Feminism teaches a Marxist dialectic of women and men as antagonistic social classes. In a time of incredible material prosperity and individual choice, we are warned that we are just a few Electoral College votes away from young, fertile women being rounded up by wealthy, white patriarchs and forced to carry their infant children to term.
Other men, it is assumed, would not flirt with the women and try to convince them they would make better lovers and providers but would instead ally with the wealthy patriarchs, arresting women at their behest. Of course, that’s not how this works. That’s not how any of this works.
First, women are, in fact, the “weaker sex.” Women’s political clout depends on having enough men agreeing with them to enforce their policy preferences. If the men don’t buy in to the program, say, the criminalization of rape, then nothing gets enforced. The laws don’t get passed, the wars don’t get fought, the bad men don’t get arrested. An all-female military or police force would just get laughed at. The physically fit men would leave, taking their wives who like masculine men with them, and the remaining masculine females would be reduced to bullying geriatric and disabled men and calling each other bitch. Women are neither physically equipped nor mentally wired to be violent enforcers of a social order. Again, if the men don’t have a buy-in, they won’t enforce anything. Marriage and parenting give men a stake in female safety and bodily integrity.
Second, this whole Battle-of-the-Sexes strategy never works because too many of the soldiers will run off and sleep with the enemy. The notion that women can just threaten to shut off the vajayjay and get the men to do whatever they want doesn’t work because women like sex at least as much as men do. The perception that women are the wet blankets on sex arises from the fact that they have to be more cautious about their sexual partner being a violent psycho or impregnating them with less-than-fatherhood-material sperm. Women also like their stuff and their families a lot more than other peoples’ stuff and other peoples’ families, so don’t be surprised when a large number of women don’t join the crusade for “free” OB-GYN care for women.
Note that this runs in the male direction as well. Young men are not going to support policies that restrict access to women and dole them out among a few well-connected men. This is why young men are leaving Islamic societies. It’s also why the Mormons dropped polygamy.
Third, where did feminists get the notion that a man wants a dependent child to show up every time he has an orgasm? Birth control is not going anywhere because men have a strong buy-in: they get to have sex with a woman they find attractive and not end up with a kid who will cost $300,000 over a middle-class lifetime.
The premise of women and men as mutually antagonistic social classes is kind of weak, given our sexually dimorphic reproduction. That’s why the TV series The Handmaid’s Tale has to introduce a venereal disease epidemic and environmental catastrophe to be at all plausible. Polygamy in civilized society is at least as insane as slavery, so only a society under pathological stress or delusion would have it.
The original novel never really got around that basic sociology, so the TV writers are helping out author Margaret Atwood there. Otherwise, it’s just a lurid Gothic fantasy about sexually desirable women being ravaged by powerful, wealthy white men.
Here’s a song from more innocent times:
The other takeaway is that liberal arguments are increasingly unmoored from reality. The future will belong to cultures that don’t put women and men in head-to-head social and economic competition with each other.