Become an 1819 Member
American feminism is dead. May she rest in peace.
Though little was said about it due to the pandemic, the year 2020 was the 100-year mark for American women’s suffrage. In a subsequent Pew Research Survey, women were asked about the impact of feminism on their lives; 41% of women said it helped them at least a little; one in 10 said feminism helped them a lot; 7% said feminism hurt them, while half said it has neither helped nor hurt them personally.
The 1970s brand of forceful feminism was a misguided movement toward unmoored sexual freedom that has now fully devolved into little more than an astroturf abortion lobbying mafia. American feminists have decided that unabated abortion rights are the only issue that matters to women that matter (liberals), and, therefore, have relegated themselves to harping in their echo chamber on the View and wearing red capes in court protests while covering for Hollywood and political elites in the false #metoo movement. American feminism is dead because it ignored the fact that most women aren’t anti-male militants who want abortion on demand until birth (or after). American feminism is dead because it allowed itself to be used by political power brokers instead of standing on principle or even asking women themselves what they thought or needed. Any redeeming value the movement had left was lost when it was purchased at auction by the highest bidder, who just happened to be in the extremely lucrative business of helping sex traffickers, aiding domestic abusers and promoting sex-selective abortion until birth: Planned Parenthood.
American feminism has always been decidedly insular, overtly anti-religious and overwhelmingly nationalistic. As international women have fought for rights given to American women literally hundreds of years ago, American feminists have remained eerily quiet. It’s strange that a group of people who seem overly concerned with global issues such as climate change, international COVID mitigations, and illegal immigration doesn’t seem at all concerned with the plight of women outside of our (intentionally porous) borders. Maybe their concern isn’t for other women at all but for their own personal desires, the size of their bank accounts, and their access to political power. Maybe that’s why they assume conservative women barely even exist, and when we do, it’s because we’ve mindlessly adopted our father’s or our husband’s politics or have a severe sense of self-hatred (insert eye roll here).
Regardless of the reasoning, a clear case in point is the last month of complete silence from those formerly known as American feminists regarding the political upheaval in Iran. Perhaps they are limited by the fact that there are apparently many liberal women who are suddenly unable to even explain the definition of what a woman is (adult female for 1000, Alex). Perhaps they don’t like the colors of the Kurdish flag as much as the Ukrainian one, so they didn’t put it on their Facebook page in a show of solidarity. Perhaps actual protests across the world aren’t as compelling as the “mostly non-violent” ones back home that they willingly supported with their money and their virtue-signaling black squares on Instagram. Or perhaps no one in democrat-owned corporate media instructed them to care, so they simply don’t. Which type of woman has a mind of her own again?
For those who do care, protests have continued for over a month across Iran following the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini. She was detained by Iran’s morality police for breaching hijab (head-covering) laws and tragically died in police custody. During the ensuing protests, Iranian police and paramilitary forces have killed 185 people. Human Rights groups say that at least 19 of those killed in protests and the aftermath have been children. Unrest has spread across the country for weeks following Amini’s death and shows no sign of slowing. Protesters have set fire to police stations, blocked traffic surrounding an infamous prison holding political dissenters, and killed pro-government forces in their demands to end the oppressive Islamist regime. Real women are fighting back against the actual oppression their government is enforcing upon them, and there aren’t any pink hats to be found anywhere.
Lisa Daftari, a Middle East expert and editor-in-chief of The Foreign Desk, tweeted a video showing Iranian forces dragging a screaming female protestor to the ground before depositing her unceremoniously into a van. Daftari is speaking out about the protests in Iran and credits citizen journalists for making sure the world sees what is happening, but where are American former feminists? Crickets.
I, for one, am glad insular and nationalistic American feminism is dead because it was as disingenuous as it was dangerous. Just as the Equal Rights Amendment was totally unnecessary and is still a bad idea, so is militant political feminism. American women already have equality from the 14th Amendment as well as a host of other protections in virtually all areas of American life, on purpose. We are treated equally in employment, education, housing, voting rights and public accommodations because we are Americans — not because we are women. In fact, the ERA and its equally unattractive grandbaby, the Equality Act, would actually be harmful to girls and women. Unfortunately, those impossible-to-define women formerly known as American feminists have already been sold to that highest bidder (who is already busy changing out his abortion mills exam rooms for gender intervention ones), so it’s up to us virtually non-existent and mostly mindless conservative women to care about both the plight of our sisters in Iran and fight our own political fights at home.
Feminism is dead, but politically savvy conservative American women aren’t. We are willing to fight for our ability to exist, for our daughters’ ability to be proud of being born a girl, and to look forward to becoming a woman and a mother. We are not going to remain silent while our daughter’s sports and private spaces are forcibly taken. We are not going to sit idly by as we are mocked by people dressing as caricatures of us. We cannot permit our children to be hyper-sexualized in our schools or in our society. We will not allow our God-given female traits and abilities to be canceled by nonsensical secular progressive definitions. We are wives, not partners. We are mothers, not chest-feeders. We are women, not undefinable and interchangeable humans. American women are going to have to fight for our daughters to have the same rights and abilities that we have enjoyed for over 100 years. Just as the suffragists were willing to speak up and sacrifice for our freedoms, conservative women have to be willing to speak the truth and do whatever it takes to ensure that our daughters have the same ability to grow into strong and equal American women. False feminism is dead. It’s time for real women to stand up.
Stephanie Holden Smith is an experienced policy analyst, political commentator, and public speaker. Smith has worked and volunteered in Governmental Affairs in Alabama since 1997, including lobbying for a Fortune 500 company and serving as Deputy Director of Finance for the State of Alabama. She is currently the principal of Thatcher Coalition LLC. To contact Stephanie, please go to http://thatchercoalition.com.
The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information Commentary@1819News.com.
Don't miss out! Subscribe to our newsletter and get our top stories every weekday morning.