Are women as good as men?

Dear Hannah,

At this point it can very safely be said that feminism, from its inception, was a bait-and-switch.   We know this because from the beginning feminists were telling us they were as good as men; and now that we've let them run everything they're telling us that they aren't.

The whole idea of a woman entering the work force was that she was equally efficient doing a man's job, and to our surprise women have now admitted they don't know the meaning of efficiency.  Nobody warned us, when women started working in jobs traditionally held by men, not only that we would be forced to hire women for jobs we would rather have a man for, but that we would continue to hire her even when she wasn't working.  This is the argument used by even Republicans for mandatory paid maternity leave: not that a woman in a man's position can do a man's job, but that to make her do what's expected of a man is cruel (which in this case it is).  The burden, of course, if not borne by a willing employer (which I'm okay with), is borne by an unwilling employer or a taxpayer (which I'm not); and when paid by a country already deeply in debt, ultimately funded by people who haven't even had a say in the matter, because they haven't even begun to exist.

Aside from her insisting that the sexes are immutably different, another thing I love about Virginia Woolf is her advising great writers to be childless.  The whole point of A Room of One's Own, in fact, may be boiled down to the fact that if a woman wants to get anything done she had better do it without children around; and preferably without having children at all.  Schopenhauer hated women, but his essay On Silence proves that even misogynists and feminists find some kind of agreement here.  If you want to write a book, both agree you have to be left alone.  If you want to do whatever you want, you should probably avoid having children -- an option which feminists claim contraception gives them, but which they refuse to take advantage of.  They prefer to take advantage of men instead.

The whole concept of reason itself may be boiled down to the issue of choice, in fact; another idea, alongside "efficiency," about which feminists have no clue.  They never realized that the brains God gave us come along with desires, and the finite nature of our bodies necessitates picking some desires and forgetting about others.  Virginia Woolf knew that if you wanted to be a great writer like George Eliot and the Brontes and Jane Austen, you would probably have to go childless like they did.  The modern feminist wants to be a writer and have children, but because she didn't realize the she was making a decision by having children, she wants to force you to take care of her children so she can write.  What a moron.

The problem (aside from letting women act like children) is we've convinced ourselves, almost getting the cart before the horse, that women are as good as men without first asking what she's good for.  And the problem goes deeper than feminism.  It goes back to our deepest theology; that somewhere out there exists a good man and a bad man, and that even beyond these lies a being we know as a good God.  Perhaps owing most to the left-sided thinking of the male brain, the abstraction known as goodness has permeated our thinking without making us wonder, first and foremost, if anyone can really be good for everything.  The answer is that we can't.  The very fact of being an individual means that there are things that you do and things that you don't; that there are things that you can and things that you can't; and going deeper than this, to the depths of your uniqueness and the core of what makes you really you, there are things that you will and things that you won't.

Where women fit into this is easily explained.  Feminists have decided that women are equally good as men; and because of the abstraction of goodness and their love of an equally abstract equality, they've terrorized us into agreeing with them, when the truth is that each woman will not only have to be assessed individually, but that we must judge her for what she can do.  If she's beautiful, then we love her for the way she makes us feel.  If she's good at business, then we want her for business.  If she's a great mother, then we love her for what she does with our children.  If she's a homemaker, then we love her for what she does with our home.  If she's a communist or a traitor, then we hate her for threatening our country.  If she's selfish and irresponsible, then we dislike her for having other men's children and then demanding that we pay for them.

Every woman, in the end, is such a mixture of positives and negatives that we need the freedom to say whether we like them or need them or want them.  It's the same freedom we give women to think about men.  And feminism, bypassing all of this in favor of an unfair abstraction, demands almost the opposite: that we not only say something men would never believe about men -- that they are all equally good as women in general -- but that we would never ask ourselves what a woman is good for.

If feminists were good self-respecting thinkers, as Joan Didion once wrote in her essay On Self-Respect, they would know what a choice means and live with their choices.  If they were good citizens, they would respect the property of their neighbors and rely on their husbands instead.  If they and men were equally good workers, women would never demand to be paid extra for not working.  The fact that they've chosen the opposite paths while claiming an unfair back-patting proves that feminists aren't good at any of these.  And it's men's fault because in the first place we have given them the wrong idea of goodness, and then, without applying any kind of judgment, we agreed that women were equally good.

Your father,

PS: Coming at this issue from another perspective, Pope Francis once said he knew many good Communists, when the truth is that there aren't any good Communists.  There are nice men with good intentions who support horrible things.  But men are not only intentions.  They are also the sum of their effects and possibilities; and like the Catholics before Francis were so used to saying, prudence, the knowledge of man and the hatred of anything as historically horrible as communism was just as important as whether you were chaste.  Now we believe that anyone can be "good" so long as he's nice.  We've forgotten that con-men are nice, and that the devastating things known as cowardice and naivety can be easily mistaken for kindness.  There is only One who is good -- that is, God, is something the Catholics should have taken more literally. But instead they pretended men can be good when their goodness can land you in a gulag.