This just in! Career antifeminists Phyllis Schlafly and Suzanne Venker blame feminism for the nation’s divorce rate (among other things)! In their upcoming book The Flipside of Feminism: What Conservative Women Know—and Men Can’t Say, Schlafly and Venker posit that feminists, with our love of divorce, our hatred of men, our general negativity, and our blatant duplicitousness, have fostered a culture where splitting up a marriage is as easy and breezy as splitting the check at a restaurant.
Here are a few points these partners in douche made in a recent HuffPo interview with Beverly Willett about their latest book:
Feminism’s goal, first and foremost, is easy divorce:
Schlafly: They [feminists] wanted to be independent of men and liberated from the duties of marriage and motherhood. So, their first legislative goal was the adoption of easy-to-get divorce.
Notice, of course, that Schlafly doesn’t elaborate on why feminists might have concerned themselves with divorce, or why women during that time might have felt oppressed by the institution of marriage. Of course, this is coming from someone who believes marital rape is impossible (because marriage implies automatic consent no matter what else happens), so there you go.
Feminism is a hoax!
Schlafly: None of the feminists’ goals, including the Equal Rights Amendment, offered women a single benefit they didn’t have before, zip. But it would have taken away a lot of the rights and benefits women then possessed such as the right to be exempt from the military and the right of a wife to be supported by her husband. Feminists demeaned marriage and motherhood even though most women want marriage and motherhood. Feminism has run its course, and surveys show that women are not as happy now as they were in the 1950s.
Venker: Let me add that feminism also taught women that men are idiots, so now there’s a lack of respect for men who are considered an inconvenience. It’s a wonder any marriage survives.
So feminism is (or excuse me, “was”—we’ve run our course already) about taking rights away from women in the interest of demeaning marriage and motherhood. Oh, and about teaching women that men are idiots. Not only is that a bunch of horse hockey, but Schlafly and Venker fail to explain why they think feminists would take the time to do all of this. I guess it’s because we LOVE DIVORCE SO MUCH? Oh, and we are “negative by nature.” (Maybe that could be the name of a feminist Naughty By Nature tribute band? Except we would so NOT be down with “O.P.P.” We are too negative.)
This is all a conspiracy! Feminism is controlling the media and the government!
Schlafly: The decline of marriage is the result of the work of highly motivated special-interest groups, and they enjoy the support of Big Media. Feminists have also had the support of academia and Hollywood, and they did a pretty good job of intimidating politicians.
Ah yes. That’s why we’re living so high on the hog these days, what with the numbers of women contributing to Big Media, the lack of gender equality in academia, the culture of misogyny in Hollywood, and all of the funding cuts these so-called intimidated politicians are pushing on us. These are our salad days, folks! And we have divorce to thank for it! MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!
Schlafly and Venker go on to suggest that we should legislate 50-50 joint custody of children in divorces so that women can’t flee marriage with their children as easily, and that couples should stay together until children leave the home unless addiction or abuse is involved. Anything to keep us feminists away from our beloved divorces, right? Because we’ll do anything to get them! (No, we won’t.)
I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that Schlafly and Venker have missed the point with these ideas. Not only is feminism NOT hell-bent on dissolving the institution of marriage, feminists aren’t to blame for America’s problems (we also don’t consider men to be idiots, nor do we all have bad attitudes). If the Flipside of Feminism involves hanging out with ol’ Phyllis and Suzanne, talking about how feminists pulled the wool over all of our eyes and made divorce seem sexy and cool, I’d just as soon stay over here on this side of feminism. You know, away from the douchebags.