In last week's column, "Feminism, that most oft misunderstood of movements," Ms. Mari Rogers attempts to clear up common misconceptions regarding modern day feminism in the United States. Unfortunately, her article serves only to further mischaracterize the debate.
Aside from a small minority of people, I think most Americans agree that women should have equal opportunity for self-realization in whatever field they choose. The problem people have with feminism is not with the goals, but with the proposed methodologies for reaching these goals as well as the extreme rhetoric employed by prominent feminist organizations.
Feminist advocacy groups may lobby for legislation or pressure private institutions to enact corrective measures to "level the playing field." Whether such actions are effective or ethical is another debate, but opponents of such methods are portrayed as being anti-women or actively trying to maintain the imbalance of power in our society, which is entirely unfair.
The reasons for perpetual gender inequality and the proper means for correcting such inequality are myriad and complex. Unfortunately, the debate over feminism has been characterized by extreme, dishonest, emotionally charged rhetoric. As a culture, we need to look at these issues objectively and rationally, and remove moral judgments from the equation.
Ms. Rogers need not be what "Facebook" or "cereal commercials" suggest she should be. I doubt, however, that anyone is truly advocating that she takes the results of "What 'Real Chance at Love' Girl Are You?" quizzes or moral imperatives espoused by Cap'n Crunch seriously.
- Tom Bluhm, 2010
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