“Keep your mouth shut” A Letter from a Feminist Reader and My Response

Hi, “Margery is an old lady name“!

First off, I’d like to apologize for it taking me so long to get back to your email. I’ve been away from the blog for a few months now and only recently returned to Twitter to participate in #WomenAgainstFeminism. I do want to get back to blogging but I’ve been so busy lately and so burned out that it’s been a pain just to organize my thoughts enough to sit down and get anything remotely meaningful posted.

Speaking of which, thanks for the motivation! I hope you don’t mind my responding to your email publicly. It’s just too good to not see the light of day. You’ve brought up some key feminist points here and I’d like to take the opportunity to respond to them and allow others to chew on both of our takes and maybe offer their own opinions. Please feel free to respond in the comments or via email, whichever is best for you.

You wrote… (click image to enlarge)

Screen Shot 2014-08-17 at 8.45.04 AM

As far as I can tell you are making 7 points here:

  1.  That this lifestyle is selfish (and therefore I am selfish) because it ignores the problems the world faces like overpopulation and animal rights in favor of some idyllic 1950s fantasy land.
  2. That both I and the women like me are lazy and serve no purpose because we don’t work outside of the home or, as you put it, have a real job.
  3. Feminism is actually a really great thing that you love and that I am very wrong about.
  4. Obviously being unaware of the plight of women in the Middle East (see point 1) I need to go live in a place like Iraq to see just how great feminism is and how wrong I am about life.
  5. Gender roles have been awful for you because you felt pigeonholed and they are also awful for men and if I was a decent and halfway intelligent human being I’d see that and reject them, too.
  6. I’m free to hate feminism but I’m not free to talk about it.
  7. I’m holding people (namely women, I assume) back.

1. “I feel like your “lifestyle” choice is very selfish. This is not the 50s. We have real problems in the world and we are overpopulated enough as it is with so many children without homes that our world doesn’t need women staying at home barefoot and pregnant poppin’ out tons of kids. We have animals being abused and enslaved, billions slaughtered inhumanely every year and we are killing our planet.. the planet your kids and your kids’ kids will inherit someday.”

Why my lifestyle choice as opposed to yours? What about it makes it inherently selfish? You seem to think that submissive wives are ipso facto unaware and uninterested in current affairs, the planet, the future, etc. You’re wrong. You’re very wrong. Sure, some wives (submissive or not) couldn’t care less. I’m not one of them, though. But I find that my lifestyle has little to do with my ability to give a damn about other things. If you read my blog and my Twitter feed this should be clear to you. I obviously am not just talking about my husband and kids here, right?

That said: home and family is important and worth one’s focus- even if it is sole or primary. Overpopulation is not a thing. I am hardly popping out kids all the time (I have 5. Michelle Duggar I am not). Factory farming is a horrible thing that we should all be aware of. Etc.

2. “So, why don’t you get a real job and make yourself useful? Try becoming a productive member of soceity and do something that the world actually needs you to do? Otherwise, you serve no purpose.. you’re just sucking air.”“I think women who their only goal in life is to be a wife and a mother and have a man take care of them are LAZY. Then they always argue “well being a mom is real work.. it’s a real job.. i earn my place” blah blah blah.. LAZY. You are a bump on a log.. and yes, I’m sorry but you are weak.”

Is childcare important? Education? Do you value teachers? Nannies? Do you need to eat? Have a clean home? Have accessible transportation? It’s the sign of an unhealthy obsession with money when the only time a person can be seen as serving a purpose is if there is a paycheck attached. If I wasn’t watching after my children, feeding them, educating them, etc someone else would be. But since they’d be being paid for it their jobs have value. The only way that that possibly makes sense is if money is the deciding factor in all things right and just in the world. If it is to you, fair enough. It’s not to me.

You accuse me of not thinking about the world my children will inherit when not only do I think about that but I am also concerned about the children this world will inherit. Children matter. By extension that people that rear them really matter.

3. “I am a feminist and you know what? I am a PROUD feminist. People use the word feminist in a derogatory way as if it’s supposed to be an insult.. saying feminists are man hating lesbians who hate God and are out of control. They’ll forever be single and miserable and single if they don’t learn there place in the world? The definition of feminism: the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men. I don’t see anything wrong with that.”

Let’s get something out of the way- feminists can be happy, hot, blissfully coupled, etc. I don’t deny this. Denying it would serve no purpose as it is easily disproved. More to the point whether or not these types of feminists exist holds no sway over my opinion of feminism. I don’t think that way about feminists, you only assume that I do.

So far you have accused me of being a brainwashed mindless idiot that only pops out kids and otherwise serves no purpose. All of this is based in your world view that is deeply influenced by feminism- something you are PROUD of. You don’t see anything wrong with that? Yes, it all looks great when you’re toeing the line. But women like me? Women that reject the feminist ideal? Well, we’re told to keep our mouths shut and that we can’t possibly be worth anything. In fact, that’s exactly what you’ve said to me here. Feminism is bigger than a dictionary definition. I bet you can understand this because I bet you feel the same way about racism. Feminism as it stands now does not support women like me. I’d explain how and why but all you have to do is reread your email to me. Feminists themselves do not speak for all women nor do they support equality for all women. “Keep your mouth shut” Ring any bells?

4. “If you are so anti-feminism then maybe you should go live in Iraq and get a taste of that and then MAYBE you would change your stance a bit.”

Doubtful. But you might. Western feminism looks like a bunch of entitled women whining about ridiculous little things, most of which are of their own invention when you actually hold up to the real issues both men and women face around the world. This is another reason I’m not a feminist. Not only does the concerns of western feminists speak to how spoiled rotten they are but it also speaks to how little they care about men. “We need feminism because women in other countries…” let me stop you right there. Read this:

Screen Shot 2014-08-17 at 1.32.23 PM

 

5. “I fucking hate gender roles. All my life I’ve had an issue with being told how I am supposed to be to be accepted, but I’m also against them for the guys.. being told real men don’t cry, getting beat up or called gay if they wear pink or love to cook or anything seen as “girly”. It’s fucking sick. It’s narrow minded.. only morons think like that.”

I don’t like being told what to do, either. No, wait, that’s a lie. I don’t like being told what to do by anyone that isn’t my husband. This is just one of the reasons I reject feminism. As you yourself have made clear feminism is not open to women embracing traditional/natural gender roles. We’re mocked, we’re ridiculed, we’re told the only way to amount to something is to reject gender roles, full stop. And that’s not even getting into how traditional men are demonized!

I love gender roles. Can you point to a place where I have ever said that you have to, too? If you truly don’t then more power to you, dear. I couldn’t care less. Go out and flip them on their head all you want. But I value them and I don’t deny that they exist in most part due to the natural order of things. It’s really that simple.

6. “So you know if you wanna hate feminists then by all means that’s your choice, but do the rest of us a favor and keep your mouth shut”

I want you to reread your statement here. Now read it again. Really let what you are actually saying sink in here. Can you really say you support women? That feminism and thus you are really just about equality, voice, choice when you tell women like me our choices are wrong choice that need to be weeded out and that we shouldn’t ever speak if we disagree? “Keep your mouth shut” No, I don’t think I will. I think that women are smart enough to think and speak for themselves. I’m sorry you disagree.

I’ve said before that I get more misogyny from feminists than I do from men in general and traditional men in particular. Case in point.

7. “its people like you who are the ones holding people back who want to evolve as a species and move foward and progress.”

What does this even mean? I am not so self-absorbed that I think that what me and mine do in the privacy of our own home has huge ramifications for the entire world. It doesn’t. Now you may have a point if I was, say, marching on Washington demanding laws be made that keep women in the home, away from the polls, etc, but I’m not. I believe in equal treatment under the law. I believe in it so much that I am deeply disturbed by the fact that feminism is so against it. They demand equal outcome. They want the ratio of women to men in ideal professions and leadership positions to match up if not exceed. Equal outcome stands at complete odds with equal treatment. In order for this feminist utopia to come about we have to “level the playing field” which means we have to give women preferential treatment and leave men in the dust. That’s not equality, it’s supremacy. So no, I don’t agree with holding people back, that’s why I’m not a feminist.

xoxo,

Margery

 

16 thoughts on ““Keep your mouth shut” A Letter from a Feminist Reader and My Response

  1. This cannot be said enough: women are not the equals of men. Free Northerner wrote on it just the other day. Women have whatever they have because men allow it. I can take anything I want from women, and they cannot stop me. They have to get another man to stop me for them. No matter what you do to reach equality, you will never get it.

    The worst part for women is that feminists push more and more men into apathy or antagonism towards women. Those men will not be giving women a thing. Considering how women only have what men allow, this is not going to end well for feminism.

    The Shadowed Knight

  2. A fantastic return. Please excuse one point of disagreement. It seems to me that women in traditional gender roles are more likely to produce children, and more children, than the typical advocate for feminism. If such a woman also invests substantial effort in raising her children, then it is likely that her children will be more likely to produce further children sharing her values and not the values espoused (interesting word, that) by feminism advocates. In such regard, you, in concert with your husband, are indeed “holding back” the cause of feminism by means of evolution by natural selection, whereas feminism does not so successfully reproduce, being opposed to stay-at-home moms and similar sexual reproduction strategies.

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  6. The English language has filed a restraining order against your offended correspondent, Margery. God. *shakes head vigorously* If I hadn’t graded papers in college, I’d swear Mizzzzz Offended here was in middle school. And that bit about how you’re holding us all back from “evolving as a species” by having children is just priceless.

    But I think my favorite part is this: “We have animals being abused and enslaved…” When I first read that passage, I thought to myself she was saying, “Why are you having babies when there are animals to abuse? So little time, so many kittens to send to work in the sweatshop!”

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