February 18th 2012

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Articles from this issue:

NATIONAL AFFAIRS: Federal Coalition commits to defending marriage

CANBERRA OBSERVED: The party that has lost its way

CLIMATE CHANGE I: Iceland data "doctored" to back global warming

CLIMATE CHANGE II: Three top scientists debunk NSW govt sea-level scare


EDITORIAL: How to address the boat people crisis

COVER STORY / DEFENCE: Australia's future in the US alliance

INDUSTRY POLICY: What will come after the mining boom?

UNITED STATES: Rick Santorum and the road to the White House

SOCIETY: Eight myths about legalising hard drugs

FAMILY: Feminism the sworn enemy of families

REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH: Planned Parenthood's protection racket

OPINION: The case for the European Union

CINEMA: Britain's first woman PM

BOOK REVIEW Master historian's book a delight to read

BOOK REVIEW Surviving Cambodia's killing fields

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Feminism the sworn enemy of families

by Tempe Harvey

News Weekly, February 18, 2012

My close encounter with feminism was confined to a fortnight during 1982 when I was studying first-year law and a Masters in study avoidance techniques.

Gaining credit in the latter, I tucked myself into a cubicle in the University of Queensland’s Duhig Library and
listened to hours of cassette recordings of American feminist academics interviewing each other about women’s liberation. I learnt all about patriarchy (“that men control everything”), women’s studies (“that men are bad”) and affirmative action.

Those women had me convinced that I had a great career ahead of me.

But what about my mother? She had led an empty life through her husband and children since her 1950s marriage. Hoping to turn things around for her, I gently raised this one morning as my mother drove me through Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley. I asked: “Mum, don’t you feel there’s more to life? Don’t you want a career or to do something just for yourself?”

Without turning, she smiled and replied: “The only thing that really matters in life is loving people and being loved in return. Best of all, you grow more deeply in love with children, yours and others, through spending time with them, teaching them things and discovering who they are.”

When I recovered from feeling about a centimetre high, I came to feel reassured that, as usual, my mother was right.

After practising law for a decade or so, I switched jobs to mothering, naively believing that I had left my short-lived feminist angst behind.

Thirty years since I turned my back on it, feminism now threatens my chosen career as a mother and the rights of children everywhere.

At the heart of feminist theory is the notion that mothers have no special need for their babies and vice versa. In other words it denies “attachment theory”. This attachment is critical to human survival and is probably the strongest of the love bonds that hold the natural family together.

Feminism’s demand for “equal workforce representation” in the name of equal rights for women is incompatible with attachment theory. If you accept that mothers naturally bond with their babies and naturally love working with them, then women will be over-represented as mothers by choice (!), whether feminists like it or not.

You don’t have to be a maths genius to see that women’s strong preference for mothering guarantees that they will be a great deal less represented in every other job.

Yet, in the name of feminism (but really in the interests of business, as will be shown), families are slugged with higher taxes to fund welfare incentives to equalise the ratio of women to men in paid work. This carrot-and-stick approach forces women to give up their preferred job of mothering.

Interestingly, feminists slam marriage as giving men unequal power over women. Yet marriage vows require “What’s mine is his and what’s his is mine.” You can’t get more equal than that.

Feminist theory is harmful enough as a mere personal belief. However, its harm is amplified when it is used as a tool to access billions in taxpayer dollars or to empower specific groups with anti-family agendas.

Feminism is the deceptive gift-wrapping around harmful laws passed through parliament to profit businesses (or empire-building public servants) or to otherwise dismantle the natural family.

The peddlers of feminist theory in our parliaments are feminist politicians such as Labor Prime Minister Julia Gillard, Queensland Premier Anna Bligh, Tasmanian Premier Lara Giddings and federal Liberal backbencher Dr Sharman Stone (the behind-the-scenes architect of Tony Abbott’s paid parental leave scheme).

They contend that women and babies have no special need to spend time together (beyond a short bonding period compatible with paid work) and that taxpayers’ money should be spent getting those mothers into paid work, and in subsidising the day-care industry to that end.

Other feminist policies that interfere with attachment and harm both mothering and babies include:

• Abortion, as this kills babies.

• Morality-free sex education, as this increases the chances of unsupported, welfare-dependent mothers.

• Government-funded paid parental leave (PPL), as this rewards with taxpayer funding the minority of women who outsource childcare between pregnancies. In Sweden, PPL, which was introduced in the early 1970s, has resulted in 95 per cent of two-to-five-year-olds being placed in institutionalised childcare in 2009.

Same-sex marriage and same-sex surrogacy are feminist-inspired and supported. These new family structures are predicated on the supposed inter-changeability of male and female roles.

They are also based on the false belief that children have no special need for their mother and result in the separation of children from their mothers, sometimes forever. What of the rights of baby Zachary, who was obtained through surrogacy by pop star Elton John and his civil partner David Furnish? Or the rights of Queensland’s first surrogate baby, whose mother now bitterly regrets giving him to a homosexual male couple in 2010?

Men, whose natural instinct is normally to protect women against such laws, are, in many cases, brainwashed by politically-correct feminist thinking. Many men accept the argument that women are somehow harmed by spending time mothering, or else they swallow the anti-intellectual line that only women can discuss feminist issues. Add to this the supreme achievement of feminism — the conviction of many men that they are to blame for the misery in women’s lives.

Feminism thus saps men of their confidence, as I discovered recently at a wedding.

I asked a charming young Sydney accountant, “What do you think of feminism?” He politely froze until I told him I was campaigning against it because feminism and “attachment theory” can’t both be true.

He happily high-fived me at the end of the night and went back to Sydney — prepared from then onwards, I hope, to bag feminist theory.

Political response

I have worked for three years on how to fight feminist-inspired laws and have concluded that the best weapon is the truth.

Like any brand built on falsehoods, feminism can be discredited in an instant. How easily was Tiger Woods’ clean-living image undone by his golf club-wielding wife?

The word “mother” has gone out of fashion, but it could be effectively marketed — particularly on the basis of ground-breaking multi-disciplinary research showing its priceless value as a top-end commodity to mothers, fathers and children.

In the meantime, pro-family voters’ political priority must be to influence good politicians and replace bad ones with good ones.

In the run-up to the forthcoming Queensland election, expected to be held on March 24, voters will find flyers in their letterboxes inviting them to place last on the ballot paper those state MPs who recently voted to pass same-sex surrogacy and civil unions that violate children’s rights to both a mother and a father.

In recent years, the humble flyer appears to have swung votes by margins of between 1 and 3 per cent in various electorates, independently of state and nation-wide trends. Much more could be done with an organised grassroots pro-family force, operating along the lines of the US Tea Party. Who says people don’t vote on social issues?

I thank my close encounter with feminism (and of course my mother’s wisdom) for arming me so well for the long and fascinating fight against it.

Tempe Harvey is president of Kids First Parent Association of Australia.
URL: www.kidsfirstaustralia.com

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