A few weeks ago, Suzanne Venker – writer for Fox News.com – wrote a completely unoriginal and uninspired essay titled, “The War on Men.’ In it, she basically argues that women’s liberation and feminism has driven men from any desire to marry because they are sick of competing with us all of the time. They are sick of us paying bills and making them feel useless. They just want to take care of all of us! Why can’t we all just stop being so hard-headed and independent and be the nice little stay-at-home women we are supposed to be?
I’m paraphrasing a little. Here’s her own explanation:
In a nutshell, women are angry. They’re also defensive, though often unknowingly. That’s because they’ve been raised to think of men as the enemy. Armed with this new attitude, women pushed men off their pedestal (women had their own pedestal, but feminists convinced them otherwise) and climbed up to take what they were taught to believe was rightfully theirs.
Now the men have nowhere to go.
Just because you make your own money doesn’t mean your guy can’t pay the bill. Just because you value independence doesn’t mean you can’t take your husband’s last name. Just because you can do the same job a man can do doesn’t mean you need to let him know it.
Surrendering to your femininity means many things. It means letting your man be the man despite the fact that you’ve proved you’re his equal. It means recognizing the fact that you may very well want to stay home with your babies – and that that’s normal. It means if you do work outside the home, you don’t use your work to play tit-for-tat in your marriage. It means tapping into that part of yourself that’s genuinely vulnerable and really does need a man – even though the culture says you don’t.
Okay, so we can advance in our fields and be successful, but we just shouldn’t tell our men about our accomplishments. That makes total sense. We wouldn’t want them to think they married a competent human being. That’s not feminine! Should we open some offshore account to hide all this money that we don’t want to offend our men with?
I just love that she is perpetuating the myth of the un-marryable man. This seems to be taking the place of the “man shortage” myth that was popular for so long. It is the theory that divorce rates are up and men are marrying less because women are just too damned independent. In reality, everyone knows that divorce rates are up because women aren’t tethered to their homes and husbands like they were in the good old days that this woman seems to be waxing poetic for.
What’s really hilarious is she is writing all of these articles to promote her new book, ”How to Choose a Husband and Make Peace with Marriage.” I guess it’s okay that she’s outside the home making a living, because she’s making a living teaching women how to be good little wives and rail against feminism – the very vehicle that enabled her to make money spewing this nonsense in the first place.
Oh, the irony.