Does anybody remember the White House Office for Women? It was a Clinton-era relic officially called the White House Office for Women's Initiatives and Outreach. When the Bush Administration closed the office and moved women to the custody of the Office of Public Liaison, the Left was furious. What?! Treat women as regular citizens and not as members of a special victim subculture? All that was seven years ago and I had just about forgotten the matter, but I have a hunch it could be aiming to come back. The old guard feminists and their student followers are swarming around the two Democrat stars and are waiting to pounce on either liberal administration. Some go for Hillary (NOW and its president Kim Gandy, Barbra Streisand, Congresswoman Maxine Waters) and some for leading man Barack Obama (Maria Shriver, Caroline Kennedy, former NARAL President Kate Michelman, Susan Sarandon). Either way, count on seeing the tired old ultra-feminist agenda thrust on an agreeable Democratic president; one willing to see the strongest, freest women on Earth as hapless victims. Lord save us.
Since it's been awhile, let's remind ourselves what that agenda might include.
First, remember some of the long-standing feminist causes: "Abortion and Reproductive Rights, Affirmative Action, Economic Equity and Sexual Harassment, Electoral Politics, Fighting the Right, Global Feminism, Lesbian Rights, Media Activism, Racial and Ethnic Diversity, Violence against Women, Women in the Military and Women-Friendly Workplace." Also on the list these days are: "Working for Peace, Judicial Nominations, Title IX/ Education, Health." Can you stand it?
The List is apt to take form in such dreadful policy as "comparable worth," lying in wait in the Fair Pay Act (sponsored by Sen. Obama) and the Paycheck Fairness Act (sponsor: Sen. Clinton.) The idea, as described by lawyer Roger Clegg, is that "companies set wages based not on supply and demand -- that would be the free market -- but on some notion of social utility. The goal is to insure that jobs performed mostly by men (say, truck drivers) are not paid more than those performed mostly by women (paralegals, perhaps.)" If you are asking who will set the wages, you can certainly guess -- "the government."
"Economic Equity" will step down from The List and become tax increases, beloved of both Democrat candidates. Never mind the cost to millions of women -- the fastest growing segment of small business -- and never mind the millions of workers these businesses sustain; let's take more of their money away. How? By raising individual tax rates under which these business women must report their earnings; the earnings they use to reinvest in their businesses and increase their workforce.
Watch out for "Global Feminism." Sounds like a return of the United Nations' "Campaign to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination Against Women" (CEDAW) a horrible treaty with a marvelous name. CEDAW is a litany of feminist and socialist demands that offers nothing to American women; but that imposes a new imperialism on an unwitting world. CEDAW wants quotas for everyone and everything; it wants government wage setting; it wants government-run childcare and it wants every child and baby signed up; and of course, it wants every Mommy at work. CEDAW hates "discrimination," which it defines as "any distinction on the basis of sex" in "any...field," and "by any person, organization or enterprise." Any organization? Any field? How about Cub Scouts, Girl Scouts, Army Rangers, the NFL, the Rainbow Girls or the Radio City Rocketts? This turkey has been rejected by the Senate repeatedly; but count on the Sisters to bring it back.
As for National Security and fighting deadly enemies, that is dubious with "Working for Peace" on The List. Feminists can count on their allies at Code Pink -- "a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end the war in Iraq, stop new wars, and redirect our resources into healthcare, education and other life-affirming activities." These life-affirming activities, the Sisters forget, will not happen if we refuse to protect and defend them.
Feminists have spent seven years going after the Augusta National Golf Club and promoting "Love Your Body" activities, while paying less attention to the real mistreatment of women in the outside world. Says columnist Mark Steyn, "The Western, feminist Left is like those Japanese guys in the jungle who don't know the war is over." Indeed they don't know; and they have two candidates who don't know either and are willing to go along. It's deja vu all over again.
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