How the Feminists’ “War against Boys” Paved the Way for Radical IslamBy FjordmanSome commentators like to point out that many of the most passionate and bravest defenders of the West are women, citing Italian writer Oriana Fallaci and others. But women like Ms. Fallaci, brave as they might be, are not representative of all Western women. If you look closely, you will notice that, on average, Western women are actually more supportive of Multiculturalism and massive immigration than are Western men.
I got many comments on my posts about Muslim anti-female violence in Scandinavia. Several of my readers asked what Scandinavian men are doing about this. What happened to those Vikings, anyway? Did they drink too much mead in Valhalla? Despite the romantic mystique surrounding them today, the Vikings were for the most part savage barbarians. However, I doubt they would have looked the other way while their daughters were harassed by Muslims. In some ways, this makes present-day Scandinavians worse barbarians than the Vikings ever were.
One of the reasons for this lack of response is a deliberate and pervasive censorship in the mainstream media, to conceal the full scale of the problem from the general public. However, I suspect that the most important reason has to do with the extreme anti-masculine strand of feminism that has permeated Scandinavia for decades. The male protective instinct doesn’t take action because Scandinavian women have worked tirelessly to eradicate it, together with everything else that smacks of traditional masculinity. Because of this, feminism has greatly weakened Scandinavia, and perhaps Western civilization as whole.
The only major political party in Norway that has voiced any serious opposition to the madness of Muslim immigration is the rightwing Progress Party. This is a party which receives about two thirds or even 70% male votes. At the opposite end of the scale we have the Socialist Left party, with two thirds or 70% female votes. The parties most critical of the current immigration are typically male parties, while those who praise the Multicultural society are dominated by feminists. And across the Atlantic, if only American women voted, the US President during 9/11 would be called Al Gore, not George Bush.
The standard explanation in my country for this gender gap in voting patterns is that men are more “xenophobic and selfish” than women, who are more open-minded and possess a greater ability to show solidarity with outsiders. That’s one possibility. Another one is that men traditionally have had the responsibility for protecting the “tribe” and spotting an enemy, a necessity in a dog-eat-dog world. Women are more naïve, and less willing to rationally think through the long-term consequences of avoiding confrontation or dealing with unpleasant realities now.
Didn’t feminists always claim that the world would be a better place with women in the driver’s seat, because they wouldn’t sacrifice their own children? Well, isn’t that exactly what they are doing now? Smiling and voting for parties that keep the doors open to Muslim immigration, the same Muslims who will be attacking their children tomorrow?
Another possibility is that Western feminists fail to confront Muslim immigration for ideological reasons. Many of them are silent on Islamic oppression of women because they have also embraced “Third-Worldism” and anti-Western sentiments. I see some evidence in support of this thesis.
American writer Phyllis Chesler has sharply criticized her sisters in books such as The Death of Feminism. She feels that too many feminists have abandoned their commitment to freedom and “become cowardly herd animals and grim totalitarian thinkers,” thus failing to confront Islamic terrorism. She paints a portrait of current U.S. University campuses as steeped in “a new and diabolical McCarthyism” spearheaded by leftist rhetoric.
Chesler has a point. Judging from the rhetoric of many feminists, all the oppression in the world comes from Western men, who are oppressing both women and non-Western men. Muslim immigrants are “fellow victims” of this bias. At best, they may be patriarchal pigs, but no worse than Western men. Many Western universities have courses filled with hate against men that would be unthinkable the other way around. That’s why Scandinavian feminists don’t call for Scandinavian men to show a more traditional masculinity and protect them against aggression from Muslim men. Most Norwegian feminists are also passionate anti-racists who will oppose any steps to limit Muslim immigration as “racism and xenophobia.”
Totalitarian feminists in Norway are threatening to shut down private companies that refuse to recruit at least 40 percent women to their boards by 2007, a Soviet-style regulation of the economy in the name of gender equality. I have read comments from Socialist politicians and leftist commentators in certain newspapers, such as the pro-Multicultural and feminist — critics would say Female Supremacist — newspaper Dagbladet, arguing that we should have quotas for Muslim immigrants, too.
What started out as radical feminism has thus gradually become egalitarianism, the fight against “discrimination” of any kind, the idea that all groups of people should have an equal share of everything and that it is the state’s responsibility to ensure that this takes place. A prime example of this is Norway’s Ombud for Gender Equality, which in 2006 became The Equality and Anti-discrimination Ombud. The Ombud’s duties are “to promote equality and combat discrimination on the basis of gender, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability and age.”
Western feminists have cultivated a culture of victimhood in the West, where you gain political power through your status in the victim hierarchy. In many ways, this is what Political Correctness is all about. They have also demanded, and largely got, a re-writing of the history books to address an alleged historic bias; their world view has entered the school curriculum, gained a virtual hegemony in the media and managed to portray their critics as “bigots.” They have even succeeded in changing the very language we use, to make it less offensive. Radical feminists are the vanguard of PC.
When Muslims, who above all else like to present themselves as victims, enter Western nations, they find that much of their work has already been done for them. They can use a pre-established tradition of claiming to be victims, demanding state intervention and maybe quotas to address this, as well as a complete re-writing of history and public campaigns against bigotry and hate speech. Western feminists have thus paved the way for the forces that will dismantle Western feminism, and end up in bed, sometimes quite literally, with the people who want to enslave them.
Swedish Marxist politician Gudrun Schyman has suggested a bill that would collectively tax Swedish men for violence against women. In a 2002 speech, the same Schyman famously posited that Swedish men were just like the Taliban. A male columnist in newspaper Aftonbladet responded by saying that Schyman was right: All men are like the Taliban.
The irony is that in an Islamic state similar to the one the Taliban established in Afghanistan, certain groups of people, in this case non-Muslims, pay a special punishment tax simply because of who they are, not because of what they earn. Radical feminists such as Ms. Schyman are thus closer to the Taliban than Western men, although I’m pretty sure that irony would be completely missed on them.
Schyman’s battle cry is “Death to the nuclear family!” I have heard the same slogan repeated by young Norwegian feminists in recent years. Schyman seethed that today’s family unit is “built on a foundation of traditional gender roles in which women are subordinate to men. The hierarchy of gender, for which violence against women is the ultimate expression, has been cemented.” “Conservatives want to strengthen the family. I find this of grave concern.”
In the year 2000, Swedish feminist Joanna Rytel and the action group Unf**ked Pussy entered the stage during the live broadcast of the Miss Sweden contest. She also wrote an article called “I Will Never Give Birth to a White Man,” for a major Swedish daily, Aftonbladet, in 2004. Rytel explained why she hates white men — they are selfish, exploitative, vain, and sex-crazed — and just to make things clear, she added, “no white men, please… I just puke on them, thank you very much.”
Misandry, the hatred of men, isn’t necessarily less prevalent than misogyny, the hatred of women. The difference is that the former is much more socially acceptable.
If all oppression comes from Western men, it becomes logical to try weakening them as much as possible. If you do, a paradise of peace and equality awaits us at the other side of the rainbow. Well congratulations to Western European women. You’ve succeeded in harassing and ridiculing your own sons into suppressing many of their masculine instincts. To your surprise, you didn’t enter a feminist Nirvana, but paved the way for an unfolding Islamic hell.
It is correct, as feminists claim, that a hyper-feminine society is not as destructive as a hyper-masculine society. The catch with a too soft society is that it is unsustainable. It will get squashed as soon as it is confronted by more traditional, aggressive ones. Instead of “having it all,” Western women risk losing everything. What are liberal feminists going to do when faced with aggressive gang of Muslim youngsters? Burn their bras and throw the pocket edition of the Vagina Monologues at them?
Perhaps women can succeed in turning their men into doormats, but it will be on the cost of doing so to their nation and to their civilization as well. According to Italian American feminist Camille Paglia, “If civilization had been left in female hands, we would still be living in grass huts.” That may be an exaggeration, but male energy is definitely a driving force in any dynamic culture.
Muslim anti-female violence in the West is a symptom of the breakdown of the feminist Utopia. Freedoms need to be enforced by violence or the credible threat of violence, or they are meaningless. Even though women can take steps to protect themselves, the primary responsibility for protection will probably always belong to men. Women will thus only have as much freedom as their men are willing and capable of guaranteeing them. It is a major flaw in many feminist theories that they fail to acknowledge this.
The difference between women’s rights and women’s illusions is defined by a Smith and Wesson, not by a Betty Friedan or a Virginia Wolf.
Writer Lars Hedegaard in Denmark does not buy into the theory that women approve of Muslim immigration out of irrational naivety or ideological conviction. He thinks they simply want it, as he writes in a column entitled “The dream of submission.” He does notice, as I do, that women are more likely than men to support parties that are open for more Muslim immigration.
Why is this, considering that there is hardly a single Muslim majority area in the world where women enjoy the same rights as men? And Hedegaard asks a provocative question: Are women more stupid and less enlightened than men, since they in such great numbers are paving the way for their own submission? He comes up with an equally provocative answer: “When women are paving the way for sharia, this is presumably because women want sharia.” They don’t want freedom because they feel attracted to subservience and subjugation.
The English author Fay Weldon has noted that “For women, there is something sexually very alluring about submission.” And as Hedegaard dryly notes, if submission is what many women seek, the feminized Danish men are boring compared to desert sheikhs who won’t allow you to go outside without permission. Muslims like to point out that there are more women than men in the West who convert to Islam, and this is in fact partly true. Islam means “submission.” Is there something about submission that is more appealing to some women than it is to most men? Do women yield more easily to power?
In a newspaper article about Swedish women converting to Islam, the attraction of the Islamic family life seems to be a common feature among women converts. Several of them state that in Islam, the man is more rational and logical, while the woman is more emotional and caring. This means that the woman should be the one to take care of the children and do the housekeeping, while the man should be the one to work and provide for the family. Many of the women feel that their lives lack a sense of purpose, but Christianity does not seem like a relevant alternative to them.
The fixation with looks in our modern society and the tougher living conditions for women, who are supposed to both have a career and do the housekeeping, play a part, too. Which is curious, considering the fact that it was women themselves, encouraged by modern talk show hostesses such as Oprah Winfrey, who talked about “having it all”; it wasn’t the men. Men know that nobody can “have it all,” you have to give up something to get something. Maybe women have discovered that working life wasn’t all that it was cracked up to be? Men do, after all, universally die years before women all over the world.
The plot of novelist Dan Brown’s Da Vinci Code is that the modern history of Christianity was a big, patriarchal plot to deprive women of the rights they supposedly enjoyed before this, during the age of “the sacred feminine” and the fertility goddesses who were always barefoot and pregnant. But if that’s the case, why is it that women make up the majority of Europe’s churchgoers? Why do women, out of their own free will, seek out these oppressive, patriarchal religions? Maybe French philosopher Ernest Renan was onto something when he called women “the devout sex.” Do women need religion more than men?
Are some feminists simply testing out men’s limits in the hope of finding some new balance between the sexes, or are they testing men to find our which men are strong enough to stand up to their demands, and thus which men can stand up to other men on their behalf? I heard one woman who was an ardent feminist in the 1970s later lament how many families they broke up and destroyed. She was surprised at the reaction, or lack of reaction, from men: “We were horrible. Why didn’t you stop us?”
In psychiatry, female patients are seen more frequently with self-inflicted wounds or self-destructive behaviour than men, who tend to direct their aggression outwards. It is also a well-known fact that many women blame themselves for abusive husbands, and make excuses for their abusers’ behavior. Has the West adopted some of the negative traits of the female psyche? The newly feminized West gets attacked and assaulted by the Arab and Islamic world, and continues to blame itself, while at the same time be fascinated by its abusers. It is thus behaving in the same way as a self-loathing woman towards an abusive man.
Virginia Woolf in her book A Room of One’s Own praises the genius of William Shakespeare: “If ever a human being got his work expressed completely, it was Shakespeare. If ever a mind was incandescent, unimpeded, I thought, turning again to the bookcase, it was Shakespeare’s mind.” “Let me imagine, since facts are so hard to come by, what would have happened had Shakespeare had a wonderfully gifted sister, called Judith, let us say.” “His extraordinarily gifted sister, let us suppose, remained at home. She was as adventurous, as imaginative, as agog to see the world as he was. But she was not sent to school. She had no chance of learning grammar and logic, let alone of reading Horace and Virgil.” She “killed herself one winter’s night and lies buried at some cross–roads where the omnibuses now stop outside the Elephant and Castle.”
Feminists claim that the reason why women haven’t been as numerous in politics and science as men is due to male oppression of women. Some of this is true. But it is not the whole story. Being male means having to prove something, to achieve something, in a greater way than it does for women. In addition to this, the responsibility for child rearing will always fall more heavily on women than on men. A modern society may lessen these restraints, but it will never remove them completely. For these practical reasons, it is unlikely that women will ever be as numerous as men in politics or in the highest level in business.
Christina Hoff Sommers, the author of The War Against Boys, points out that “after almost 40 years of feminist agitation and gender-neutral pronouns, it is still men who are far more likely than women to run for political office, start companies, file for patents, and blow things up. Men continue to tell most of the jokes and write the vast majority of editorials and letters to editors. And — fatal to the dreams of feminists who long for social androgyny — men have hardly budged from their unwillingness to do an equal share of housework or childcare. Moreover, women seem to like manly men.”
She also notes that “One of the least visited memorials in Washington is a waterfront statue commemorating the men who died on the Titanic. Seventy-four percent of the women passengers survived the April 15, 1912, calamity, while 80 percent of the men perished. Why? Because the men followed the principle ‘women and children first.’ “The monument, an 18-foot granite male figure with arms outstretched to the side, was erected by ‘the women of America’ in 1931 to show their gratitude. The inscription reads: “To the brave men who perished in the wreck of the Titanic. [...] They gave their lives that women and children might be saved.”
Simone de Beauvoir famously said, “One is not born, but becomes a woman.” She meant that they should reject all the inducements of nature, society, and conventional morality. Beauvoir condemned marriage and family as a “tragedy” for women, and compared childbearing and nurturing to slavery.
Strangely enough, after decades of feminism, many Western women are now lamenting the fact that Western men hesitate to get married. Here is columnist Molly Watson:
We’re also pretty clued up about why our generation is delaying having children — and it has nothing to do with being failed by employers or health planners. Nor, despite endless newspaper features on the subject, does it have much to do with business women putting careers before babies. In my experience, the root cause of the epidemic lies with a collective failure of nerve among men our age. […] I don’t know a woman of my age whose version of living happily ever after fundamentally hinges on becoming editor, or senior partner, or surgeon, or leading counsel. But faced with a generation of emotionally immature men who seem to view marriage as the last thing they’ll do before they die, we have little option but to wait.
What happened to the slogan “A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle”? I’d just like to remind Ms. Watson that it was in fact the women who started this whole “single is best” culture that now permeates much of the West. Since women initiate most divorces and a divorce can potentially mean financial ruin for a man, it shouldn’t really be too surprising that many men hesitate to get involved at all. As one man put it: “I don’t think I’ll get married again. I’ll just find a woman I don’t like and give her a house.” At the same time, women during the past few decades have made it a lot easier to have a girlfriend without getting married. So women make it riskier to get married and easier to stay unmarried, and then they wonder why men “won’t commit?” Maybe too many women didn’t think all this feminism stuff quite through before jumping on the bandwagon?
The latest wave of radical feminism has severely wounded the family structure of the Western world. It is impossible to raise the birth rates to replacement level before women are valued for raising children, and before men and women are willing to marry in the first place. Human beings are social creatures, not solitary ones. We are created to live with partners. Marriage is not a “conspiracy to oppress women”, it’s the reason why we’re here. And it’s not a religious thing, either. According to strict, atheist Darwinism, the purpose of life is to reproduce.
A study from the United States identified the main barriers to men tying the knot. Heading the list was their ability to get sex without marriage more easily than in the past. The second was that they can enjoy the benefits of having a wife by cohabiting rather than marrying. The report lends weight to remarks by Ross Cameron, the parliamentary secretary to the Minister for Family and Community Services, who chided Australian men, blaming Australia’s looming fertility crisis on men’s commitment phobia. “The principal reason young women say they don’t get around to having children is they can’t find a bloke they like who is willing to commit,” he said. “This commitment aversion in the Australian male is a real problem.”
Barbara Boyle Torrey and Nicholas Eberstadt write about a significant divergence in fertility between Canada and the U.S.: “The levels of Canadian and American long-term trends in age of first marriage, first births, and common-law unions are consistent with the divergence in total fertility rates in the two countries. But the divergence in none of these proximate variables is large enough to explain the much larger divergence in fertility.” “Changing values in the U.S. and Canada may be contributing to the fertility divergence. The stronger notional role of men in U.S. families and the greater religiosity of Americans are positively associated with fertility, and the latter is also a strong predictor of negative attitudes toward abortion. Women in Canada enter common-law unions more often, wait longer than American women to marry, and have children later and less often.”
In Europe, Newsweek writes about how packs of wolves are now making a comeback in regions of Central Europe: “A hundred years ago, a burgeoning, land-hungry population killed off the last of Germany’s wolves.” “Our postcard view of Europe, after all, is of a continent where every scrap of land has long been farmed, fenced off and settled. But the continent of the future may look rather different. “Big parts of Europe will renaturalize,” says Reiner Klingholz, head of the Berlin Institute for Population Development. Bears are back in Austria. In Swiss alpine valleys, farms have been receding and forests are growing back in. In parts of France and Germany, wildcats and ospreys have re-established their range.”
“In Italy, more than 60 percent of the country’s 2.6 million farmers are at least 65 years old. Once they die out, many of their farms will join the 6 million hectares (one third of Italian farmland) that has already been abandoned.” “With the EU alone needing about 1.6 million immigrants a year above its current level to keep the working-age population stable between now and 2050, a much more likely source of migrants would be Europe’s Muslim neighbors, whose young populations are set to almost double in that same time.”
It is numbers like these that have induced Phillip Longman to foresee “the Return of Patriarchy” and proclaim that “conservatives will inherit the Earth:”
“Among states that voted for President George W. Bush in 2004, fertility rates are 12 percent higher than in states that voted for Sen. John Kerry.” “It turns out that Europeans who are most likely to identify themselves as “world citizens” are also those least likely to have children.” “The great difference in fertility rates between secular individualists and religious or cultural conservatives augurs a vast, demographically driven change in modern societies.” “Tomorrow’s children, therefore, will be for the most part descendants of a comparatively narrow and culturally conservative segment of society.”
“In addition to the greater fertility of conservative segments of society, the rollback of the welfare state forced by population aging and decline will give these elements an additional survival advantage.” “People will find that they need more children to insure their golden years, and they will seek to bind their children to them through inculcating traditional religious values.”
This last point is worth dwelling with. The elaborate welfare state model in Western Europe is frequently labelled as “the nanny state,” but perhaps it could also be named “the husband state.” Why? Well, in a traditional society, the role of men and husbands is to physically protect and financially provide for their women. In our modern society, part of this task has simply been “outsourced” to the state, which helps explain why women in general give a disproportionate support to high taxation and pro-welfare state parties. The state has simply become a substitute husband, upheld by taxation of their ex-husbands.
It should be mentioned that if this welfare state should for some reason cease to function, for instance due to economic and security pressures caused by Muslim immigration, Western women will suddenly discover that they are not quite as independent from men as they like to think. In this case, it is conceivable that we will se a return to the modern traditional “provide and protect” masculinity, as people, and women in particular, will need the support of the nuclear and extended family to manage.
Another issue is that although countries such as Norway and Sweden like to portray themselves as havens of gender equality, I have heard visitors to these countries comment that the sexes are probably further apart here than anywhere else in the world. And I readily believe that. Radical feminism has bred suspicion and hostility, not cooperation. And what’s more, it has no in any way eradicated the basic sexual attraction between feminine women and masculine men. If people do not find this in their own country, they travel to another country or culture to find it, which in our age of globalization is easier than ever. A striking number of Scandinavian men find their wives in East Asia, Latin America or other nations with a more traditional view of femininity, and a number of women find partners from more conservative countries, too. Not everyone, of course, but the trend is unmistakable and significant. Scandinavians celebrate “gender equality,” and travel to the other side of the world to find somebody actually worth marrying.
To sum it up, it must be said that radical feminism has been one of the most important causes of the current weakness of Western civilization, both culturally and demographically. Feminists, often with a Marxist world view, have been a crucial component in establishing the suffocating public censorship of Political Correctness in Western nations. They have also severely weakened the Western family structure, and contributed to making the West too soft and self-loathing to deal with aggression from Muslims.
Although feminism may have strayed away into extremism, that does not mean that all of its ideas are wrong. The women’s movement will make lasting changes. Women have occupied positions considered unthinkable only a few decades ago. Some things are irreversible.
Women pretty much run men’s private lives. Marriage used to be a trade: Female nurturing and support for male financial and social security. In a modern world, women may not need men’s financial support quite as much as they did before, while men need women’s emotional support just as much as we have always done. The balance of power has changed in favor of women, although this situation may not last forever. This does not have to be bad. Women still want a partner. But it requires men to be more focused on doing their best.
A study by scientists at the University of Copenhagen concludes that divorce is closely linked to poor health, especially among men. The research indicates that the death rate for single or divorced males aged 40-50 is twice as high as for other groups. The research has taken into account whether there are other factors that could lead to an early death — such as a mental illness and having grown up under poor social conditions. “Considering the high amount of children growing up in broken homes we do believe that the study is very relevant. “It proves that divorce can have a serious consequence,” and that we may need a prevention strategy. John Aasted Halse, psychologist and author of numerous books about divorce, agrees.
The apparent contradiction between female dominance on the micro level and male dominance on the macro level cannot be easily explained within the context of a “weaker/stronger sex”. I will postulate that being male first of all is some kind of nervous energy, something you need to prove. This will have both positive and negative results. Male numerical dominance in science and politics, as well as in crime and war, is linked to this. Women do not have this urge to prove themselves as much as men do. In some ways, this is a strength. Hence I think the terms “The Restless Sex” for men and “The Self-Contained Sex” for women are more appropriate and explain the differences better.
Daniel Pipes keeps saying that the answer to radical Islam is moderate Islam. There may not be any such thing as a moderate Islam, but there just might be a moderate feminism, and a mature masculinity to match it. In the book Manliness, Harvey C. Mansfield offers what he calls a modest defense of manliness. As he says, “Manliness, however, seems to be about fifty-fifty good and bad.” Manliness can be noble and heroic, like the men on the Titanic who sacrificed their lives for “women and children first,” but it can also be foolish, stubborn, and violent. Many men will find it offensive to hear that Islamic violence and honor killings have anything to do with masculinity, but it does. Islam is a compressed version of all the darkest aspects of masculinity. We should reject it. Men, too, lose their freedom to think and say what they want in Islam, not just women.However, even a moderate version of feminism could prove lethal to Islam. Islam survives on the extreme subjugation of women. Deprived of this, it will suffocate and die. It is true that the West still hasn’t found the formula for the perfect balance between men and women in the 21st century, but at least we are working on the issue. Islam is stuck in the 7th century. Some men lament the loss of a sense of masculinity in a modern world. Perhaps a meaningful one could be to make sure that our sisters and daughters grow up in a world where they have the right to education and a free life, and protect them against Islamic barbarism. It’s going to be needed.
Fjordman is a noted Norwegian blogger who has written for many conservative web sites. He used to have his own Fjordman Blog in the past, but it is no longer active.