A Day Without [Feminist] Women

One is tempted to say “good riddance.”  The only impact they’re likely to make unfortunately is to hurt other women who are forced to take the day off to watch their kids who can’t go to school because so many teachers took off that schools had to be closed. Many of these women will be of lower incomes who cannot afford to miss a day of work or pay for extra childcare.  It’s also possible that some of the women who strike today will lose their jobs — tomorrow may be a repeat DayWithoutJobs (as it was for those immigrants who decided to take the day off without permission).  I’ve seen several comments saying this could actually help businesses weed out the crazies – ‘ah, they’ve identified themselves; that makes it easy to pick who’ll be in this next lay-off!’

According to protest spokeswoman Cassady Findlay:

the action is aimed at highlighting the effect of women on the country’s socio-economic system and would demonstrate how the paid and unpaid work of women keeps households, communities and economies running.

“We provide all this value and keep the system going, and receive unequal benefits from it,” Findlay said.

Findlay said it is important for white women to be in solidarity with minority women… “It’s when women of all backgrounds strike and stand together that we’re really going to see the impact.”

Unlike the Women’s March, Wednesday’s protest focuses on the absence of women, who are being steered to local rallies and community groups and away from work or shopping in stores or online. Organizers also are asking women to wear red to signify love and sacrifice.

What exactly do they mean by “unpaid work”? Homemakers and stay-at-home moms?  So you’re going to not bother to feed your children today?  Let the kids run in the street so you can lie on the couch snacking and binge-watching Netflix?  Let your home become a pigsty?  This proves what exactly?  How is this supporting any cause?

Most families do appreciate the women who help to run things and take care of them.  Ask most men and they’ll express gratitude for what their wives do (and insist they’re very happy they don’t have to do those things!).  Sure, sometimes women are taken for granted in domestic settings, but how often does anyone, female or male, get praised to high heaven for the work they are expected to do for their jobs?  The unequal benefits women supposedly receive for their work is a feminist propaganda point that has been disproved so many times it’s like beating a dead horse at this point.  Feminist Christina Hoff Sommers goes over the facts again here.

How about about wearing red to signify love and sacrifice?  Sounds nice doesn’t it?  But how does spitefully refusing to do your jobs (whatever they may be) and ignoring your responsibilities prove your worth  or demonstrate love and sacrifice?  Selfish whining, self-importance, and grown-up (sort of) versions of temper tantrums sound like the opposite of love and sacrifice to me.

Despite platitudes about solidarity among women, let’s not forget that women of all backgrounds aren’t actually welcome in this protest.

It’s being billed as “A Day Without a Woman,” but apparently only pro-union, pro-choice, anti-Israel women who can afford to skip work need apply… Like the Women’s March, however, the event is embedded with political messages that many women may find objectionable.

The Day Without a Woman manifesto includes strong support for unions, a “living wage,” “fair pay” and “solidarity with the sex workers’ rights movement,” without explaining what those policies entail.

One of the group’s premier partners is Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, which effectively shuts out pro-life women, said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America.

“Does Planned Parenthood, a main sponsor of the Women’s March, approve the closing of schools and putting unnecessary burdens on women, especially working mothers who rely on a regular school schedule?” said Ms. Hawkins. “Are they OK with children from low-income families who will go hungry on Wednesday? Women’s empowerment shouldn’t rely on putting other women and children in precarious situations just to make a point.”

Aside from the slew of parents complaining about school closures, there have been plenty of other criticisms.  One writer claims that ‘A Day Without a Woman’ is a strike for privileged protesters:

Make no mistake, March 8 will mostly be a day without women who can afford to skip work, shuffle childcare and household duties to someone else, and shop at stores that are likely to open at 10 and close at 5. As for wearing red, what is the dress code, exactly? Are you supposed to wear your pink pussy hats, too?

***

A Day Without a Woman seems especially poised for unquantifiable results, given the diffuse nature of its platform.

 Any male who complains about having to pick up the slack left by striking/boycotting women can count on plenty of eye-rolling invocations of the popular refrain “I Drink Male Tears.”

Meanwhile, for the millions of women who have no choice but to show up and meet their responsibilities on March 8 (and every day), it will be business as usual.

Which, when you stop to think about it, is kind of the point, isn’t it? At least it should be. We are nearly half the labor force now. We are just as important in the workplace and to our families’ fiscal welfare as men. All things being equal (which is what we’re after, right?), we are too essential to play hooky.

That’s why the idea that women should take a day off en masse to make a political point is both self-defeating and vaguely insulting. It’s meant to highlight how crucial we are, but its very premise also suggest the opposite: Women are expendable. A Day Without a Woman plays into the idea that we entered the workforce not to support ourselves and our families but to combat boredom or to boost our self-esteem. For all but a very few affluent women, that’s never been the case.

Demonstrating yet again that they don’t actually care about real women, their children or their families, privileged feminists Strike and March and Protest to end imaginary wrongs. They don’t even have concrete objectives or policy suggestions to end these supposed injustices, much less notice or care about the true injustices in the world today.

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