In last weekend’s Australian, Angela Shanahan writes about the hypocritical positions taken by women’s magazines regarding marriage (Shanahan, 2012). She is to be congratulated for an honest look at what feminism actually does, rather than what it proclaims.
She notes that these periodicals promote
…insouciant treatments of lesbian partnerships, promiscuity for both sexes, and mouthing of empty feminism, as they wallow in the latest shrill accusation of misogyny from the Prime Minister…
She then goes contrast this with the sector’s fascination with the latest royal pregnancy, noting that “their biggest bucks are actually made from the aspiration to something as sweetly traditional as a white wedding and a first baby.”
It has to be good for the men’s movement when statements like these are made in the mainstream media by a leading journalist:
But still the wearying “you can have it all” mantra of Helen Gurley Brown is cynically fed to a naive love-hungry readership. The magazine industry’s archly superior view from the metropolitan heights is steeped in callow sexual mores and bathed in the righteous glow of empty feminist ideology.
There is a lot to Shanahan’s insights into marriage. I think that the term “traditional marriage” refers to a time that never was, but certainly have to agree with Shanahan’s view:
Because marriage and family are not made in heaven; they are made on earth of hard slog and values like unselfishness and scrupulous sexual fidelity of both partners.
No, the real world should not impose on their princesses-in-waiting. These publications thrive on what Peter Allamano dubbed The Bold, Independent Woman of Today (Allamano, 2012). These BIWOTs are beautiful, elegant, confident, strong women. Of course, these women cannot possibly be this way on their own. It can only come as a result of purchasing the various advertised products.
A woman who is not salon-perfect, painted, jewellery adorned, perfumed, deodorized and sanitized is not a real woman. And even with all the gunk on her face and body she is not complete. She needs all the relationship advice books she can get, and the accompanying keep-fit DVD. And, of course, be familiar with all the latest feminist thought on why more women should be running major corporations on a part-time, single-parent friendly basis.
But she’s also reminded that with the wrong accessory or last season’s colours she will instantly lose the dream. They both feed the neurosis and offer the cure, which only fuels the next day’s neurosis.
Shanahan rightly points out that this view of women, and many women’s acceptance and conformance to this view, is actually bad for women. What happens, she says, is that young women, caught between the impossible fantasies of the fairy tale wedding and the sex-in-the-city you-go-grrl with a new man every week, essentially gives up any thoughts of marriage and just has children anyway. Often, this is to multiple fathers.
“None of this is good for the children, and it’s disastrous for women who lurch from one bad relationship to the next.”
Shanahan is on the money with these statements, but is still a red-pill short of reality. There is one vital cog missing in the rose-coloured picture of bliss.
Yes, I’m talking about the lucky guy. Him who is waiting for her royalness at the alter. Him, whose complete ensemble including wedding ring, monkey suit and haircut cost less than her left shoe. He who gets a walk on part on her special day.
According to these magazines, men only exist, in an almost cardboard cut out form, to fulfill these fantasies. For her, he has to be rich, even royal, handsome, strong, passionate, faithful, kind and environmentally aware.
For him, she just has to be herself.
Of course, by “herself” they mean with all the aforementioned products so professionally administered that he-who-hardly-matters is convinced she has that natural look.
Take Woman’s Day’s own view of The Royal Couple of the Hour, or Wills and Kate as we who like to pretend we are on familiar terms call them.
For Kate, she “…will not only become the wife of Prince William, she will also take on the new title of Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge (Woman’s Day, 2012)”. Implied in the titles, of course, are the palaces, estates, servants and a credit card that never runs out.
As for William,
… more attention is being paid to one of Kate Middleton’s most stunning qualities – her hair.
Yes, the marriage literally changes Kate’s life in every imaginable sense. William gets a wife with hair.
But, I am also talking about those “multiple fathers” that Shanahan mentions almost in passing. Yes, the sperm donors. Passion with a wannabe goddess supposedly on the pill, and it only costs 18 years of child support.
For after all, what are multiple fathers if they are not a means for a BIWOT to diversify her income streams?
Some real fortunate guys actually marry her majesty, pay for the horrendously expensive wedding, the exorbitant honeymoon, her legal fees for the divorce, alimony and child support. All in one blissful package.
There is an extra special something that befalls a chosen few: False accusations of abusing her and the kids.
And, in almost every one of these never-to-be-forgotten romances, the woman will have hair.
There’s no mention at all that some of these men might, in fact, have their hearts broken. Not because her magnificence no longer deigns him suitable, but because he can’t see the kids he loves. Those kids who also love him.
I’ll be the first to agree that all of this is bad for the children. There is no doubt in my mind that is bad for the women who slavishly seek fulfilment through constant use of Creme de Foreskin.
Yes, it is even bad for women in general.
I can’t help pointing out, though, that it is also very, very bad for men.
So, it seems Angela Shanahan and others are starting out on a path. They have noticed the smell and are prising open the lid. Even though we’re still not getting much of a mention, her forthright condemnation of feminism has to be good for men in the long run.
For this she should be congratulated.
Allamano, P. (2012). The Bold Independent Woman of Today and the Good Men and Boys in Her Life. Retrieved December 10, 2012, from New Male Studies: http://newmalestudies.com/OJS/index.php/nms/article/view/6/1
Shanahan, A. (2012, December 8). When the marital fairytale wreaks havoc. Retrieved December 9, 2012, from The Australian: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/opinion/when-the-marital-fairytale-wreaks-havoc/story-e6frg6zo-1226532299793
Woman’s Day. (2012). Royals. Retrieved December 9, 2012, from Woman’s Day: http://womansday.ninemsn.com.au/celebrities/royals/