feminists lobbied governing bodies and corporate interests, the very seats of administrative responsibility they cite in their description of what patriarchy means, for changes in law and policy on the basis of feminist interests. We’ve gone over some of those changes in the past, including intimate partner and sexual violence laws that infringe on men’s due process rights for women’s purported benefit, and the mess that is Title IX of the education amendments of 1972. 

It was also during the 70s that feminists began directly lobbying congress to change the federal government’s approach to domestic violence. During  hearings before the House subcommittee on select education, representatives from numerous women’s organizations gave testimony promoting feminist theories on prevalence and gender dynamics of family violence, striving to convince legislators to gender the law. At first it didn’t work, resulting eventually in the gender-neutral family violence prevention and services act of 1984, but continued agitation by feminists convinced congress in the 90s to make more changes, resulting in the violence against women act of 1994.

Last week we went over the feminist advocacy research scam, in which these ideologues use a house-of-cards system to disguise propaganda drawn from academic fraud and deliberately biased research as factual information on which legislative and policy standards should be based. The question is, how have they been able to achieve that scam when academic endeavors require funding? How did feminism even get a foothold in academia, another aspect of the system they call patriarchy?

Why, Patriarchal money, of course!

Ever wonder where women’s studies as an academic area originated? So did Capital Research center’s Kimberly Schuld, and she tracked that information down. In an article published in Front Page Magazine, she wrote

“Women’s Studies professor and feminist author Susan M. Hartmann credits the Ford Foundation with being a substantive force that created the feminist movement. In fact, Ford’s support of women’s studies and feminist causes is so extensive that it cannot be summarized in an article of this length. The subject is ripe for a full-length book. It is safe to say that without the Ford Foundation, feminism would not have been successful in gaining such a strong foothold in academia, and by extension, politics.”

The program, conceived in 1970 after a handful of women’s studies courses cropped up in several universities, was funded by the Ford foundation in 1972, the same year as Title IX took effect. That million dollar national fellowship program for "faculty and doctoral dissertation research on the role of women in society and Women's Studies broadly construed” helped significantly to promote the area of study. Within a decade, there were over 100 such programs in schools all over the US, headed up and operated by feminist ideologues. Today, it’s unusual for a university to not have such a department, now referred to as “interdisciplinary studies.” 

Remember, it was from within this academic area that the research standards which have so badly skewed public perception on intimate partner and sexual violence originated. Mary P. Koss, the creator of the survey method most researchers use to measure the scope and prevalence of these types of violence, was a women’s studies professor at Kent State university in the 80s when she came up with that method. There is a direct line between massive funding by sources feminists would arguably call elements or agents of the patriarchy in any other discussion, through feminism’s academic presence to feminism’s influence on law and policy.

In Schuld’s book, Capital Research Center’s guide to feminist organizations, she pointed out that groups like the National Organization for women receive millions of dollars in major gifts, corporate and foundation grants and donations, legacies and bequests. NOW’s legal defense fund, for instance, is the beneficiary of tens of thousands each from individual corporate donors; phone companies, credit card companies and banks, investment companies, you name it. Among those funding the organization is Conde-Nast publications, the company that bought Reddit.com in 2006 and maintained ownership until 2011. It was during that time that feminists pretty much took over the site.

The Feminist Majority foundation has received hundreds of thousands from government grants and private donors, including Soros Foundation donations totalling $375,000 between 1997 and 2001 for the promotion of abortion clinics and the morning after pill. 

The guide lists numerous women’s organizations receiving similar funding, most of which have donors and stated goals in common. Then there are the multitude of government grants for organizations serving what feminist groups have convinced legislators are women’s interests, making millions of dollars available to those who can convince the funding’s gatekeepers they meet the requirements. Among the laws creating such funding is the violence against women act, which created “Formula Grants” that pay for a variety of services, including representatives to accompany women who have made domestic violence allegations when they go to court. Between the hundreds of programs in existence, if you want to work for a feminist cause, or to use the label “research” to camouflage the creation of feminist propaganda, there are millions of dollars in funding to be pulled from Uncle Sam’s deep pockets.

And where does Uncle Sam get his money?

Mostly men, actually. Men pay 200% of the taxes that women initially pay, and in most age groups, women get back more from the government than they have paid in, meaning that the vast majority of net tax collection comes from men. Men fund the government. Women - especially feminist women - benefit from it, a federal budget that runs in the trillions of dollars. 

Ladies, that’s an awfully expensive bicycle.


















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