The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

About That Book You Didn’t Read

Posted on | June 7, 2024 | 1 Comment

It is not my habit to criticize or argue with people in the comments, but I got a bit miffed by this today:

There’s a phenomenon called “political lesbianism.” That’s a situation where a heterosexual woman becomes so filled with feminist zeal, and political hatred of men, that she actually becomes a lesbian despite not actually being attracted to women. Her lesbianism is a political act, not a sexual or romantic one.

To which I replied curtly:

Dude, I wrote an entire BOOK about this.

This kind of thing makes me shake my head in despair. What is the point of writing about politics or culture, if your writing has so little impact that random strangers assume they are qualified to lecture you about subjects upon which your expertise is (or at least, should be) widely known?

There is, of course, a personal butt-hurt involved, an emotional pain in not getting credit for my work. But I understood, back in 2014 when I started writing about radical feminist and readers kept saying “you ought to write a book,” that such a book might be largely ignored. Why? Because everybody considers themselves to be an “expert” on feminism, even if they have never read a single book on the subject and cannot name even one important feminist author. Part of the problem that Sex Trouble was meant to address was the yawning gap between the public perception of what “feminism” is and the reality of what feminists actually advocate, especially in academic Women’s Studies programs.

That’s why I spent more than a year accumulating a library of feminist literature, including multiple anthologies used as textbooks for introductory Women’s Studies courses, books by leading professors of Women’s Studies, and hard-to-find early radical feminist tracts which — although long out of print — were foundational to the 1960s Women’s Liberation Movement, and frequently cited in footnotes of later feminist works. Let me share just this one relevant quote:

“[Charlotte Bunch’s 1972 manifesto] ‘Lesbians in Revolt’ argued one powerful and uncompromising principle: because sexism is the root of all oppression and heterosexuality upholds sexism, feminists must become lesbians and lesbians must become feminists if we are to effect a revolution. . . . To state that feminists must become lesbians assumes that lesbianism is a matter of choice and conviction, not biological conditioning or sexual behavior. Moreover, lesbians must also become feminists, that is, they must ground their sexuality in a political discourse if any social change is to occur. . . .
“Lesbian criticism of any and all varieties was constructed by flesh and bone lesbians starting in the early 1970s. For us, feminism was not a distinct discourse that spoke ‘for’ lesbians but an epistemology used by lesbians to speak for ourselves. . . . I believe it can be shown that, historically, lesbianism and feminism have been coterminous if not identical social phenomena.”

Bonnie Zimmerman, “Confessions of a Lesbian Feminist,” in Cross Purposes: Lesbians, Feminists, and the Limits of Alliance, edited by Dana Heller (1997)

Does anyone dare dispute what this feminist said more than 20 years ago? Professor Zimmerman is rather important:

She became one of the founding members of the Women’s Studies College at State University of New York Buffalo (SUNYB) in 1970. She was offered a temporary position as a lecturer at San Diego State University (SDSU) in their Women’s Studies program (the first in the country), and used this opportunity to begin teaching lesbian literature in 1979. In 1983, she became Professor of Women’s Studies at SDSU. She was President of the National Women’s Studies Association from 1998 to 1999, and acted as the Women’s Studies Department Chair at SDSU from 1986 to 1992 and again from 1995 to 1997.

Professor Zimmerman was a pioneer and recognized leader in the field of Women’s Studies, and notice who she cites as an authority on the link between heterosexuality and the oppression of women: Charlotte Bunch founded and led a feminist group known as The Furies, and her 1972 manifesto “Lesbians in Revolt” was included in a 1975 book she edited.

Guess who bought a copy of that book in 2014? Me, because I considered it essential to understanding the subject. And it proved worth the cost, as it included an essay (“Lesbians and the Class Position of Women”) by Margaret Small, who was a member of The Furies and who, perhaps not coincidentally, was a colleague of Professor Zimmerman in founding the Women’s Studies program at SUNY-Buffalo. To quote Margaret Small:  “In terms of the oppression of women, heterosexuality is the ideology of male supremacy.” Yet in 2015, this woman was actually employed by a public school system in Buncombe County, North Carolina!

Did I mention that Charlotte Bunch, who founded The Furies and edited the book that included Small’s denunciation of heterosexuality, became a distinguished academic at Rutgers University and in 1999 was honored with the Eleanor Roosevelt Award for Human Rights by President Bill Clinton? From the introduction to Sex Trouble:

Those who would attempt to separate “mainstream” feminism from the more radical aspects of its ideology cannot avoid the problem that the faculty and curricula of university Women’s Studies programs — where feminism wields the authority of an official philosophy — are disproportionately dominated by radical lesbians. This hegemonic influence is not merely manifested in the fact that outspoken lesbian activists are employed as directors and professors in Women’s Studies programs everywhere, but also plainly evident in the textbooks and readings assigned in their classrooms. Even if a moderate heterosexual feminist were to become a Women’s Studies professor, she would find it nearly impossible to assign a textbook that was not crammed with radical anti-male/anti-heterosexual readings from lesbian feminists like Charlotte Bunch, Adrienne Rich, Audre Lorde, Janice Raymond, Judith Butler and others.

So when Disney hands over the Star Wars franchise to lesbians — in order to kill the franchise, of course — I can perhaps be forgiven for saying, “I told you so.” From the moment I began exploring this subject in 2014, it became obvious that the reason why everybody was suddenly talking about feminism was part of an orchestrated operation to mainstream feminism, in order to boost Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. It was not a coincidence, to cite one obvious example, that in 2014 “Harry Potter” star Emma Watson was recruited to be the United Nations “ambassador” for feminism, promoting the various slogans and hashtags to her millions of young fans. You’d have to be a damned fool to think #HeForShe was anything other than part of a Democratic Party propaganda campaign laying the groundwork for electing Our First Female President. Most people, however, did not connect the dots, just like they didn’t connect the dots between this pro-Clinton operation and the notorious 2014 rape hoax at the University of Virginia. (“Haven Monahan” could not be reached for comment.)

Do you see how events of 2014 are connected to what’s happening now at Disney? Once you make feminism “mainstream” — and many millions of dollars were spent to do that, circa 2014-2016 — certain consequences can be expected. “We must have more women directors!” And, “We must have more LGBTQIA representation!” Next thing you know, lesbians have destroyed the Star Wars franchise, deliberately. “At Long Last, ‘The Acolyte’ Gives Us a Star Wars Series Made by a Lesbian” is the review headline at the lesbian blog Autostraddle, celebrating the destruction of a franchise (for which Disney paid $4 billion — that’s billion with a “b” — in 2012) by making a series that includes exactly zero white men in the cast, and which has exactly zero heterosexual romance plot-points.

Was this specific outcome predicted in Sex Trouble? No, but as I kept saying: Feminism Is a Totalitarian Movement to Destroy Civilization as We Know It. The destruction of your favorite movie? Not a coincidence.

Maybe now would be a good time to read that book.


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