- - Tuesday, November 27, 2018

What passes for mainstream feminism these days is a one-size-fits-all kind of mentality that is well represented by the misshapen clothes of “The Handmaid’s Tale,” a hallmark fictional tale in which women are expected to obey with alacrity and subservience. In today’s narrative, it is she-who-must-be-obeyed that is making the most noise as mainstream feminists complain that women just are not doing what they are told — as, in election after election, women continue to think for themselves.

Case in point is Guardian columnist Moira Donegan, who recently found it “racist” for 49 percent of white women to support the party of President Trump, as well as other women across demographics who many assume must identify with left-leaning social policy, beginning and sometimes ending, with abortion. The anger among the sisterhood stems largely from the left’s inability to grasp that fact that women are thinking for themselves, embracing work and family, rather than an agenda that defines the height of female power as the legal ability to end life.

This cognitive dissonance was on full display during the highly contentious events surrounding the confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh, as abortion access was a shrill rallying cry for senators who refused to consider a pro-life worldview. With the possibility of President Trump appointing even more jurists during his tenure, women’s loyalties will continue to be called into question leading us to the kind of name-calling that if it came from a man would be career ending.

In a recent Vox article, for example, women’s failures to deliver for the Democratic agenda is because we have “never been a reliable voting bloc” because we don’t bend the knee to our “gender.” So women are only reliable when they act in favor of policies designed to stamp out the thing that makes us unique? And who are these people who insist they know what my family needs more than I do?

I would argue that in fact, we are voting in line with our true nature — embracing the fact that we can create life, families, businesses, art, music, science and all manner of things, and that we want a government that empowers women in all their choices, rather than insisting that the choice must be for abortion first.

The abortion lobby and its allies argue tirelessly that without abortion, women just don’t have the capacity to fully succeed in society. These modern day misogynists have gone from a Victorian model in which women were told to stay home because they can’t balance work and family to today’s prejudiced view in which women are told to stay at work, because they can’t balance career and family.

In fact, for Planned Parenthood’s new president, Dr. Leana Wen, abortion seems to represents some kind of sign of social status and access to what’s best about society, telling CNN in a recent interview, “I say that we should all have the freedom to exercise our own choice recognizing that that choice is predicated on privilege.”

What kind of freedom is it to end life? And shouldn’t we respect those women whose choice is to invest in the raising of a child?

Year after year, polls indicate an unwavering support for life by at least half of our population (women included). And in even greater numbers, Americans embrace limits for abortion, such as at five months of pregnancy.

Yet the abortion lobby insists that women in particular, and society at large, really wants more abortion — despite the fact that in the United States abortion is legal through all nine months, for any reason at all, and sometimes with taxpayer subsidies.

In the last presidential election, an appeal was made to women voters with the most pro-abortion pitch yet and it failed, leading some to argue that an overemphasis on abortion may have hurt Hilary Clinton’s candidacy. Immediately feminist leaders raced to stamp out the heresy.

Journalist Jill Filipovic, author of the book “The H-Spot: The Feminist Pursuit of Happiness,” chastised Democratic Party officials who pondered whether radical support for abortion was a problem and whether pro-life Democrats, people like my family of origin, should feel welcome. Rejecting “an abortion litmus test,” she wrote, “That’s not just an insult to the women (and men) who make up the Democrats’ base. It’s a fool’s errand.”

But maybe, before the next election or the next U.S. Supreme Court vacancy, those female advocates donning the red and white coverings should consider a makeover, as women just don’t want to be told that they must desire the end of preborn life to fit in with their feminist sisters. Loyalty to abortion over all other concerns does not reflect many women’s priorities, in part because it fails to inspire and fails to address the real problems women must face. Like all people, women must be empowered with tools to achieve at school, at work and at home.

First-wave feminists did not make limiting women’s choices to abortion the centerpiece of their agenda. They stood for options for all. As Susan B. Anthony said, “It was we, the people; not we, the white male citizens; nor yet we, the male citizens, who formed the Union Men, their rights and nothing more; women, their rights and nothing less.”

• Kristan Hawkins is president of Students for Life of America.

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