The Imam wasn’t lying….

The Imam to whom I refer is the one who, when he had a group of Massachusetts public school children before him, riffed creatively (or so it seemed) about the high status women have in Islam.  It turns out that he wasn’t lying.  Women are entirely honored in Islam.  It’s just that we, in the West, fail to understand how a man should truly honor is wife.  I urge you to watch every minute of this video, and then to send it, politely, to everyone you know.

Hat tip:  The Corner

Women in Iran

If you have a strong stomach, read this horrific report about two women in Iran who were convicted of adultery and sentenced to death by stoning.  This is entirely in keeping with the point I made in my article at AT that totalitarian states view sex, not as a private matter, but as a matter of state control — hence the fact that Iran makes it a capital crime to violate rules about adultery and homosexuality.

Should I also mention here that Iran, with the Obama administration’s full approval, now serves on the U.N. Commission for Women’s Rights.  Apparently this means the theoretical right, if your lawyer begs enough, to be hanged, rather than stoned, for allegedly having had sex with a man other than ones husband.

Everything you needed to know about the Dems, run through the Kagan filter

Kim Priestap, who blogs at Up North Mommy, got an impassioned email from the Democratic Party, raving about Elena Kagan.  Does it rave about her brains?  No (although it mentions as an aside that she’s “among the best legal minds this country has to offer,” which is a depressing comment about legal minds in America).  Her legal expertise?  No.  Her judicial experience?  No (because there is none, no matter how one puffs up her limited management experience and some government work).  Her looks?  No, no and no.

Instead, the email is very clear about Kagan’s single most important virtue, along with a little subsidiary fillip to add to the Progressive excitement:  She’s a woman and, even better, she’s almost black because she once worked for a black man.

Read the following and tell me if the whole point of the Democratic euphoria isn’t that, after being the first female Harvard Law School dean, and the first female Solicitor General, she’s poised to become the third female Supreme Court justice sitting on the court, and one who is black by association, thereby raising both the female and black liberal quota on the Supreme Court:

Have you been watching the hearings? The nomination of a Supreme Court justice is a special time in Washington, DC. The air tastes different — it buzzes with an electricity even the humidity can’t conquer — and even more so this time.

Elena Kagan’s nomination is special. It took us almost 200 years as a country to get the first woman on the Supreme Court, but now we’re on a roll! If Elena Kagan is confirmed, for the first time, we’ll have three women serving together. We’re still a far cry from parity, but we cannot allow the perfect to become the enemy of the good. We’re making progress, and Elena Kagan is great progress.

Over the past three days of hearings, she has conducted herself with poise, grace, rigor, and humor. She has won praise from liberals and conservatives — prior to her nomination and since. It’s no easy feat to become the first female dean of Harvard Law School and the first female to serve as solicitor general. Her illustrious resume also includes periods as associate White House counsel and deputy policy director under President Bill Clinton, as a teacher at the University of Chicago Law School, and as a law clerk for Justice Thurgood Marshall.

Lend your name to help us show that the American people back Elena Kagan’s nomination.

Let there be no doubt: She earned this nomination. It’s not simply because she’s a woman, or because she’s among the best legal minds this country has to offer. I know firsthand the strength of Elena’s character and am certain she is the best choice.

The Supreme Court nomination process, like almost any political contest, is like a food fight where the nominee does his or her best to stay clean and dry while everyone else in the room slings Sloppy Joes. I’ve watched this before (recently) and there’s nothing the Republicans won’t do to take down a nominee chosen by a president they’ve vowed to obstruct at all costs.

Republicans are attacking her credibility, her credentials, and her character. They’ve become particularly focused on her work as a clerk for Justice Marshall, seemingly maligning his long and respected service to our country. As chief counsel to the NAACP, Justice Marshall argued the case of Brown v Board of Education. Later he would become the first African American to serve as solicitor general and the first African American to serve as a justice of the Supreme Court. We would be better off with more justices like Marshall, and Kagan’s work for him should be a feather in her cap, not a thorn in her side right now.

The other side is grabbing at straws, with nothing to support their groundless accusations, but it doesn’t stop the attacks. The Democratic Party is pushing back to ensure that this incredible woman gets a fair hearing, but we must also show that public support for Kagan is overwhelming.

Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony are rolling in their graves.  I think Martin Luther King is also starting to wiggle around in there.  This is not what they envisioned when they campaigned for equal rights for women, or demanded that people be measured, not by the color of their skin or bra size, but by the content of their character.  These trailblazers wanted women and blacks to enjoy full inalienable, constitutional, and legal rights in America.  For women and minorities to be valued just as numbers on some quota list is heartbreaking and as dehumanizing in its own way as the ancient status quo.

I have nothing more to say.

Why Obama Wants You to “Turn On, Tune Out, and Drop Out” — by Guest Blogger Robin of Berkeley

To:  American Citizens
From:  Your Government
Date:  Today

It has come to our attention that citizens on your side of the aisle (“WN’s”, aka Wing Nuts) are doing a lot of talking.  What in the world are you gabbing about?

Talk Radio, talking amongst yourselves, chatting on the Internet.   What is with you people?  Haven’t you ever heard of:   “Turn on, Tune in, and Drop Out?”

This government feels that all this talking is in direct violation of the First Amendment.  Regulations Czar Cass Sunstein is working out the details.

In the meantime,  your government is issuing the following directive regarding inappropriate conversation topics.    Because we are the most transparent government in the history of humankind, we will also include a comprehensive list of acceptable topics.

Unacceptable Topics:

1. Radical Islam:

Why are you WN’s making a big fuss about Islam?  Muslims are conservative, religious people with big families.  Aren’t they just like Christians, only their wives aren’t as hot?

President Obama is working night and day to befriend our Muslim neighbors.  In fact, he may or may not be one of them.

Didn’t you people ever listen to Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood?  Remember a stranger is just a friend you haven’t met yet.

Your judging and criticizing our new friends’ lifestyle is not acceptable in any way, shape or form.   Thus, we are requiring the following new terminology, effective immediately:

“Jihad” — instead please use the term, “religious freedom.”

“Honor killings” — “family values”

“Terrorists” — “freedom fighters”

“Clitoridectomies” — “cosmetic surgery”

2.  Undocumented Workers:

Again, you WN’s are a bunch of sourpusses.  What is wrong with having a bunch more pals from South of the Border?  You act like some of them are drug runners, rapists, kidnappers, and thieves.

Didn’t you people learn to share as children?  The Obama Administration has simply embraced what your mom and dad taught.  We want you to share your emergency rooms, wages,  public schools, and health care with these new friends.

3.  President Obama:

Again, all these questions:  Where was Obama born?  Were his parents Communists?  Where are his school records?  Is he a Muslim?  Why doesn’t he like America?  What are his ties to domestic terrorist Bill Ayers?

Blah, blah, blah.  Yada, yada, yada.  All you need to know is this:  He’s black.  He’s cool.  He dances, he parties, and he has amazing pecs.   And, most importantly, he is not George W. Bush.

This information satisfies liberals — why not you?

4.  The Czars:

Yes it’s true that President Obama has appointed over 30 (sorry, we’ve lost count) Czars.  No, they are not vetted by Congress.   Yes, many appear to be card-carrying socialists or recent discharges from a psych ward.

However, this secret cadre of Czars is absolutely essential to this administration’s agenda.  How in the world can the Democrats radically transform America if you busybodies are all up in their business?

5.  Criticism of Congress:

Public approval of Congress keeps reaching new lows.  Why all this distrust?   When there was a Republican government,  any and all attacks,  demonstrations, and ambushes were necessary.

But this is a Democratic government.  We are the good guys.  When the Democrats are in office, the country can relax.  Leave the driving to us, dude, and take a chill pill.

6.The Mainstream Media:

You people have objected loudly to the MSM’s  swooning over Obama.  Aren’t you being a tad unfair?

Yes it’s true that reporters have been head over heels for Barack.  But these reporters are living, breathing human beings.  Don’t they have needs and desires like any other person?

7.  Misogyny on the Left:

Some of you keep criticizing the Left’s bad treatment of women.     Yes, it’s true that it’s been open season on women, like objectifying Sarah Palin and abusing Michelle Malkin.  True, the Left is not known for giving women any respect.

I hate to break the news to you, ladies.  But liberals don’t give a whit about sexism.  The only “ism” that’s making headlines is racism.

Sexism is so 1970’s.

8.  Black on White (and Asian) Crime:

Yes the statistics are alarming.  But that’s only if you actually read them and publicize them.

True, in San Francisco, 85% of the strong arm robberies are blacks against Asians.   And yes, there have been reports that blacks murder whites at 50 times the rate of the reverse.   There were over a million violent black on white crimes in 1992, compared to over 100,000 white on black crimes.

And we’ll concede that the gang culture, enabled by liberalism, glorifies violence toward others, particularly police and women.    Of course, it’s true that liberal attitudes have so infected the schools and the courts that the perps barely get a slap on the wrist.

But let me make one thing perfectly clear:  this is an unacceptable topic.   Why?  I think you know why by now, you racist.

Acceptable Topics

There are many topics that all citizens are free to discuss at will.

George W. Bush — especially his association to the Prince of Darkness.

Sarah Palin — particularly how crazy she is.

Israel — as long as words like “occupier” and “apartheid” are used.

Tea Parties — especially ties to Neo Nazis and the KKK.

Sincerely,

Your Government

Robin is a licensed psychotherapist and a recovering liberal in Berkeley.   She has written numerous articles for American Thinker.  You can send her an email at robinofberkeley@hotmail.com.

Another revolting manifestation of Islam’s obsession with sex

One of the defining features of Islam is its obsession with sex.  Every rule regarding women is based upon a driving need to control their sexuality.  They are married off as children, sequestered, dressed in clothes that rob them of any hint of femininity, deprived of any opportunities to function outside the reproductive sphere, and fearfully abused, with stonings, hangings, beheadings and beatings if they transgress in any way Islamic rules regarding their sexual or even merely feminine behavior.

A large part of the Islamic world’s hatred for America specifically, and the West generally, is premised upon the fact that the West gives women sexual freedom.  And by sexual freedom, I don’t simply mean the freedom to have sex.  I mean the freedom to be feminine in public.

The fearful degradation directed at women has two extremely ugly manifestations.  The first is pedophilia, and the second is an obsession with pornography.  (You’ll recall that both the 9/11 and Fort Hood terrorists spent their last days on earth visiting strip clubs.)

Now, word is coming out of Afghanistan that an Af/Pak warlord, both to feed his lust (which includes both pedophilia and rape) and to fund his war chest, arranged to have local women raped, with the rapes filmed and distributed for profit.  When word leaked out that he was involved, he responded by murdering the participants, both the men who carried out the raping and filming, and the innocent young girls who were brutalized.  He also destroyed all the videos, or so he thought.  In fact, a video landed in the hands of one Imam who actually has a conscience and prepared a video speaking out against these loathsome moral transgressions.  Author Brad Thor got a hold of the video, and you can now read the whole sordid story and see the video at The Jawa Report.  I should warn you that the video is very graphic, and that’s despite the fact that much of it is edited out.

Because the video and the story behind it so perfectly illustrate the dangerous pathologies that drive radical Islam, Rusty would like his post to go viral.  (He actually asked that the video go viral, but I think his post is a sufficiently important backdrop that you really shouldn’t have one without the other.)  So, I’m doing my bit, and I hope that you do yours.

Cross-posted at Right Wing News

Others are noting Obama’s weird relationship with women

With the trigger being Obama’s obsession with niqabs and hijabs, I did a lengthy post about my belief that Obama fundamentally does not like women.  He depends on strong women (his wife, Valerie Jarrett), but he doesn’t like them.  In fact, I’m willing to bet that his dependence on them only increases that dislike.  I’ll add here that male narcissists are often the product of genuinely unloving mothers and that a strong dislike for women is an intregral part of their make-up.  (And consider how frequently Obama’s mother abandoned him throughout his young life, when she wasn’t dragging him around like an old anchor.)

Others are catching on to Obama’s fraught relationship with women.  The trigger isn’t anything so deep as his desire to see women veiled.  Instead, it’s those all male golf courses.  Obama’s desire to get his recreation in all male environments (golf, basketball, etc.) has Bonnie Erbe, at U.S. News and World Reports, thinking:

Whether it was his treatment of Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail (as in his condescending remark that she was “likeable enough”) or his clearly career-oriented mate who has been toned down and remorphed into a Stepford Wife, I just don’t get the impression this man is comfortable with women. Nor do I believe he cares about them beyond needing women’s votes. It’s an act and a thoroughly see-through, amateur one at that.

As you know, I was all over that condescending remark to Hillary, but I saw it more as a sign of the man’s arrogance, than his innate misogyny.  Put it together with the other stuff, though, and Erbe may well be on to something.

One more thing:  Erbe can’t resist in her post being nasty about the old Southern politician Jesse Helms.  But I think there’s a difference between, on the one hand, old guys who never got it with women’s lib, but who still fundamentally liked women (and I don’t think Helms ever showed dislike for women) and, on the other hand, a true misogynist, who really hates women at a fundamental level that goes far beyond societal beliefs about women’s roles.

There’s a deeper meaning to Michelle’s appalling fashion sense

I need help from you guys developing a thought.  The thought started with this picture of Michelle Obama in a deep-veed, fluffy blouse; a saggy sweater; a bondage belt; and the gypsy skirt from hell:

Michelle Obama bondage BeltAside from the fact that the picture pretty much puts the lie forever to the media’s desparate attempt to liken Michelle to Jacquie O, I think Michelle’s completely bewildered clothing speaks to something deeper about what society’s Leftist grip does to women’s self image.

I’m thinking about the difference between elegance and femininity, as opposed to a sort of trashy, hard-edged “feminism” that equates female sexuality, which can be beautiful and graceful, with Hustler-esque sex.  There’s definitely been a trend in the past years that cheapens, rather than elevates, women, and this trend has marched hand-in-hand with the radicalization of feminism.

Recall, if you will, that feminism was originally sold as a way to ensure that women got equal rights under the law and equal opportunities.  It’s now morphed into some shrill Leftist monster that says women should have sex like a porn star, be able to cry rape at will, get opportunities denied to men, ignore the plight of their truly oppressed sisters around the world, forgive rapists as long as they’re “good” presidents, get more than equal pay for unequal work, etc.  At precisely the same time women stopped being women and started being these weird Frankenstein monsters, the concept of attractiveness and feminity in clothing vanished — something I’ve bemoaned my entire adult life.

In other words, I think this picture speaks to something larger about the way women, for all their greater earning power and societal presence, have lost something over the last 30 years.

I know I’m old-fashioned, and getting more so with every passing day, but I’m pretty sure “viva la difference” didn’t mean you guys look like effete metrosexuals and we gals look like bondage vixens.

Rapist praised for converting to Islam, because he’ll now respect women

There is no bliss inherent in the ignorance displayed by one judge in England:

A judge lambasted a rapist for claiming his victim was a liar – then commended him for becoming a muslim.

Judge Anthony Goldstaub QC sentenced Stuart Wood for seven years for the attack, then told him: ‘You have turned to Islam and this promises well for your future, particularly as you are now an adherent of a religion which respects women and self-discipline.’

Apparently Goldstaub has never heard of honor killings, burkhas, systematic rapes of non-Muslim women, the whole Saudi/Taliban package (unveiled girls being forced to die in burning buildings, chronic house arrest, being beaten on the street for showing any flesh), etc.  To characterize Islam as a religion that respects women, when 90% of Islam’s energy is directed to the subjugation of women is such a travesty that it defies words.  It’s impossible to tell if the judge was motivated by ignorance or malice in making that kind of statement.

I’ll close this short post with a quote from my cousin, the prison chaplain, with his take on prison conversions to Islam:

It is not a contradiction to be a Muslim and a murderer, even a mass murderer. That is one reason why criminals “convert” to Islam in prison. They don’t convert at all; they similarly remain the angry judgmental vicious beings they always have been. They simply add “religious” diatribes to their personal invective. Islam does not inspire a crisis of conscience, just inspirations to outrage.

Obama again celebrates putting women in hijabs and niqabs *UPDATED*

I’m noticing an interesting pattern in Obama’s Muslim speeches.  He thinks it’s a very good thing for women to cover up.  In his Cairo speech, he made that point, not once, not twice, but three times.  As I caught in the post I wrote at the time, he said:

Moreover, freedom in America is indivisible from the freedom to practice one’s religion. That is why there is a mosque in every state in our union, and over 1,200 mosques within our borders. That’s why the United States government has gone to court to protect the right of women and girls to wear the hijab and to punish those who would deny it. (Applause.)

[snip]

Likewise, it is important for Western countries to avoid impeding Muslim citizens from practicing religion as they see fit — for instance, by dictating what clothes a Muslim woman should wear. We can’t disguise hostility towards any religion behind the pretence of liberalism.

[snip]

The sixth issue — the sixth issue that I want to address is women’s rights. (Applause.) I know –- I know — and you can tell from this audience, that there is a healthy debate about this issue. I reject the view of some in the West that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal, but I do believe that a woman who is denied an education is denied equality.

That obsession with women’s attire might have been aberrant but for the fact that, at tonight’s White House Ramadan celebration, Obama brought it up again (emphasis mine):

The president paid special tribute to Kareem Khan, who “made the ultimate sacrifice” when he died serving in Iraq, Nashala Hearn, who won the right to wear a hijab in school, Bilqis Abdul-Qaadir, who holds the record for the most points scored by a high school basketball player in Massachusetts, and Muhammad Ali, who – though he couldn’t attend – is “a man of quiet dignity and grace and continues to fight for what he believes.”

Why, oh why, is Obama so impressed with Muslim women wrapping their heads?  His he just part of the same trendy Left wing cadre that thinks head coverings are a cool fashion statement by which enlightened Islamic feminists thumb their nose at men?  Naomi Wolf, American “feminist” and nutcase, believes this to be so:

The West interprets veiling as repression of women and suppression of their sexuality. But when I travelled in Muslim countries and was invited to join a discussion in women-only settings within Muslim homes, I learned that Muslim attitudes toward women’s appearance and sexuality are not rooted in repression, but in a strong sense of public versus private, of what is due to God and what is due to one’s husband. It is not that Islam suppresses sexuality, but that it embodies a strongly developed sense of its appropriate channelling – toward marriage, the bonds that sustain family life, and the attachment that secures a home.

Outside the walls of the typical Muslim households that I visited in Morocco, Jordan, and Egypt, all was demureness and propriety. But inside, women were as interested in allure, seduction and pleasure as women anywhere in the world.

At home, in the context of marital intimacy, Victoria’s Secret, elegant fashion and skin care lotions abounded. The bridal videos that I was shown, with the sensuous dancing that the bride learns as part of what makes her a wonderful wife, and which she proudly displays for her bridegroom, suggested that sensuality was not alien to Muslim women. Rather, pleasure and sexuality, both male and female, should not be displayed promiscuously – and possibly destructively – for all to see.

Wolf would benefit from reading Phyllis Chesler’s response to her inane article, in which Chesler emphasizes the reality for the vast majority of those Muslim woman wrapped up in movable tents:

Most Muslim girls and women are not given a choice about wearing the chador, burqa, abaya, niqab, jilbab, or hijab (headscarf), and those who resist are beaten, threatened with death, arrested, caned or lashed, jailed, or honor murdered by their own families. Is Wolfe thoroughly unfamiliar with the news coming out of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Sudan on these very subjects? Has she forgotten the tragic, fiery deaths of those schoolgirls in Saudi Arabia who, in trying to flee their burning schoolhouse, were improperly veiled and who were beaten back by the all-powerful Saudi Morality Police?

Most Muslim girls and women are impoverished and wear rags, not expensive Western clothing beneath their coverings. Only the pampered, super-controlled, often isolated, and uber-materialistic daughters of wealth, mainly in the Gulf states, but also among the ruling classes in the Islamic world, match Wolf’s portrait of well kept courtesan-wives.

Being veiled and obedient does not save a Muslim girl or woman from being incested, battered, stalked, gang-raped, or maritally raped nor does it stop her husband from taking multiple wives and girlfriends or from frequenting brothels. A fully “covered” girl-child, anywhere between the ages of 10-15, may still be forced into an arranged marriage, perhaps with her first cousin, perhaps with a man old enough to be her grandfather, and she is not allowed to leave him, not even if he beats her black and blue every single day.

So does Obama side with Wolf or does he understand the reality that Chesler articulates?

Or are we looking in the wrong place altogether when it comes to Obama’s hijab obsession.  Maybe he’s just dreaming that, one day, he can replace this angry face:

Michelle

With this, all signs of anger neatly hidden away:

Burqa

UPDATE: To those who I’m mocking Michelle for being ugly, I’m not.   I don’t think she’s the raving beauty the MSM would have us believe, but there’s nothing wrong with how she looks. It’s the anger that’s in her face whenever she’s not actively smiling. That is one very, very angry woman.  That can’t be a nice thing in a marriage.  A burqa wouldn’t make the anger go away, but you wouldn’t have to see it all the time.  I’ve updated the captions for the photos a bit to show that my emphasis is on personality, not looks.

Real men — and the babyish guys in Hollywood movies

As you all know, over the years I’ve been fascinated by male and female roles in America.  As the mother of a very manly little 10 year old, I take male role models in this culture very seriously.  I’ve therefore noticed (and commented upon) the way in which our society consigns boys to perpetual adolescence.  Just walk down the streets, and you’ll see teen girls dressed like hookers (tight, skimpy clothes) and teen boys dressed like babies (backwards hats, falling down pants, unlaced shoes).

Hollywood is an important part of the way in which American man are infantilized.  I’ve written about this subject twice at American ThinkerIn one article, I looked at two movies with two very different messages about men:  Brokeback Mountain and The Lion, The Witch and the WardrobeIn the other, written during the primaries, I looked at manliness in pop culture generally and in the primaries specifically.

If you’ll pardon me quoting myself, in my article from the primaries, I looked back on movie males during Hollywood’s golden era and compared them to our current crop of stars:

Any analysis of American pop culture has to start in Hollywood.  If we enter the Wayback Machine, we can see that, before and during World War II, Hollywood’s male stars were grown-ups (at least on the screen).  There was nothing immature or adolescent in the screen presence of such great stars as Clark Gable, John Wayne, Humphrey Bogart, Joseph Cotten, Joel McCrea, or Walter Pidgeon, to name but a few.  These were men’s men, with strong faces and deep voices.

When the war started, the most boyish of Hollywood’s hot stars, Jimmy Stewart, ditched Hollywood entirely to serve in the war himself, which he did with extraordinary distinctionMickey Rooney, another boyish actor, also did his bit.  Nor were these two alone in abandoning the world of pretend war on the silver screen in order actually to participate in the real war.  Clark Gable, Henry Fonda, William Holden, Gene Autry, Robert Montgomery, David Niven, and a host of others enlisted.  (Ronald Reagan did too, but a hearing problem, combined with the military’s pressing need for morale boosting films, kept him on the home front, something that dogged him politically in later years.)

Today’s Hollywood stars, even when they take on testosterone packed action roles, never seem to rise above boyishness.  Go ahead – take a look at modern such screen luminaries as Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, Orlando Bloom, or Ben Affleck.  All of them are distinguished by their chipmunk cheeks and teen heartthrob attractiveness.  The same holds true for the older, post-adolescent actors.  Whether you’re watching an increasingly wrinkled, although still quite charming, Hugh Grant; Tom Cruise with his shark-like grin;  or a goofy Adam Sandler, they all get by playing men who, for the bulk of any given movie, can barely seem to grow up.  Even George Clooney, who boasts old-fashioned silver hair and a gravely voice, shies away from emotionally adult roles, both on and off the screen.  With this type of competition, it’s small surprise that Daniel Craig has proven to be such a popular James Bond.  While his physical attractions elude me, there’s no doubt that he’s the first craggy-cheeked man to play James Bond since Sean Connery made the role.

I’m not the only one paying attention to this trend.  At Pajamas Media, Andrew Klavan has also noticed the perpetual state of immaturity that characterizes guys in way too many movies:

The guys are all children whose manhood consists exclusively in hell-raising.  The women are either fun-loving party girls or grim, death-of-pleasure wife/mommies who seem ever ready to take their little menchildren by the ears and force them to wash the dishes while they stand by wagging their fingers.  These dames remind me of  a wonderful line in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Tender is the Night about “the American woman, aroused”  whose “clean-sweeping irrational temper… had broken the moral back of a race and made a nursery out of a continent.”

A lot of critics get all huffy about this depiction of the sexes – read the silly little fellow who wrote the review in the New York Times by way of example.  The standard line seems to be to blame it all on childish filmmakers pandering to adolescent audiences.  But you know what?  I suspect a lot of it is simple realism.  More and more often I meet young guys just like this:  overgrown kids who are their grim wives’ poodles.  They sheepishly talk about getting a “pink pass,” or a “kitchen pass,” before they can leave the house.  They can’t do this or that because their wives don’t like it.  They “share” household and child-rearing tasks equally – which isn’t really equal at all because they don’t care about a clean house or a well-reared child anywhere near as much as their wives do.  In short, each one seems set to spend his life taking orders from a perpetually dissatisfied Mrs. who sounds to me – forgive me but just speaking in all honesty – like a bloody shrike.  Who can blame these poor shnooks if they go out and get drunk or laid or just plain divorced?

It’s easy just to pass this off as meaningless pop culture, but there’s something deeper going on.  Our culture is becoming feminized.  Women now make up the majority of college graduates, and one could easily call this recession the “men’s recession,” since they’re the ones who have been hardest hit.  That hit will resonate in the home.  While Mom is still going out and earning a living, Dad sits there, unemployed and unemployable.

I’m not sure what can be done about this problem.  I’m certainly not advocating a return to some troglodyte time of brutal cave men and repressed women.  We don’t need to live as they do in Saudi Arabia.  But the pendulum has swung to far and it would be good for American society if it stopped swinging so wildly in the feminine directing and started trending back to a happy-ish medium.

PC strikes again, weakening the British military

When my mother was liberated from concentation camp in Indonesia at the end of WWII, she found herself facing another threat:  the native Indonesians were rising up against the colonial Dutch.  For them, killing the sick, starved Dutch ex-POWs, all still clustered in the camps pending repatriation, was like shooting fish in a barrel.  Relief came in the form of the Gurkhas.  My mom still remembers these fearless fighters hiding in bug/reptile infested ditches outside the camps, armed (literally) to the teeth with knives and other weapons.  Within days, the Indonesian attacks against those pathetic ex-prisoners stopped.

Don’t expect the Gurkhas to be able to help out much longer, though.  PC has struck the Gurkhas and the British government, as a preemptive strike, has demanded that Gurkha women be allowed to join the regiments, despite the fact that they cannot meet the standards:

Junior defence minister Derek Twigg revealed last year that the Army would recruit female Gurkhas from 2009, but gave no details.

[snip]

Half the Army’s 3,400 Gurkhas are infantry soldiers in the Royal Gurkha Rifles, and half serve in specialist Gurkha ‘corps’ units providing engineering, logistics, signals and medical support.

Unlike the rest of the Army, every Gurkha undergoes full infantry combat training.

As a result, if infantry are in short supply in the field, a Gurkha engineering or signals unit can pick up their rifles and join in an attack.

The flexibility it offers is hugely prized by the Army, already facing a serious shortage of infantry.

[snip]

The problem is it is illegal to recruit and train men and women differently to do the same job.

[snip]

Putting female Gurkhas through gruelling infantry training will leave them more at risk of injury and failure, it is feared, and liable to sue the Army for sex discrimination. [How are they being discriminated against if they're being trained in the same way as men? Rhetorical question. Don't bother to answer that in the Bizarro-land of sexual politics the only way to avoid discrimination is to treat women as -- and the Victorians would love this -- the weaker sex.]

In a trial in Nepal last year no women passed the current tests.

On a slightly related topic, I have a question for you.  As I’ve always understood it, military guys wear buzz cuts because (a) it helps hygiene, especially in combat or near-combat situations and (b) it means that you don’t have a handle that a bad guy can grab.  If short hair serves a practical purpose, why aren’t military women required to shave their heads too?  I think they should be.

Where’s NOW now?

American feminists, who have done quite a number on Palin, are remarkably silent about the mind-boggling restrictions placed upon, and indignities visited upon, their sisters in Saudi Arabia:

A new prohibition may be added to the long list of those placed on women in Saudi Arabia: A new sentence according to Islamic law (fatwa) determines that women exiting the doorways of their homes must cover one of their eyes.

The array of prohibitions currently placed upon Saudi women includes forbiddance to leave home without a familial “patron,” fraternize with men in public, drive a car, put makeup on and wear high heels.

The modesty squad on the streets of Saudi Arabia follows women whose abaya (long cloak) is too tight and likely to reveal their curves or those whose hair is visible through their veils.

A senior religious cleric in the country, Sheikh Muhammad al-Habadan demands that the rules of modesty be further enhanced.

In the new Islamic legal sentence, al-Habadan announced that when leaving their homes, women must keep only one eye revealed.

According to the sheikh, “revelation of both eyes behind the veil is likely to encourage women to put make-up on and accentuate their eyes. This is corrupt behavior which conflicts with Islamic principles.”

Read the rest here.

I know I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again: A prescient friend of mine told me before 9/11 that the Muslim hatred of the Western world is grounded in the fear Muslim men have of female sexuality. Everything else — alcohol prohibitions, dog prohibitions, etc. — is just static. In apocalyptic fight between Islam and the West, it’s all about sex.  And in that regard, keep in mind that the incentive for Muslim men to commit suicide/mass murder is, yes, sex with those 70 luscious virgins (or, possibly, which will be a surprise to them, grapes).

Women and politics

I found fascinating the fact that, even in San Francisco, the most liberal, diverse, open to everything (except conservatism and religion) city in the whole US (except for Berkeley), women are not making headway in politics:

In a year when gender has played a significant role in the presidential campaign – 18 million people voted for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, and the Republican base is enthused by Gov. Sarah Palin – women in San Francisco politics aren’t gaining nearly as much traction.

In fact, they have been losing ground for decades in this famously open-minded, diverse city. In the 1980s and 1990s, several configurations of the 11-member Board of Supervisors had female majorities of six or seven members. Now, the board has three.

It doesn’t seem to occur to anyone that the fault, Dear Brutus, might not lie with the voters, but may lie with the women — or, to be more accurate, with the children.  In my neighborhood, all of the women started out in their 20s as high achieving professionals.  With children, all of those who don’t have to work have stopped.  And all of those who do have to work try to keep it part-time.

I believe all opportunities should be available to woman.  (That would be the famous equality of opportunity that true feminists desire.)  However, it’s worth noting that all women may not wish to take advantage of those opportunities.  (Putting the lie to the Leftist belief that government can force equality of outcome, that which NOW feminists desire.)

Embittered women

In the past couple of days, I’ve read more than a few articles in which liberal women express incendiary anger about Sarah Palin. I blogged yesterday about Michelle Cottle’s screed, and today read equally over-the-top material from Judith Warner (h/t The Anchoress) and Heather Malick (h/t Small Dead Animals).  In each of these articles, women complain that those who play by feminism’s rules are kicked in the teeth and that Quislings like Sarah Palin get rewarded with perks and praise.  Never mind that their feminine ideal, Hillary, got ahead the old-fashioned way, by marriage.  It was her rhetoric, not her conduct, that appealed.

I find the attitude these women express interesting, because I understand it so well.  When I worked at my first law firm, I was a horrible employee because I had all these ideas that, as a woman who paid full (and sincere) lip service to feminism’s principles, I was entitled to special treatment.  I couldn’t understand why the men who started the same year as I did were treated better and liked more — overlooking completely the fact that they worked harder, complained less, and contributed more.  I was a woman!  Didn’t “they” understand that?

Incidentally, I didn’t arrive at this self-serving, egotistical hubristic attitude on my own.  My year was the year the law firm decided to embrace diversity and hired a large group of whiny women, African-Americans and gays.*  We knew we were affirmative action hires but, instead of being grateful, we felt we were owed more than just a job.  We expected to be coddled and given opportunities notwithstanding our failure to earn them.

As the years went by, we were horrified by how obvious it was that the firm powers didn’t like us.  It never occurred to us that we were neither likable nor beneficial to the firm’s business.  Eventually, I jumped ship for a different firm where, with a clean slate, I started to learn to be a lawyer and not a feminist.  The rest of the malcontents with whom I’d worked were all fired summarily a short time later as part of a — ahem — “cost cutting” move.

Reading the articles to which I’ve linked, it’s apparent that many American women still live in the “you owe me” bubble.  Worse, since they seldom get what they feel they’re owed, they find themselves embittered — and, sadly, without even having the countervailing consolation of guns and God.

______________________

*This is not to imply that women, gays and African-Americans are whiny.  It is to say that this particular group of women, gays and African-Americans, all of whom believed they were entitled to special treatment because of their non-white male status, were in fact whiny.

You like me! You really like me!

This is kind of cool — I’m on a list that Michelle Malkin heads!  The young man who runs the Enkay Blog has assembled a list of the top 100 female bloggers and I’m currently in there at number 78.  Of course, if this list gets more play (and he hopes it does and is seeking submissions), and more women’s blogs get added to the list, I can see myself slipping.  I’m therefore enjoying my brief moment of glory.

Can this culture be saved?

Honest to God, I really do wonder sometimes if the garden-variety fusion betwen Islamic and Arabic culture is salvageable:

A teenage Iraqi girl who fell in love with a British soldier when he was in Basra was murdered by her father in an “honour killing”, it was revealed today.

Rand Abdel-Qader, 17, was suffocated and then hacked at with a knife after her family discovered she was friends with the 22-year-old soldier who she knew only as Paul.

The pair first met when Rand was working on an aid project for displaced families but it is thought the soldier is unaware of the girl’s fate.

She was stamped on, suffocated and stabbed – leaving her with puncture wounds all over her body, including her face.

Her own mother, Leila Hussein, has spoken out about the crime, revealing how her husband called out that he was cleansing “his honour” as he carried out the murder.

She told the Observer he was arrested after the brutal murder but was released without charge two hours later because it was an “honour killing”.

“He was released two hours later because it was an ‘honour killing’. And unfortunately that is something to be proud of for any Iraqi man,” she told the paper.

***

Five months on, she was brutally killed and buried without the traditional mourning ceremony in a mark of her “impurity”.

Her uncles are also said to have spat on her body because of the shame they felt she had brought on the family.

These people were not “radical Islamists,” they were not bomb throwers, they were just an every day family of Arab Muslims whose men mutilated a 17 year old girl to death and spat on her body because she had the temerity to like a man. This ferocious level of misogyny and self-loathing (because only people who really hate themselves can be so insecure about the face they present to the world) may be beyond any remediation.

Rape

If you haven’t already read Heather MacDonald’s debunking of the “Rape Epidemic” on college campuses, you must. The whole article is replete with gems such as this one:

The campus rape movement highlights the current condition of radical feminism, from its self-indulgent bathos to its embrace of ever more vulnerable female victimhood. But the movement is an even more important barometer of academia itself. In a delicious historical irony, the baby boomers who dismantled the university’s intellectual architecture in favor of unbridled sex and protest have now bureaucratized both. While women’s studies professors bang pots and blow whistles at antirape rallies, in the dorm next door, freshman counselors and deans pass out tips for better orgasms and the use of sex toys. The academic bureaucracy is roomy enough to sponsor both the dour antimale feminism of the college rape movement and the promiscuous hookup culture of student life. The only thing that doesn’t fit into the university’s new commitments is serious scholarly purpose.

The article’s first point is that the study that gave rise to the infamous “one out of four college women are raped” statistic was not merely flawed, a concept that implies that the researcher acted in good faith but erred in methodology, but was, instead, intended to arrive at the one out of four number — a result it could achieve only be stretching facts beyond all semblance of reality. There is, in fact, no rape epidemic on American campuses, and there never has been. The study’s “flaws,” of course, have never slowed down the college rape industry:

None of the obvious weaknesses in the research has had the slightest drag on the campus rape movement, because the movement is political, not empirical. In a rape culture, which “condones physical and emotional terrorism against women as a norm,” sexual assault will wind up underreported, argued the director of Yale’s Sexual Harassment and Assault Resources and Education Center in a March 2007 newsletter. You don’t need evidence for the rape culture; you simply know that it exists. But if you do need evidence, the underreporting of rape is the best proof there is.

In keeping with this political agenda, the fact that the highly funded rape centers dotting every college campus are ghost towns is irrelevant. Rather than scaling back on the centers to use the money for more useful purposes (education, anyone?), the feministas are going in the other direction: they are demanding more money, based on their contention that the empty rooms are a sign that more women are being raped than ever before. They’re just not talking about it.

MacDonald, after debunking the rape myth, then does something incredibly brave: she attacks a college social culture that is so nihilistic it creates the perfect environment for young women to find themselves in unpleasant sexual situations which are not rape, but which certainly lack any sign of love, respect, emotional commitment, or even mere affection:

So what reality does lie behind the campus rape industry? A booze-fueled hookup culture of one-night, or sometimes just partial-night, stands. Students in the sixties demanded that college administrators stop setting rules for fraternization. “We’re adults,” the students shouted. “We can manage our own lives. If we want to have members of the opposite sex in our rooms at any hour of the day or night, that’s our right.” The colleges meekly complied and opened a Pandora’s box of boorish, sluttish behavior that gets cruder each year. Do the boys, riding the testosterone wave, act thuggishly toward the girls? You bet! Do the girls try to match their insensitivity? Indisputably.

College girls drink themselves into near or actual oblivion before and during parties. That drinking is often goal-oriented, suggests University of Virginia graduate Karin Agness: it frees the drinker from responsibility and “provides an excuse for engaging in behavior that she ordinarily wouldn’t.” A Columbia University security official marvels at the scene at homecomings: “The women are shit-faced, saying, ‘Let’s get as drunk as we can,’ while the men are hovering over them.” As anticipated, the night can include a meaningless sexual encounter with a guy whom the girl may not even know. This less-than-romantic denouement produces the “roll and scream: you roll over the next morning so horrified at what you find next to you that you scream,” a Duke coed reports in Laura Sessions Stepp’s recent book Unhooked. To the extent that they’re remembered at all, these are the couplings that are occasionally transformed into “rape”—though far less often than the campus rape industry wishes.

For the unthinking, it would be easy to believe that the above paragraphs are yet another part of the old “blame the victim” mentality. (Laer, in a wonderfully thoughtful post, highlights a perfect example of this knee jerk reaction to any challenge to the campus rape paradigm.) There’s a world of difference between the two approaches, though. The old view took what was indubitably rape — forced sex on a completely unwilling victim — and pointed to inconsequential factors to justify the man’s conduct: she walked with a swing to her hips, she smiled at him, she wore a pretty dress, she’d been “flirting.” By ignoring the man’s conduct, and focusing solely on the woman’s, the legal system was able to ignore the fact that, as the woman was screaming “no,” the man was forcing sex on her.

The new rape paradigm has a very different scenario, one in which the “victim” admits that she did in fact say “yes” (although she may have intentionally reduced herself to virtually incoherent drunkeness first):

The magazine Saturday Night: Untold Stories of Sexual Assault at Harvard, produced by Harvard’s Office of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response, provides a first-person account of such a coupling:

What can I tell you about being raped? Very little. I remember drinking with some girlfriends and then heading to a party in the house that some seniors were throwing. I’m told that I walked in and within 5 minutes was making out with one of the guys who lived there, who I’d talked to some in the dining hall but never really hung out with. I may have initiated it. I don’t remember arriving at the party; I dimly remember waking up at some point in the early morning in this guy’s room. I remember him walking me back to my room. I couldn’t have made it alone; I still had too much alcohol in my system to even stand up straight. I made myself vulnerable and even now it’s hard to think that someone here who I have talked and laughed with could be cold-hearted enough to take advantage of that vulnerability. I’d rather, sometimes, take half the blame than believe that a profound evil can exist in mankind. But it’s easy for me to say, that, of the two of us, I’m the only one who still has nightmares, found myself panicking and detaching during sex for many months afterwards, and spent more time looking into the abyss than any one person should.

The inequalities of the consequences of the night, the actions taken unintentionally or not, have changed the course of only one of our lives, irrevocably and profoundly.

Now perhaps the male willfully exploited the narrator’s self-inflicted incapacitation; if so, he deserves censure for taking advantage of a female in distress. But to hold the narrator completely without responsibility requires stripping women of volition and moral agency. Though the Harvard victim does not remember her actions, it’s highly unlikely that she passed out upon arriving at the party and was dragged away like roadkill while other students looked on. Rather, she probably participated voluntarily in the usual prelude to intercourse, and probably even in intercourse itself, however woozily.

Men actually have a name for the kind of sex described above. It’s called “coyote ugly” sex, a term that I was introduced to when I lived in Texas. It posits a man so drunk that he beds a physically unattractive woman. In the morning, he is so horrified by the ugliness lying in his arms that, rather than wake her to escape, he’s willing to gnaw his own arm off to sneak away. (The analogy being to the fact that coyotes will gnaw off a leg that’s caught in a trap so as to escape.) Interestingly, this response imagines the man imposing a punishment on himself for being intoxicated enough to climb into bed with someone he never would have considered otherwise. Women, faced with the same situation — the morning after regret following the night before — are now encouraged to place the blame elsewhere for their own conduct and to cry rape.

As indicated in the last paragraph I quoted from MacDonald, she too understands the difference between women assaulted just for being female, and women who have sex they later regret:

A large number of complicating factors make the Saturday Night story a far more problematic case than the term “rape” usually implies. Unlike the campus rape industry, most students are well aware of those complicating factors, which is why there are so few rape charges brought for college sex. But if the rape industrialists are so sure that foreseeable and seemingly cooperative drunken sex amounts to rape, there are some obvious steps that they could take to prevent it. Above all, they could persuade girls not to put themselves into situations whose likely outcome is intercourse. Specifically: don’t get drunk, don’t get into bed with a guy, and don’t take off your clothes or allow them to be removed. Once you’re in that situation, the rape activists could say, it’s going to be hard to halt the proceedings, for lots of complex emotional reasons. Were this advice heeded, the campus “rape” epidemic would be wiped out overnight.

But suggest to a rape bureaucrat that female students should behave with greater sexual restraint as a preventive measure, and you might as well be saying that the girls should enter a convent or don the burka. “I am uncomfortable with the idea,” e-mailed Hillary Wing-Richards, the associate director of the Office of Sexual Assault Prevention and Women’s Resource Center at James Madison University in Virginia. “This indicates that if [female students] are raped it could be their fault—it is never their fault—and how one dresses does not invite rape or violence. . . . I would never allow my staff or myself to send the message it is the victim’s fault due to their dress or lack of restraint in any way.” Putting on a tight tank top doesn’t, of course, lead to what the bureaucrats call “rape.” But taking off that tank top does increase the risk of sexual intercourse that will be later regretted, especially when the tank-topper has been intently mainlining rum and Cokes all evening.

The only area in which I’d differ with MacDonald is with regard to her second to last sentence or, at least, I’d expand upon it: “Putting on a tight tank top doesn’t, of course, lead to what the bureaucrats call ‘rape.’” If a woman is forced into non-consensual sex that the attacker justifies by pointing to her tank top, that’s rape. However, I’m in complete agreement with MacDonald that, if the same woman gets drunk, makes out with a complete stranger, takes off the tank top on the dance floor, and then goes into a room and climbs in the bed naked with that same stranger, while she may later have regrets, he hasn’t raped her.

(I’m going to stick with this topic for the rest of this post, but I do urge you to read the rest of MacDonald’s article, which also has an extended discussion of the way in which universities encourage the hypersexualized culture at American colleges by doing such things as inviting sex shows to perform on campus.)

On the subject of that tank top: One of the things the anti-blame the victim movement did was to create an environment in which women were told that they ought to have the right to do anything they want without any risk at all. This is a striking departure from the original challenges mounted to the old “blame the victim” mentality. The original feminist attack, which was valid, challenged a legal system that allowed men to walk away without any consequences despite the fact that they had clearly forced sex, often horribly brutal sex, on an unwilling woman. These early (and rational) feminists weren’t looking at whether women should be able to engage in any conduct they wanted without consequences. Instead, they were looking at the men and saying that, if a man engaged in certain illegal sexual acts, there would inevitably be consequences regardless of the woman’s own conduct. Under this original and equitable feminist system, women were still expected not to be stupid. The only difference was that, whether the woman was stupid or not, a man who committed rape was denied the “it’s all her fault” legal defense.

I strongly support that world view. It’s a tragedy and a travesty that it’s morphed into a view that is the mirror image of the view prevailing in the pre-women’s rights era. Back then, the man was never at fault; now, the woman is never at fault. Both systems are equally abhorrent and equally damaging to the relationship between the sexes. It makes all of them enemies of each other.

Oh, yes!

Hardcore stuff for real women.

And two jokes:

Joke, the first:

A man comes home from work one day to find the house in complete chaos.  The kitchen is piled high with dirty dishes, food is strewn across the floor, the living room looks like a bomb hit it, and two filthy, fighting children are sitting in front of the TV.  With an increasing sense of panic, he runs through the house towards the bedroom.  There, he finds his wife sitting up in bed, with a book in front of her and a box of chocolates beside her.

“What’s wrong?  What happened?” he cries out.

She looks at him.

“You know how you come home every day and condescendingly ask ‘And what did you do today, dear? ‘  Well, today, I didn’t do it.”

Joke, the second:

A woman manages to sneak away from the family for a short girls night out.  When she goes up to the bar to get a drink, she finds herself next to the most gorgeous man she’s ever seen.  He catches her eye.

“Hey, Ma’am.  Tonight’s your special night.  If you ask right, I will do anything you want, anything you can think of.  I will fulfill your every desire.  [Can you just imagine him running his tongue over his lips at this point?]  There’s just one catch.  You can use only three words to tell me want you want me to do for you.  So, go ahead.  Tell me.”

The woman considers for only a moment before she looks him in the eye and says, “Clean my house.”

Hat tip:  Crossing the Rubicon

Our friends the Saudis

For those of you still wondering about what life will be like in the resurgent Islamic 7th century, here’s a bit more information, this time out of Saudi Arabia:

A court in the ultra-conservative kingdom of Saudi Arabia is punishing a female victim of gang rape with 200 lashes and six months in jail, a newspaper reported on Thursday.

The 19-year-old woman — whose six armed attackers have been sentenced to jail terms — was initially ordered to undergo 90 lashes for “being in the car of an unrelated male at the time of the rape,” the Arab News reported.

But in a new verdict issued after Saudi Arabia’s Higher Judicial Council ordered a retrial, the court in the eastern town of Al-Qatif more than doubled the number of lashes to 200.

A court source told the English-language Arab News that the judges had decided to punish the woman further for “her attempt to aggravate and influence the judiciary through the media.”

It also appears that more than the usual Islamic misogyny is at issue here.  The woman who was raped, and is now being subject to state torture is a member of S.A.’s minority Shiite community, while her rapists, who did get prison terms, are from the majority Sunni group.

God help all women in Saudi Arabia.

One of the core causes of Jihad

A friend of mine who has, over the years, proven remarkably prescient in diagnosing global ills, told me after 9/11 that a significant element in Islam’s rage against the West has to do with women — Islam demands the total subjugation of women, and Islamists view the West as a profound threat to their control over their women. This is not just a peripheral matter either. It goes to core issues of Islamic and male identity. A threat to the control Islamists assert over girls and women is a threat to the Islamists’ entire world view and their sense of self.

As part of Islamo-Facism Awareness Week, sponsored by David Horowitz’s Terrorism Awareness Project, David Horowitz’s Freedom Center has released a video highlighting the horror of women’s lives under Islamism*. The video is X-rated, not because it’s a sexy romp through the harem, but because it has pictures of girls having their external genitalia cut off with anesthetic, women beaten into bloody pulps, girls (7 years old) beheaded for having been raped, women being hanged, women being dis-limbed, and on and on in a 9 minute parade of horrors that needs to be witnessed. If you do watch it, please make sure there are no children anywhere near you. This is the stuff of nightmares — it’s an Auschwitz, Mengele world that the PC crowd blithely accepts as part of its multicultural, anti-American stance.

I’ll close this post by quoting from FrontPage Magazine about our responsibility to bear witness to these horrors, not only against women, but against all the people oppressed by Islamism:

However realistic the film, it is immeasurably less grotesque and disturbing than the daily lives of millions of women subject to Islamo-Fascist regimes. Only the insulated nature of the Islamic world, and the silence and acquiescence of Western feminists, allow this situation to continue. This silence is the greatest hope of Islamo-Fascism and the primary reason Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week is vitally needed: to end this misogynistic tyranny and allow all the world’s inhabitants to experience the miracle of human dignity. This is precisely why there has been such a massive outcry against Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week. The national campaign to censor or subvert this educational program has involved the entire spectrum of enemies we face — Islamo-Fascist theocrats on the extreme “right” to the Revolutionary Communist Party on the radical Left, both charter members of the Unholy Alliance that sees the United States as the world’s Great Satan. Between the two poles are aspiring mainstream Arab “civil rights” organizations that apologize for terrorism and the theocratic strongmen who finance it.

To combat the horrors of this video, relieve the suffering of millions of Arabs worldwide, and alert Americans to the nature of the enemy, Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week commences this week, hosting 37 separate events or panelists on 26 college campuses. Nationally known experts, such as Robert Spencer and David Horowitz, will detail for thousands of college students the comprehensive assault on the human person Islamo-Fascism embodies. Events include:

* Brown University
o Robert Spencer – 25th, 7pm, Salomon Hall 101
* Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
o Greg Davis – 24th, 7:30pm, Phillips Hall
* Clemson University
o Mike Adams – 25th, 7pm, Hunter 100
* Columbia University
o David Horowitz – 26th, 12pm, Lerner Cinema
o panel with Phyllis Chesler, Ibn Warraq, and Christina Sommers – 24th, 8pm, Math 203
* DePaul University
o Robert Spencer – 22nd, 7pm, Cortalyou Commons
* Dartmouth
o Robert Spencer – 26th, 7pm, Dartmouth Hall room 105
* Emory University
o David Horowitz – 24th, 8pm, White Hall 208
* Lawrence University
o Jonathan Schanzer – 24th, 7:30pm, Youngchild Hall
* George Mason University
o Luana Saghieh and Alan Nathan – 22nd, 8:30pm, Johnson Center Cinema
* George Washington University
o Michael Ledeen and Daphne Patai – 22nd, 10am, Mt. Vernon Campus, Eckles Auditorium
o David Horowitz – 25th, 8pm, Marvin Center
* Penn State University
o Rick Santorum – 23rd, 8pm, 119 Osmond
* Princeton
o David Horowitz – 16th, 8pm, McCosh 10
* Pepperdine
o Tammy Bruce – 22nd, 7pm, Student Lounge
* SFSU
o Brian Sussman – 24th, 12pm, Jack Adams Hall
* Temple University
o Rick Santorum – 24th, 8pm, Student Center 218
* Tufts
o Daniel Pipes – 24th, 7pm
* Tulane University
o Ann Coulter – 22nd, 7pm, McAlister Auditorium
* UC Berkeley
o Nonie Darwish – 22nd, 7pm, Evans Hall 10
* UC Santa Barbara
o Dennis Prager – 25th, 7pm, Girvetz 1004
* UCLA
o Cyrus Nowrasteh – 23rd, 6:30pm, Moore 100
o Nonie Darwish – 24th, 7pm, Haines 82
o Joe Kaufman – 25th, 7pm, Moore 100
* University of Miami
o Cyrus Nowrasteh – 24th, 7pm, Whitten University Learning Center
* University of Pennsylvania
o Rick Santorum – 24th, 5:30pm, Hillel-Steinhardt Hall
o panel with Daniel Pipes, Dr. Stephen Gale, and Ed Turzanski – 22nd, 7pm, Huntsman Hall
* University of Rhode Island
o Robert Spencer – 24th, 7pm, Memorial Union Ballroom
* University of Washington
o Michael Medved – 25th, 7pm, Smith 120
* University of Wisconsin, Madison
o David Horowitz – 22nd, 7:30, Wisconsin Union Theater
* USC
o Ann Coulter – 24th, 6pm, Annenberg School of Communication – G26

More then 100 years ago, the book Uncle Tom’s Cabin exposed the indignities of chattel slavery. The educational events of Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week modestly seek to enlighten the nation’s youth about the incalculable costs of Islamic extremism. Silence is Islamo-Fascism’s greatest ally; after viewing this film, every incensed conscience will scream that silence can no longer be tolerated.

________________________
* I use the word Islamism, as opposed to Islam, to distinguish radical practitioners of the faith from those who have opted for a more moderate form of practice that, while it may pay lip service to the more extreme demands of the Koran, does not put them into effect. I don’t feel, though, that the reform practitioners of this religion should be let off the hook. With a few exceptions, their silence in these face of the horrors perpetrated by the extremists is a moral failing for which they, too, must be held to account.

UPDATE:  YouTube banned the video, but I put in an alternative link that, I think, works.  If it doesn’t, just go to Front Page Magazine, scroll down for the notice that “Our video below, The Violent Oppresion of Women in Islam, has been banned by YouTube.” Click on the video below, and it should start playing.

Ward and June Cleaver revisited

Back in December 2004, I wrote a post over at my old blog site about how difficult life is in the 21st Century for June Cleaver. Since Blogger posts, after a certain period of time, lose all formatting, I’ll reprint it here, in an easy to read format:

I’ve been looking around at friends’ marriages, and wondering what makes some happy and some unhappy. And I keep thinking of Ward and June Cleaver, who have always typified for me the classic American division of male/female roles in a “married with children” relationship. She maintains the house; he pays the bills. They are polite to each other. She is the first line of defense for matters involving the children, but he is the final word, and all defer to him.

One could argue that, at least from the woman’s point of view, it’s a dreadful division, since she works hard, but he holds ultimate power. What’s weird, though, is that the couples I know who have returned to a Ward and June life-style have very happy marriages. Each knows his or her area of responsibility within the relationship, and that seems to take away from, rather than to add to, stress.

The other happy couples I know are those where they’ve truly mixed-and-matched the Ward and June roles. That is, both work, but both share equally in household management. Each seems to respect the other and there is a health give-and-take for responsibility. I know only two couples who have achieved this, so it seems to be a real rarity, at least in my circles.

The most angry marriages are those where the man clings to the Ward role, but expects his wife to be both June (household manager) and Ward (breadwinner). These are the households where the woman holds a full- or part-time job, and is also the primary caregiver for the children (when they’re not in school), as well as the chief shopper, cook, laundress, and house cleaner. Sadly, this is also the dominant model in my community, and I think it goes a long way to explaining the very resentful women I know.

The problem I’m observing is nothing new. Fifteen years ago, Arlie Hochschild wrote a book called The Second Shift, which examined relationships in which both man and woman work. I haven’t read the book since its publication, but my memory is that the women who carried the heaviest load were the yuppie wives whose husbands paid lip-service to an “equal” relationship in the marriage — a dynamic that precisely describes the married couples in my world.

What Hochschild discovered is that those husbands — even while claiming that, just as their wives added the Ward role to their June role, they too added the June role to their Ward role — were creating an elaborate fiction themselves. Their “equal” role in the house amounted to toting out the garbage once a week, or picking up the occasional milk. Those who laid claim to all responsibilities outside the house’s walls (that is, yard work), essentially mowed the lawn weekly. Meanwhile, their wives, who also held paying jobs, were handling shopping, cooking, cleaning, childcare, and all other miscellaneous stuff.

Ironically, those husbands who were most likely to provide real help around the house were the old-fashioned men who bitterly resented the economic necessity that forced their wives into the workplace. It was they who placed the most value on their wives’ work, and were therefore most likely to recognize the women’s sacrifice in leaving the home for the workplace. “Modern men,” with their views of equality, seemed to see traditional women’s work as valueless and were unwilling to sully their hands with it.

It’s interesting that, 15 years after I read that book as an unencumbered single, I look around my world and see that the book could just as easily have been written today, ’cause nothing’s changed. Apparently Ward and June were on to something….

It turns out Arlie Hochschild’s 18 year old conclusions and my three year old observations are still right on the money. More and more research is showing that, while men still enjoy a Ward Cleaver level of “life is good” satisfaction, augmented by more gadgets and better health than Ward could ever imagine, women are increasingly unhappy because of the burdens their Ward and June expectations impose on them:

Two new research papers, using very different methods, have both come to this conclusion. Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers, economists at the University of Pennsylvania (and a couple), have looked at the traditional happiness data, in which people are simply asked how satisfied they are with their overall lives. In the early 1970s, women reported being slightly happier than men. Today, the two have switched places.

Mr. Krueger, analyzing time-use studies over the last four decades, has found an even starker pattern. Since the 1960s, men have gradually cut back on activities they find unpleasant. They now work less and relax more.

Over the same span, women have replaced housework with paid work — and, as a result, are spending almost as much time doing things they don’t enjoy as in the past. Forty years ago, a typical woman spent about 23 hours a week in an activity considered unpleasant, or 40 more minutes than a typical man. Today, with men working less, the gap is 90 minutes.

These trends are reminiscent of the idea of “the second shift,” the name of a 1989 book by the sociologist Arlie Hochschild, arguing that modern women effectively had to hold down two jobs. The first shift was at the office, and the second at home.

But researchers who have looked at time-use data say the second-shift theory misses an important detail. Women are not actually working more than they were 30 or 40 years ago. They are instead doing different kinds of work. They’re spending more time on paid work and less on cleaning and cooking.

What has changed — and what seems to be the most likely explanation for the happiness trends — is that women now have a much longer to-do list than they once did (including helping their aging parents). They can’t possibly get it all done, and many end up feeling as if they are somehow falling short.

Mr. Krueger’s data, for instance, shows that the average time devoted to dusting has fallen significantly in recent decades. There haven’t been any dust-related technological breakthroughs, so houses are probably just dirtier than they used to be. I imagine that the new American dustiness affects women’s happiness more than men’s.

For women, it seems to be damned if you don’t have the choices and damned if you do.  Either way, the to-do list is too long, and the rewards for effort are too small.