Feminists Are Not Normal Human Beings

I have been thinking about women lately.

I know.

I’m usually thinking about my investment portfolio (not as big as Romney’s!) or dressage. Or at the very least: baboons.

But the women. They’re dominating my screen.

So there’s the binders thing.

I don’t think Dora will leave the vida dolce she enjoys here.

The binders thing works, true, but Romney didn’t ask for any binders at Bain.

From Franke-Ruta: “Romney did a good job appointing women to high office in the context of a bipartisan statewide push [that began before his election] to get him to do so as a new governor, but a terrible job in finding and promoting women to senior roles in the context of the high-paying private-sector business he built himself.”

Then I learned there’s a new phrase for insulting condescension in the ivory tower: “academic mansplaining.” Which I experienced from my students, in case you were wondering about the level of respect our youths show womanish humanities PhDs. I’m a regular Dangerfield in the classroom.

My gratuitously confrontational post yesterday led to some womeny commenting.

Breezy Ms. Mentor decries yet more academic preposterousness, with depressingly passive-aggressive advice to the graduate student whose professor and male peers called a rape-victim in a novel a “slut” who “deserved it.”

And the woman who asked the killer (and unanswered) wage-gap question last night WON’T EVEN CALL HERSELF A BLEEPING FEMINIST.

Despite asking a question that raised the hackles of the anti-feminist brigade, Fenton was vehement when I asked her if she’s a feminist. “Absolutely not,” she said. “I’m a 24-year-old woman that lives in the United States and feels like I should be treated the same as anyone else. That makes me a normal human being.”

I asked her to clarify how she defined feminism, given that she’d told me she was passionate about “women’s equality in the workforce” and had said, “I’m very protective of my reproductive rights.” Fenton said, “I’m not only concerned with women.”

Feminists aren’t “normal human beings,” you guys.

Sputter sputter.

At least Obama actually talked about me last night! First time ever! Saying that I should be allowed to use Planned Parenthood for crucial health care services, that I deserve equal pay for equal work, that pro-woman policies are good for the economy and for the whole family. Like Disneyland.

And while I recognize that I’m part of a voting demographic that may decide this election, forcing the candidates to confront the inconvenient fact of my existence with platitudes and postures, I am grateful. (Were Obama’s siren songs about women just a calculated posture? I don’t care. Because even when Romney was talking about something close to my feminist heart, pro-family flex-time policies, he sounded worse than Don Draper. And he blamed single parents (moms) for the Aurora theater shooting.)

In any case, it’s not all bad for people with my parts.

But if I’m not a normal human being? What am I? A dressaging baboon? A binder (make mine purple plaid, please)? A collection of organs by which political and marketing consultants make assumptions about my beliefs, habits, and choices?

A cyborg?

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2 thoughts on “Feminists Are Not Normal Human Beings

  1. A.M.B. says:

    I couldn’t even believe Romney’s answer to the equal pay question. Didn’t his “people” prepare him for that? He couldn’t have hoped that all of the moderators would be as limited in their questioning as Lehrer was. Seriously.

    • Elizabeth says:

      I know! The “binders” was one of the least offensive approaches he took to family/gender/women’s issues. I keep seeing Romney trying to be relevant, but something in his personality turns these reasonable ideas, like flex-time policies, into 50s-bot statements insulting women.

      So even if his “people” prepared him, he can’t make the talking points about women sound right.

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