And by Hell, I mean the ideology ash heap, which might as well be a lake of fire and brimstone for all of its recovery potential. Once dead, ideologies stay dead; Eugenics, for instance. (I wish we could kill Marxism already.)
Forget for a moment the blatant arm-twisting of Madeleine Albright at a recent Hillary Clinton campaign stop where she threatened — literally t-h-r-e-a-t-e-n-e-d — young women who dare to think independently.
“There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other,” she said.
Image source: YouTube
The real exposure in that remark is the absolute failure of feminism to move hearts and minds. If it had integral value at this point in history, Madeleine Albright wouldn’t have to browbeat anyone to toe its line. Persuasion is so much more powerful than threats, but it only works if you have something persuasive to offer. The irony is that feminism was once so persuasive and powerful that it accomplished truly great things. First on the list would be empowering women to define themselves — if they so wish — completely apart from men.
Feminist icon Gloria Steinem threw what was left of feminism under the bus by dismissing supporters of Bernie Sanders as boy crazy, i.e., defining them in relation to men. How insulting is it to all women that Steinem characterizes any of us as eyelash-batting, muscle-swooning lightweights whose intellects don’t work in the presence of men?
Even more insulting, although I doubt she realizes it, is the naked truth that she demeans these women only because they don’t agree with her political views. The entire raison d’être of feminism was to free women from male domination, and here is the preeminent icon of feminism holding dominion over what is acceptable behavior by women.
That’s two nails—threats and disdain—in the feminist coffin. All we need is a third strike, and I think we can stick a fork in ‘er.
Paging Hillary Clinton.
She is the nuclear option—the death knell of dishonesty, manipulation, and embarrassingly shameless ambition. Who wants to grow up to be her? Whom does she inspire? I venture to suggest that the answer is no one. That doesn’t mean she doesn’t have supporters. Plenty of women, especially older women, have hitched their wagons to her star, but if she isn’t going to catch that train to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, what does that say about them? The truth is, nothing; but it is only human nature to lose a bit of yourself when a long-cherished goal goes poof in a wisp of smoke.
Timing is everything, and the tide has gone out on old-school feminism—and old-school feminists apparently as well. Young women don’t want to swim around in victimhood; they’re too busy rising up to rule the world. Hillary Clinton’s brand of feminism vaporizes if no one is buying victimhood. It hurts to watch. To see a fellow human being — who, admittedly, scratched and clawed and lied her way over the carcasses of other human beings to be where she is today — fail so epically in the public eye is almost worse than seeing Kim Kardashian in her Kanye West-inspired maternity clothes.
What to do and where to go with these inconvenient, incontrovertible truths? Jerry Seinfeld may have the answer, showcased in a transcendently hilarious bit he performed to usher in "The Tonight Show" in New York. In prime Seinfeld mode, with mouth-watering sarcasm, he mused as to why the United States Postal Service, with its original 1620 business model of licking and walking, found itself struggling to compete in our digital, fiber optic, hyperspace world. The kicker, which I remember verbatim: “The Post Office is a dazed and confused distant branch of the Cub Scouts.” Mean, I grant you, but on point in every way.
The United States Postal Service was, at its inception, revolutionary in transforming the world into a network of communication that had never existed. It was the USPS that delivered college acceptance letters to the best and brightest minds of each generation, many of whom pushed the boundaries of technology and then artificial intelligence to the heights we enjoy today. Now the USPS is a joke on "The Tonight Show." Nothing lasts forever, and forward progress is unstoppable. UPS, FedEx, email and texting are poised to make the USPS obsolete, but it sure had a good run in its day.
Feminism, when it began and while it achieved breathtaking gains for women, was historic. Today, its adversarial focus on discrimination and victimhood cannot endure in the cyber horizon world of opportunity and power for 21st Century Women. With much respect to Gloria Steinem and Madeleine Albright (and even Hillary Clinton, if you must), nothing lasts forever, but you sure had a good run in your day. If you’re reduced to coercing and demeaning other women to toe the feminist line, your time is up; today’s young women are moved only by persuasion. (How anyone is persuaded by the unicorns-for-everyone philosophy of Bernie Sanders is beyond me, but like they say, youth is wasted on the young.)
Let feminism be retired like a beloved, highly regarded flag with appreciation and gratitude. It’s time to get on with the business of conquering the world already.
Donna Carol Voss is an author, blogger, speaker, and mom. A Berkeley grad, a former atheist, pagan, and hot mess, she is now a Mormon on purpose and an original thinker on 21stcentury living. Her memoir, “One of Everything,” traces the path through one of everything she took to get here. Follow her on Twitter @donnacarolvoss or stop by www.donnacarolvoss.com.
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