- The Washington Times - Saturday, August 28, 2004

Turning her back on a strict Catholic upbringing, Germaine Greer became feminist’s leading avatar of free love. As a graduate student at Cambridge University, she often posed nude for underground magazines, and indulged in group sex escapades she would later describe as a “bloodsport.”

In 1970, Miss Greer published “The Female Eunuch.” The book claimed sexual repression of women robs them of the energy they need to attain gender independence and selfhood. Hence, sexual license is the sure path to female liberation.

Many years and several abortions later, Miss Greer finally renounced her advocacy of sexual debauchery. But in typical feminist fashion, she recanted her own promiscuity not by offering an apology but by blaming it all on men.

As an international best-seller, “The Female Eunuch” influenced the sexual mores of an entire generation of women. Thanks to the likes of Madonna, Britney, and Janet Jackson, Miss Greer’s free love philosophy is beginning to permeate our culture.

Just look at how women parade around these days. The examples I’m about to describe are not what I read about, saw on TV, or heard third-hand from the neighborhood gossip. These are incidents I personally saw in the last several months.

At the office, well-educated women don the sheerest brassieres and tight-fitting sweaters. Do they really need to prove to their co-workers they don’t have inverted nipples?

A singles event is held at a community fair. Each participant is given a number to post on his or her lapel, so interested persons can make contact. One young lady decides to cut to the chase — she pastes the number directly over her crotch.

The epidemic of immodesty has spread to teenage girls. At a girls’ high school soccer game, a close game ends. Rather than walk to the nearby dressing room, the girls strip down to their sports bras before hundreds of shocked onlookers.

For its fall fashion line-up, J.C. Penny’s now sells girls T-shirts sporting these slogans: “I’m hot,” “What’s with those twins?,” and “Pick me up, coffee shop.” Right across the aisle, pubescent girls can buy thong, hipster, or bikini underwear — all three for just $12.60.

And then there are untold numbers of women who can’t seem to find a single top in their wardrobe that covers their brassiere. Or they don’t realize that if they wish to don a fluorescent pink bra, a thin white T-shirt really won’t do.

I could give other examples, but I think you get the point.

What makes this discussion surreal is how these women combine narcissism, victimology and pop psychology to justify their new-found lewdness.

The other day I came across an internet discussion in which a woman with a DD cup admitted to coaching her soccer team while wearing a tank-top shirt. Referring to her half-exposed breasts as “a symbol of my embraced femininity,” she feigned amazement so many women asked her to cover up.

Going on the offensive, she said she had discovered a new variety of sexual harassment, in which “women are sexualized and degraded by other women who fear their confidence.” To make her case bullet-proof, she wrapped herself in the mantle of victimhood: “I just don’t feel that I should be subject to disrespect because of jealousy.”

So why do we allow a growing number of sexually precocious women to degrade our public morality? It seems we are being seduced by moral equivalence and non-judgmentalism. As a result, decency is being evicted from the public arena.

Professional men don’t parade around the office wearing underwear so tight co-workers can figure out their religious upbringing. And men don’t walk down the street with their flies open, proclaiming it a symbol of their “embraced masculinity.”

Now, the Axis of Eve, a women’s rights group, plans a mass panty flash at the upcoming Republic National Convention. Event planner Natasha Eve is organizing this to demand “accountability in government.”

Please, Ms. Eve, keep your drawers on. People have better things to do than look at women’s underwear.


Mr. Roberts is a Washington-area writer.

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