Feminism and the Patriarchy Crutch

Unhappily, the early feminist movement married itself to socialism in the 1800’s. Even then, women did not feel they could make their case on their own.

Today’s feminists insist that for them to be free and equal, men need to change. Doesn’t this reek of complete dependence on men? If men need to give women equality, women are arguing from a self-imposed subordinate position. Now hear this: You cannot win when you negotiate from a position of weakness.

As it happens, nearly a century ago, women received the right to vote, to equal education, to own property and inherit. In short, all of the laws that kept women dependent upon men were eliminated.

I had a great aunt who was born in the late 1800’s. I remember questioning her about the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) when I was in my teens as it was one of the great debates of the time. She was opposed to it. Women were already equal in the eyes of the law. There is not a single word in the U.S. Constitution that subordinates women. The term “man” as used in the Constitution, she explained, is short for “mankind” which inherently includes women.  For that reason she also felt the 19th Amendment was unnecessary to establish women’s suffrage.

She knew whereof she spoke. Instead of marrying, in the early 1900’s she got a good education, I believe she was graduated from college. She started a business school for women in Georgia and ran it successfully until she retired. The difference between her and today’s feminists is that she didn’t need or ask for anyone’s permission nor was she dependent upon anyone else’s cooperation or respect. No one tried to stop her. She was already liberated, merely by her own volition.

Women who lack that volition are subordinating themselves, not the patriarchy. The “patriarchy” is the feminist social construct concocted to blame men for their lack of self-respect, initiative and competitive advantage.

Nothing any man ever does can liberate you from the self-imposed constraints of your own belief system. While unable to change their own minds, for some reason, feminists believe that they are entitled to change men’s minds. Think about that.

As long as you see the “patriarchy” as the cause of obstacles you encounter, you will never overcome them because you will never take responsibility. Whether you know it or not, men encounter the very same obstacles that women do. They just don’t have the sexism/discrimination. . .patriarchy crutch and blame the other guy or gal. Some take corrective action, acquire more skills or market themselves or negotiate more aggressively. Others just accept their circumstances.

I know this for a fact because I have coached several men and women in doubling their incomes or finding jobs after years of unemployment due to the tech bubble burst in the early 2000’s. Please note, every one of these people was under employed or under paid. You cannot reasonably expect to double your income if you are already working at the peak of your skill level at market value. If you want more money, you need to make yourself more valuable.

Those that followed my advice succeeded, those who were not willing to do the extra work did not. One single woman with a Masters Degree told me it was easier for me because I was a divorced mother of three with only a high school diploma. I was suddenly enlightened. I had not realized those were competitive advantages in the marketplace. But maybe, just maybe, if you are determined and believe in yourself, just being whoever you honestly are is a competitive advantage.

Over the course of my various careers, I probably encountered more sexism than I realized.  I really didn’t care because I never saw it as an obstacle. I still don’t. People who are sexist or racist are not the best and brightest among us. Why on earth would I want to work for a company that put such an intellectually inferior person in any decision-making position? Sounds like a dodged bullet to me. There may have been companies that hired me or hired someone else for sexist reasons. But by far the vast majority made their hiring decisions based on good business sense. In fact, if I am offered more than 1 in 3 positions/contracts I interview for, I bump up my rate until I hit the 1:3 ratio.

You can control and change yourself. That is what freedom is. In a free society, you do not have the right to control or change others nor are you obligated to allow others to change or control you. Those who feel entitled to use the government to impose their will upon others are a danger to our liberty and individual sovereignty.

At a personal level, while tilting at imaginary windmills instead of improving your circumstances, you will either never achieve your potential or never recognize and appreciate it if you do. Use your freedom. No one can take it from you without your permission.

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