Carol Platt Liebau

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Ah, Sunday commentary in The Los Angeles Times. Here is a predictable piece, seething with outrage over the statements by Lawrence Summers made three weeks ago.

It's typical feminist ranting, full of the usual snide asides:

If that sounds snotty, I mean it to be.

If that sounds like a cheap shot, I mean it to be.

I wonder even now if a few more bellows of rage and a lot less tact might yet be in order, that we need to remind the world also that, yes, we are nice — but not that nice.

And if that sounds angry, I mean it to be.

Earth to this author: Feminists' problem isn't that they're too nice, too often. Trust me on that one.

Feminists' problem is summed up with this statement from the piece:

One gender gained the power position and has been really, really reluctant to share the space. . . . In our civilized times, muscle mass isn't that necessary. Why use physical force when other techniques are so effective: put-downs, dismissals, suggestions that, geez, we'd love to see women advance in those challenging intellectual fields — if only they were up to it.

She goes on to note that not all men are the enemy -- some were as unhappy with Lawrence Summers as she was. But for the most part, they are hostile creatures, ready with the "put-downs" and "dismissals."

That's not even the point though. Underlying her one concession to the fact that not all men are evil is the telltale sign of the typical left-wing feminist: Anger and grievance.

Certainly, unjustified discrimination is always wrong, and the people who perpetuate it must be stopped. But to opine that men have been "really reluctant to share the space" when it comes to power shows her ideological blinders. No, men are "really reluctant" to share the space in, say, the Taliban's Afghanistan.

Here, you have some men who are pigs (not unlike President Clinton) -- but, in general, men treat women in the USA quite well. We are, after all, their wives, daughters, sisters -- and bosses. When women outperform men, they are not only tolerated; they are celebrated.

Too bad people like this author didn't save some of their indignation for people like President Clinton or the Taliban. Guess it's easier to get mad at the "easy" targets like Lawrence Summers -- and it's easier to get mad than to do the work that disproves any hypothesis about differentials between men and women in the sciences. This article is nothing but grievance on the cheap.


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