October 9, 2014

ASHE SCHOW: Feminist hysteria is causing the infantilization of women.

This need to protect women from even reading or hearing about the ills of society has become so pervasive that some colleges are including “trigger warnings” on class syllabi to caution students that they might be offended or feel uncomfortable about some of the subject matter.

Even more detrimental to women than telling them words can hurt is the recent feminist trend of giving them mixed signals about sexuality. Modern feminists are arguing that it is “slut-shaming” to suggest that women should avoid drunken sex, but they also are pushing colleges to adopt a definition of rape in which women under the heavy influence of alcohol cannot give consent.

The perceived need to coddle women is not exclusive to liberals. In July, Rep. Renee Ellmers, R-N.C., told an audience of women that her male colleagues needed to bring the discussion “down to a woman’s level.” She meant that Republican men need to learn how to relate to women, but the implication was that women can’t understand things the way men can.

There are even bills in Congress codifying the new belief that women are delicate flowers who need help to succeed in this terrible, terrible country. These include equal-pay bills that don’t actually reduce the mythical wage gap but do serve to tell women they need help to become equal to menfolk; campus sex assault bills that tell women they can’t handle alcohol and that if they regret a drunken hookup they have been raped; and a slew of abortion bills claiming the procedure is about “women’s health.” . . .

This shift toward telling women they need help at every stage of their lives (remember the Obama campaign’s “Life of Julia”?) might raise funds for feminist causes or gain votes for politicians, but it’s not empowering. It’s infantilizing.

Women are fragile flowers who must be protected from all the stuff men deal with every day. Because equality!

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