August 23rd 2003

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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: Saving the Internet from itself

EDITORIAL: Australia-US trade deal and the debt crisis

CANBERRA OBSERVED: Marriage law changes: the fight is worth it

AGRICULTURE: Water rights and trading petition launched

ECONOMY: The housing boom: history repeats

STRAWS IN THE WIND: Dictators and dark continents / Get Blair

HISTORY: How political myths are made

Senate calls for EU-style 'Pacific Community'

FAMILY: Governments put gay marriage on the agenda

COMMENT: Feminist arithmetic

NEW ZEALAND: The story behind the destruction of ANZUS

PHILIPPINES: Filipino coup attempt destabilises Arroyo

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Feminist arithmetic

by Babette Francis

News Weekly, August 23, 2003
For anyone who has a smattering of mathematics, the constant equation by feminist writers and in the general media of "feminists" and "women" is particularly irritating because polls and surveys have repeatedly shown that the majority of women do not identify themselves as "feminists".

In my view, assuming "women" are identical with "feminists" is not just assuming apples are identical with oranges, but that apples are the same as rotten apples.


Feminist writers constantly refer to feminist desires as "women's rights", as if all women are committed to the feminist wish list, the most significant item being an untrammelled right to abortion, even when the foetus has a gestational age of nine months.

Phyllis Schlafly, one of the greatest pro-family leaders in the USA, has a succint description of feminism. Referring to a book Guide to Feminist Organisations by Kimberly Schuld, published by Capital Research Centre, Phyllis sums up feminist ideology:

"Women are victims of an oppressive patriarchal society; all men are guilty both individually and collectively; and men who abuse women are not anomalous but typical.

"Feminists claim that women's problems are not personal but societal and require constitutional, legislative or litigious remedies. The liberation of women (from home, husband, family and children) requires government to fill the gap with tax-funded services, lawyers and daycare".

American writer Midge Decter says in her foreword that this book is long overdue. By setting forth the facts about 35 feminist groups, this guide clarifies how the radical feminists built their political power so that they are falsely touted by the media as "the voice of women," even though all polls show that the big majority of women reject the label "feminist."

The feminists did it by organisation, networking and lots of money, much of which came from left-wing foundations, corporations headed by weak-kneed executives, and grants of taxpayers' funds.

The feminist groups detailed in the guide include the noisy activist organisations, the decades-old women's groups that had respectable reputations until they were captured by feminists, the think tanks that grind out dubious data to fortify feminist follies, and the abortion-propaganda groups masquerading under the euphemism "women's health." Networking keeps them interconnected and well- funded.

These groups may appear to have different missions, but they have a common ideology, and it is instructive for Australians to examine the list so we can understand US and UN politics and because there are parallel groups in Australia.

First among the activist and advocacy feminist organisations in the US is the National Organisation for Women (NOW). The Australian equaivalent is Women's Electoral Lobby (WEL). NOW lobbies for feminist legislation, organises protest rallies, initiates lawsuits, and always backs Democratic Party candidates and proposals.


The NOW agenda supports all abortion rights including partial-birth abortion, gay and lesbian rights, worldwide legalisation of prostitution, and unrestricted access to pornography in libraries. According to the guide, "NOW revels in attacking Christianity and traditional values, conservative ideas and men," with Rush Limbaugh, Jerry Falwell and Promise Keepers their favourite targets.

Feminists do not tolerate internal dissent. "Feminists for Life", a pro-life group, are not allowed to speak or have book stalls at feminist conferences.

NOW demanded that its members give unquestioning support to Bill Clinton despite his shabby sexual shenanigans, because he had supported every item on the abortion-rights agenda.

Tammy Bruce, former president of the Los Angeles chapter of NOW, spilled the beans about how Bill Clinton bought NOW's support with taxpayer grants for "tobacco control" from the Department of Health and Human Services: "California NOW and National NOW received three-quarters of a million dollars (US$767,099) during the [Paula] Jones and [Monica] Lewinsky scandals."

The League of Women Voters abandoned its former credibility and became a federally funded lobby to expand the size of government, so that it can accommodate expensive feminist programs. The League supports abortion access, universal health care, more environmental regulation, and increased power for the United Nations.

The American Association of University Women turned itself into a vehicle to clamour for claims of feminists whose off-the-wall hypotheses aren't taken seriously in the academic world.

The feminists use the YWCA to teach radical feminism to the next generation. In Australia the YWCA has also been captured by feminists, and receives a huge grant from our Office of the Status of Women.

Funding for feminist foundations comes from many sources that ought to know better. NOW Legal Defence and Education Fund has raked in corporate donations from a long list topped by American Express, Chase Manhattan, Colgate-Palmolive, IBM, Johnson & Johnson, New York Times Foundation, Revlon, Saks, and New York brokerage houses; from Ford, Rockefeller and other wealthy foundations and US$1,678,252 in government grants since 1996.

Democrat support

Emily's List in the USA, which contributes only to Democratic pro-abortion feminist candidates, put US$20 million into political campaigns in 2000 and another $20 million into campaigns this year. That's twice as much as the second largest political action committee. Such a vast amount of money explains why Democrat Senators don't dare to confirm a judge who is pro-life.

A local Emily's List, sponsored by Joan Kirner (Vic) and Carmen Lawrence (WA), is active in Australia as well. It helps pro-abortion, pro-affirmative action feminists win pre-selection and helps fund their election campaigns.

Despite all the corporate money donated to them, feminist organisations in the US have not been all that successful. The Republican Party regained control of the Senate and there were pro-life gains in the House of Representatives.

The Bush Administration has appointed such excellent pro-life and pro-family delegates to UN Conferences that feminist groups have decided it is pointless to work towards a "Beijing + 10" Women's Conference in 2005 but are planning to wait till 2010 when Bush will no longer be in the White House.

  • Babette Francis

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