It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Uncomfortable Questions about Feminism and the CIA

page: 1

log in


posted on Apr, 23 2012 @ 07:57 PM
I want to preface by stating that I believe that the feminist movements of the nineteenth, twentieth and twenty-first centuries have been predicated on highly legitimate concerns. The right to vote is obvious, but the issue of inequality goes deeper than that. Male domination actually hurts everyone, because ALL domination hurts everyone. I don't want to begin with an anti-feminist diatribe. Quite the contrary. I support womens' rights because when one person's rights are abrogated then all rights are abrogated.

I also have to say that radical factions within feminism promised a lot. Domination was supposed to be overthrown. So was capitalism. So was racism. So was environmental destruction. So was the hierarchical family. So was the abuse of children. All of these are alive and well. The second, fourth and last are doing better than ever. Feminism as a movement targeting the domination of men as men has succeeded beyond the wildest hopes of Steinem and other pioneers. Males have lost considerable earning power compared to women. Yet, the broader radical promises of feminist radicalism have not born fruit. The working class is more oppressed than ever before, even by late nineteenth century standards.

I believe that the issue of the CIA funding Gloria Steinem and certain branches of feminism needs to be considered. I am loathe to discuss the issue, because I have always supported real equality and I do not agree with a lot of the rhetoric around this issue. Both sides of the culture war seem to have been funded by CIA and military sources, not just one. The reaction against feminism, the Christian Right, is deeply military and CIA from the beginning. Perhaps that reaction was intended. I agree that feminism was based on legitimate issues, just that those legitimate issues become sidestepped when the ire of a movement is directed downward, toward working class males and powerless groups. The Old Left of the thirties, for all of its faults, never would have tolerated that for one minute.

Radical feminism promised a society of males liberated to explore their feminine side. We are far from that ideal. Most of us males are more imprisoned in maleness than ever. Organized sports, organized religion, and the military are stronger than ever before. All of them serve to keep males bound in maleness, and do their job well. I do not blame feminism for this. What I would say is that its gains have not helped these matters, contrary to what it promised. The gains of feminism helped women, particularly white women in the suburbs, but they did not transform society from war to peace, from corporations to cooperatives, or from environmental destruction to the liberation of animals and plants. It is standard that women were only liberated to the extent that they too became imprisoned in maleness. The changes in society from the old to the new have meant that the military-industrial complex and the prison-industrial complex swallow up daughters as well as sons to fill jails or to serve in the hell-hole of the year (Iraq, et al).

The battle of the sexes split the progressive movements of the sixties, and helped to lead the way for neo-conservatism and Reaganomics. Again, the fault is not all on one side. But, High Hefner did not promise the transformation of society. He was honest about being a sexist, exploitative jerk. Radical feminists did promise societal transformation. Many of those (quasi-)radical feminists are still with us, like Gloria Alred who mysteriously seemed to throw Limbaugh a lifeline by calling for his arrest after the "whore" incident, thereby making a sinking ship some kind of hero of free speech instead of the doomed dinosaur he should have been. I can understand that honest feminists do not want to look at the ramifications of the CIA funding feminist organizations in the Sixties. Most are sincere. But, it is sincere people and not liars who often make the errors that neutralize social change. I cannot but consider that Alred might be playing a role in the manipulation of society, a manipulation of feminists in particular, and doing her job well.

Class inequality is strong, and our society has become a society of prisons, social darwinism, and brutal joblessness. I blame males for this, not women, particularly males who vote for politicians who target unions and working people. Again, I do not blame women or feminists. I blame my own gender for being stupid, for being intellectually ignorant, lazy, venal and allowing ourselves to become corrupt. What I would say of American feminism, however, is that it accepts the system and its logic. Most of its issues are co-opted. I appreciate the fear of what Romney would mean for women (and dogs who would have to ride on top now), but I also have to say that the modern Democratic Party has done little to nothing for workers. Again, looking at the old left of the thirties, for all of their faults and those faults I do not deny, they would not have tolerated this for one minute.

I dedicate this thread to an exploration of how gender manipulation of BOTH males and females serves the elite, the 1%. Please do not make this an exercise in misogyny. This needs to be an honest exploration of how both genders have been manipulated. Let me state for the record that no-fault divorce has been a real killer for both genders. It has helped to shatter the bonds that would allow the Winston's and Julia's of our society to stand together against Big Brother. How many of you have had your spouse's leave you because you went beyond the pale and began exploring the real truth?

I am asking the questions here. I am not in favor of Ozzy and Harriet because they never existed. I am in favor of honest discussion. Please let it begin.

new topics

log in