The feminists are going through one of their periodic soul-searching psychological examinations of what the women's liberation movement did or did not do for them, and why they are not happy with the result. Feminist dominance in newspapers, magazines, book publishers, television and academia makes it easy to command a full media rollout for their agonizing.
The media are glad to divert public attention from the failure of Barack Obama's stimulus to create jobs. So, we have ponderous discussions: Maria Shriver's report (with help from a liberal think tank) called "A Woman's Nation Changes Everything," a Time Magazine cover story headlined with the double entendre "The State of the American Woman," Gail Collins' book "When Everything Changed" and articles from all the feminist columnists.
We wonder if it's just a coincidence that this torrent of words immediately precedes Halloween. The writers are scared of their own research because it contradicts much of their gender-neutral ideology.
These well-educated writers long ago identified the major goal of the women's liberation movement as getting more wives out of the home and into the labor force. They've been strikingly successful with this goal -- women are now half the labor force, and 40 percent of women are essential family breadwinners.
In the current recession, the majority of workers laid off have been men (especially from construction and manufacturing). Jobs where women predominate have not been much affected.
Even so, the feminists demanded that the Obama administration give half the stimulus jobs to women rather than to the shovel-ready work that was the reason for passing the stimulus funds. Whatever the feminists demand from the Democrats they get, and the stimulus money was directed to jobs in education, health care and social services.
So what are the feminists complaining about? They want the taxpayers to provide high-quality daycare and paid family leave, to pass laws to prohibit employers from ordering women to work overtime (as men are often required to do) and probably to force men to assume half the household and baby-care duties.
The feminists are still crying about President Richard Nixon vetoing a federal program to make daycare a middle-class entitlement. But Nixon's action was popular then and still is because the majority of Americans don't want their tax dollars to pay for babysitters for other people's children.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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