Julie Coates, Nine Shift co-author, helps at-risk teenage boys, whom she occasionally and affectionately and out-of-hearing-distance calls "my hoodlums."
Recently she was talking with Jesse, and asked him whether his English teacher was good. "No," Jesse replied, "She's a feminist." Translation: she's biased against boys.
This was the first time I had heard the term feminist with this connotation. I'm a feminist. Julie's a feminist. Being a feminist means being for equal rights, equal opportunity, equal pay. How could a teacher be biased against boys?
Another one of the bankrupt notions about the late 20th century is this second-stage ideology of some feminists. The first-stage was the equal rights of Betty Friedan and others in the 1950s and 1960s. This second-latter-day-stage of feminism holds that boys are bad, that the reason girls are being held back in any arena is because of discrimination, and the reason why boys are being held back is because they are lazy.
Fifty years ago Prof. Higgins sang in My Fair Lady, "why can't a woman be more like man." Nowadays, the solution is - - in the quoted words of Gloria Steinem - - "we need to raise boys like we raise girls."
Harvard President Lawrence Summer's' comments suggesting there are biological differences between the sexes that have implications for learning was met with a hail of wordfire from so-called feminist organizations.
When we try to work with teachers and schools on discovering why boys get worse grades than girls, we get met with refusals and stonewalling. The people most upset at these women are other women. Christine Somers, author of The War Against Boys, is really pissed at NOW.
Our neighbor grew up in Germany in the 1930s and 1940s. One night the police took away another of Julie's hoodlums in handcuffs. The boy's father is an alcoholic and locked his son out of the house, so the boy came to our house. Our neighbor saw the police-handcuff incident at our house and had nightmarish flashbacks about the Gestapo.
Peter Zohrab of the New Zealand Equality Education Foundation claims to have invented the Feminazi term around 1990.
Regardless, denying neurological learning differences between boys and girls is desperately wrong, and does absolutely nothing to help either girls or boys. For example, in the grades issue, the justification that it makes up for girls getting lower pay in the workplace, OR that it helps women close the pay gap, just doesn't add up. The pay gap has been stuck at 75% for many years now, and in fact last year it slipped back a percentage or two.
This Us versus Us struggle, like trains-lanes and office-telework and others, will continue for another tough 5 years before the 21st century-ions start winning over the last century-ites.