I’m currently in LA for a fascinating conference on family violence, “From Ideology to Inclusion,” which examines alternatives to conventional feminist views of domestic violence. (Glenn Sacks of Fathers & Families is here, and we’re getting along fine.) The event is fascinating, especially the first speaker I got to hear, Erin Pizzey.
More later — I will be writing about this one.
About a month ago, I had an op-ed in The Boston Globe about the rise of single motherhood and what it means for fathers — ironically, at a time when equal parenting as an ideal has been making a lot of inroads. A couple of days later, there followed this commentary from Shannon LC Cate on the Strollerderby parenting blog. I meant to reply to it sooner, but first I was busy with other things and then I decided to put it off until Father’s Day. So, here is it.
Ms. Cate’s post is titled “Unwed Motherhood on the Rise; Paternalists on the Warpath.” Evidently, to point out that in general, children are better off having a father (and that, among other things, the glorification of the mother-child family unit takes us back to the not-very-feminist notion of child-rearing as women’s work) is to be a “paternalist on the warpath.”
My column on the “women’s issues” part of Obama’s Cairo speech is here.
See also this excellent piece by Christopher Hitchens on Slate.com on the same topic.
As I said in my previous post, I had a largely positive reaction to Obama’s Cairo speech. However, I agree with David Frum’s criticsm of Obama’s comments about women’s rights — which should have been a key part of an “outreach to Muslims” speech. In contrast to Obama’s strong affirmation of the principles of democracy, his discussion of women’s issues and Islam was too general, too weak, and afflicted with excessive even-handedness. (Contrary to what many readers on Reason.com’s Hit & Run blog believe, I am not really a champion of indiscriminate moral equivalence.)
Here is the passage in its entirety: Continue reading
This caught my eye of National Review‘s blog, The Corner:
Momma Mia!: The Case of Candace Parker [Kathryn Jean Lopez]
A married 22-year-old is subject to scorn for embracing motherhood.
The link is to a column by Colleen Carroll Campbell, described as “an author, television and radio host and St. Louis-based fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.” Campbell writes about 22-year-old Women’s National Basketball Association star and Olympic gold medalist Candace Parker, a player for the Los Angeles Sparks and wife of Sacramento Kings forward Shelden Williams who recently announced that she was pregnant. According to Campbell:
So I googled myself today (yes, I ego-surf) and came across this piece on the Slate blog, The XX Factor, eviscerating a feature in More magazine (a glossy targeting 40+ women) in which three writers, including yours truly, comment on the Sarah Palin phenomenon. Slate ladyblogger Susannah Breslin snarks that the magazine ran the feature “in a blatant, desperate, and misguided bid for page-views and newsstand sales.” Which is pretty … misguided, because the Palin forum is not on the cover of the magazine and, as far as I can tell, not on its website either.
Breslin then comments:
Lisa Schiffren writes: “Knowing that conservative, evangelical Christian women want their daughters to see such a role model [as Palin] tells us that feminism, in its best sense, has won its central battle.” Eh? What? I can’t even figure out what that means.
Now, I’m not a huge Lisa Schiffren fan, but is it really that hard to figure out what she means? (You know, like … even conservative, evangelical Christians now admire women who are strong leaders and achievers in the public sphere?)
And then there’s this:
Over on Alas, a Blog, in a thread where the comments are limited to “feminists and feminist allies,” Barry Deutsch (Ampersand) deconstructs a speech by Christina Hoff Sommers, a leading critic of feminist orthodoxies (and a good friend of mine, though there are certainly times when we disagree). In particular, he takes her to task for saying that many feminists are anti-male.
Does Christina paint with too broad a brush? Quite possibly. But a couple of things about Barry’s post:
(1) Barry says he hasn’t seen any male-hating attitudes from feminists except for a few people on the Ms. boards way, way back. I’m guessing the late Andrea Dworkin, famous for such aperçus as, “Under patriarchy, every woman’s son is her potential betrayer and also the inevitable rapist or exploiter of another woman,” or “Male sexuality, drunk on its intrinsic contempt for all life, but especially for women’s lives…”, does not qualify? Continue reading