After reading this op-ed, I thought to myself: is it too early to start drinking? Enter The Globe and Mail’s Leah McClaren, who didn’t like how her son reacted to when she handed him a dandelion and rejected it because flowers are pretty and therefore only for girls. Oh, keep in mind her son, James, is only 3. Nevertheless, panic ensued.
“When he hands me back a flower because pretty things are for girls, I think, what’s next? Kindness? Decency? Dancing?” she wrote. For starters, you’re level of intensity about this is absolutely out of control. Who the hell cares? I said this stuff all the time when I was a boy. I didn’t like girly stuff and guess what I turned out fine—all my friends turned out fine. I didn’t turn into a Patrick Bateman-like serial killer who demeans and murders women. He rejected a dandelion, which he should have because they ruin your lawn and they’re just a total pain in the ass. This isn’t the harbinger of anything sinister, lady. Let’s take a chill pill. Yet, she has the perfect solution: she’s going to force her son to take ballet [emphasis mine]:
Until recently, I’ve been quite happy to be surrounded by boys in all their stereotypical boyishness. I don’t have to struggle with what most parents of girls I know refer to, shudderingly, as “the whole princess thing.” And frankly, from an aesthetic as well as political perspective, I have always been glad of it.
Thank god for boys, who just muck about in their saggy track pants, smashing up toys and teaching each other to belch the alphabet (Freddy, 7, can now get all the way up to “K” in one breath). Sure, they’ll destroy the furniture building forts, but at least they won’t fill your house with plastic engagement rings and insist on wearing hideously flammable poly-blend prom dresses for five years straight.
Boys loathe that stuff, and as a feminist mom so do I – so we’re on the same page then, right?
But as I watch my son reject flowers and dolls and even pink Popsicles – all things that until, very recently, he adored – on the grounds that they are “girlish… There is something inherently sexist, even covertly misogynist, in the way we discourage boys away from pretty things while telling girls they can have it all.
This sort of messaging is a bad thing for boys because it’s culturally limiting, but in the broader sense it’s even worse for girls. Because what it is saying is this: Boy stuff is universally cool and girl stuff is silly and worthless.
Much as I dislike the idea of anything being categorized as inherently feminine or masculine, it’s hard to explain poststructuralist gender theory to a three-year old. For James, the world is pretty much binary at the moment, and trying to shift that perspective – little by little – has become my pet project. It’s also a window into what a strange place the world must be for transgender or gender-non-conforming kids.
If I want my son to love and respect women, I am going to have to teach him to embrace – and ideally appreciate – “girlish” things. That’s why I’m weaving him a dandelion crown and signing him up for ballet.
I’m going to turn the little alphabet belcher into a proud princess whether he likes it or not.
Now, full disclosure: my mother is a feminist. She’s strong-willed, has her opinions, and don’t you dare tell her she can’t do anything in this world. At the same time, she never believed in this crap. And it is pure, unadulterated crap.
“It’s hard to explain post-structuralist gender theory to a 3-year old” Gee—I never would have guessed that. Seriously, what in the fresh hell is this? This is typical boy behavior. This is how we act when we’re young. We grow out of it and for me; it was with good female role models. The Vespa clan has some strong-willed women—believe me. They set out and carved out their slice of the world, but as normal people, not through the marching orders of Andrea Dworkin. The keyword there is normal. Now, we have gender theories being infused with how to raise kids? This isn’t about parenting. This is about reality. Post-structural gender theory—are we on bath salts? This line of thought is seated in the erasure of gender, race, and other societal descriptors that are not malleable, though the Left sees otherwise.
Still, getting back on track here, a writer was appalled that her 3-year old son rejected a crap flower and now is determined to feminize him because he might grow up to hate women. We got this all from a dandelion?
This isn’t the only weird thing McClaren has written. She was suspended for a week last month for writing about how she tried to breastfeed Conservative MP Michael Chong’s baby at a dinner party ten years ago, even though she wasn’t lactating (via National Post):
The Globe and Mail has removed a piece from its website in which a longtime columnist claims she once attempted to breastfeed the infant child of Conservative leadership candidate Michael Chong without his or his wife’s consent, and while she was not lactating.
In her column, titled “The joy (and politics) of breastfeeding someone else’s baby,” Leah Mclaren, 41, said the incident occurred at a Toronto house party when she was “about 25 and did not have a baby – or even a boyfriend.”
McLaren goes on to claim that, after wandering upstairs in search of a washroom, she spotted an infant boy in a room, sat up in a portable carseat, and held him in her arms.
After the child sucked on her finger, McLaren said she realized “what he wanted… The only problem was, I had no milk. But would it be so bad, I wondered, if I just tried it out – just for a minute – just to see what it felt like?”
I think we’ll leave it there.