Category Archives: Undead sexist cliches

I read Jekyll. Now I learn about Hyde

I’ve been a fan of the late Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Darkover books (and her better known Mists of Avalon) for years.
That said, I’m somehow not surprised that in addition to covering up her husband’s pedophilia, her daughter recently stated that MZB herself was an abuser (quoted at the link), both sexual and physical.
I’m not surprised because I know just from watching the world that being a good writer or editor (she gave me a brutal critique of a piece I’d submitted to her fantasy magazine, but it was quite accurate) doesn’t mean you’re not a horrible person. Being charming and funny doesn’t mean you’re not an abuser. I’ve known three women over the years whose husbands were abusive. There was only one where I thought on learning the news “No, that doesn’t surprise me.” (I didn’t think he was abusive, but he was kind of a dick). It surprises me a lot less now. Mr. (or Ms.) Hyde) can present a positive face to the world and be a beast when behind closed doors; that’s just the way people are.
As with Woody Allen, I’m not sure efforts to find the kink in her books are really practical. It doesn’t have to show. Mr. Hyde can … hide. Though as with Allen, it’s hard to not think about this when you read an author’s works (I’ll see what I think when I reread them some day).
All that being said, radishreviews points out that a lot of people did know and did nothing. If not the kind of overt cover-up I’ve just written about, it was a similar impulse: The abuser’s one of us. Are we going to turn our backs on him? Let’s just keep the kids away and everything will be fine. Only it wasn’t.
One final note, on this story about Bradley: comparing her to Lewis Carroll (AKA Charles Dodgson) is ridiculous. There’s never been any evidence that Dodgson had any romantic/sexual interest in Alice Liddell (the prototype for Alice in the books). There is no evidence that Dodgson was interested in children at all (he photographed adults as well as children and had relationships—friendship at least—with many adult women). Nor were there ever any accusations. That doesn’t mean it couldn’t have happened … but unlike MZB there’s no reason to think it did (the Smithsonian article the Guardian links to makes that clear).

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Sex is a beautiful cathedral that liberals want to demolish. Who knew?

Jonah Goldberg’s new piece on women voters actually includes a good insight (as pointed out at the link, which is not direct): “In a relatively short period of time, legal and cultural equality has expanded — albeit not uniformly or perfectly — to blacks, women, and gays. We are a more heterodox society in almost every way. As a result, many of our customs, norms, and terms no longer line up neatly with lived-reality. Remember customs emerge as intangible tools to solve real needs. When the real needs change, the customs must either adapt or die … You can call it ‘political correctness’ that Americans stopped calling black people ‘negroes.’ But that wouldn’t make the change wrong or even objectionable.”
That’s an encouraging acknowledgment, even though it’s stuffed into a mess of a column that runs as follows:
•Liberals are liars. Everything they say is just a cover for the real agenda, whereas conservatives are completely upfront and straightforward. For example, liberals quote a lot of science because that’s the new voice of authority, not because they believe in science (so presumably conservatives who believe birth control is abortion even if it’s not scientific are on some higher plane).
•Because society has changed, liberalism and feminism now look like they make sense: “Democrats recognize this, which is why they’ve cynically exploited changes in family structure, female labor participation, and reproductive technology and declared that Republicans have declared war on women. It’s not remotely true, but it is effective.”
•As part of this scheme, the left rejects traditional male-female relationships, even though they have nothing better to offer: “Progressives are steadily dismantling the beautiful cathedrals of traditional manners and customs, arguing that they’re too Baroque, too antiquated. They use the sledgehammer of liberation rhetoric to destroy the old edifices, but their fidelity to liberty is purely rhetorical. In place of the old cathedrals they build supposedly functional, modern, and utilitarian codes of conduct. But these Brutalist codes are not only unlovely, they are often more prudish than traditional approaches.”
•The solution for right-wingers is to preserve the cathedrals but “why not argue for some long overdue updating and retrofitting? I guarantee you more women prefer a modified version of the traditional process of wooing, courting, and dating before sex than the “modern” schizophrenic system of getting drunk enough for a same-day hook up but not so inebriated to forget to get a signature on the consent form. Traditional notions of romance and respect are far better tools than the mumbo-jumbo campus feminists have to offer. The problem is that the mumbo-jumbo feminists are fighting largely uncontested.”
As pointed out at the link, it’s hard to see how this plays into actual politics as Goldberg is so vague and metaphorical. I’m inclined to take the subtext as a suggestion that Repubs should stop dumping on the “Beyonce voters” and demonizing single women for having sex—but that’s actually a controversial position so I can see why Goldberg wouldn’t come out and say it. If he is saying it.
Then again, maybe he’s trying to sound like he’s open minded while recyling usual right-wing cliches about there being no war on women, drunken hookups (the George Will view of campus sex) and that feminists are just screaming mumbo-jumbo. His point about those stately cathedrals sounds a lot like the mutterings of Suzanne Venker and other antifeminists about how feminism has made us all miserable by rejecting chivalry (or about how Downton Abbey was a better era for women). And how suggesting that people actually get consent before doing the nasty is a Bad Idea.
And then there’s the point about the duplicitous liberals and how they’re catering to women out of self-interest (another staple). To which I say, so what? If Democrats are willing to protect women’s rights to win votes while Republicans vote against them out of high-minded principle, then Democrats are still the better bet for people who support women’s rights.
The issue isn’t whether right-wing Repubs are sincere or not. The issue is, they support bad policies either way.

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John C. Wright attempts to explain beauty

But as this shades into politics, I’m not tagging it for SFWA’s twitter feed.
Wright’s thesis is that beauty uplifts the soul, but modern art has rejected objective standards of beauty and therefore sucks. And this is part of the left-wing attack on America because it weakens the human spirit and gives power to the oppressor: “Imagine two men: one stands in a bright house, tall with marble columns adorned with lavish art, splendid with shining glass images of saints and heroes, mementos of great sorrow and great victories both past and promised. A polyphonic choir raises their voices in golden song, singing an ode to joy. The other stands in a slum with peeling wallpaper, or a roofless ruin infested with rats, hemmed by feces-splashed gray concrete walls lurid with jagged graffiti, chalked with swearwords and flickering neon signs advertising strip joints. Rap music thuds nearby, ear-splitting, yowling obscenities. A bureaucrat approaches each man and orders him to do some routine and routinely humiliating task, such as pee in a cup to be drug tested, or be fingerprinted, or suffer an anal cavity search, or surrender his weapons, or his money, or his name. Which of the two men is more likely to take a stand on principle not to submit?”

Oh, and we leftwingers also object because ” To have taste implies that some cultures produce more works of art and better than others, and this raises the uncomfortable possibility that love of beauty is Eurocentric, or even racist.”

Having spent several hours in Boston’s Museum of Fine Art I can safely say that love of beauty has nothing to do with European culture. Check out Egypt. Or below, Iraq (from centuries past) and Japan.
iraq lion
He also brings up Marcel Duchamp’s notorious placing of a urinal in a museum. But Duchamp wasn’t holding it up as an example of beauty, he was making a point about how placing something in a museum automatically makes us see the item differently—even a urinal.
Now, as for his specific example of the two individuals, I agree they might have a different reaction. But that’s going to be because the guy in the fancy house is apparently a wealthy, powerful man (judging from his house) with the attorneys to stare down crazy government demands. The poor man in the gutter doesn’t have that option and quite possibly he’ll need to be drug-tested to qualify for unemployment or food stamps (something conservatives are very keen on. Whereas if the guy in the beautiful house were a government contractor with a million-dollar deal, they’d be outraged at the idea of testing him).
Nor have I noticed much conservative enthusiasm for, say, funding museums so poor people can get in cheap or free (Boston MFA is $25 a pop). Or in general doing anything to help the poor person (who you’ll note is surrounded by rap music. Dang, it’s almost like Wright is implying the person is not er, Eurocentric). Or even working on giving us a functional economy.
More generally, Wright’s argument that lefties are all anti-beauty seems based on nothing but stereotypes. As the excellent art history Visual Shock points out, the New Deal promoted a lot of attractive public art. Stalin despised modern art, as did Hitler. The Vietnam Wall, I think has an undeniable beauty but it was condemned by a number of conservatives. Art doesn’t track politics terribly neatly.
I’d argue with his views on art more generally, but I’ve better things to do (there’s plenty of discussion in the comments at the link, which is not directly to Wright). So I’ll link to another post ripping into Wright’s advice on great sex:
•Me Tarzan. You Jane. If Tarzan not dominant, sex bad. Wives want to submit to their husbands, honestly.
•Using birth control means it isn’t real sex.

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The “Beyonce voter” and other links

It’s fascinating, in a way, how conservatives keep trotting out the idea that single women (now christened the Beyonce voters) vote for Democrats because they want stuff: “They depend on government because they’re not depending on their husbands. They need contraception, health care, and they love to talk about equal pay.” Because, of course, if it was the good old days when the women got married and only worked for pin money, then they wouldn’t yap about discrimination so much.
Of course, a government requirement employee health insurance cover contraception isn’t government paying for stuff—that insurance is part of workers’ pay packages.
And even in the 1950s, there were lots of women who worked to support their families or themselves, who actually needed the money. More so now, when it’s a lot harder to make ends meet on one income (not that you’ll see conservatives worrying about that any time soon).
And how exactly would depending on government make women any different from for-profit prisons, military contractors or Tennessee Representative Stephen Fincher (who collects millions in farm subsidies while condemning people on food stamps). Oh, wait, because they’re women. And women voting is just bad.
•Many of the rich still think they’re oppressed.
•Faith Street points out that while some types of birth control could hypothetically function as an abortifacent, blocking birth control increases the number of women and children who’ll die, not hypothetically.
Personally I’ve always thought that if you’re not taking birth control to abort a fertilized egg but it happens that way, it counts as a miscarriage, not an abortion, just like if you took any medicine which had that side effect. Of course, I imagine there are right-to-lifers who think women shouldn’t take those either.
•The Baffler reports that Democrats are showing little enthusiasm for tackling income inequality.
•Kansas enacted slashing tax cuts to boost the economy. The economy tanked. Gov. Sam Brownback is as wrong about economics as he is about rape.
•I was planning to write about this piece on how support for gay marriage and birth control is making it impossible to be a good Christian in public life, but Slacktivist beat me to it and said it better.
I will add, though, that while writer Alan Noble focuses on the rights of businesses not to cater gay marriage or provide what they believe are abortifacents (even if they’re not) that’s a selective view of the debate. If the Supreme Court ruled tomorrow that no business was ever required to work a gay wedding or serve a gay customer, I don’t believe for a minute that the anti-gay activists would stop pushing against gay marriage. Nor will the Hobby Lobby exemption stop the push against birth control.
•Perhaps it’s unsurprising (oh, it’s definitely unsurprising) that as trans rights become more visible as an issue, the right wing starts to freak out.
•Citibank will pay out $7 billion to settle mortgage fraud charges. Meanwhile, a legal battle between AmEx and the DOJ could affect the credit-card universe.

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Todd Akin: Republicans are repressing rape apologists to win women’s votes!

Todd Akin, the politician who lost re-election after claiming rape can’t get women pregnant, now has a book out. In his memoir, he insists what he said about rape was right (though of course he really, really, really hates rape) but he was bullied by the Republican establishment into apologizing for his remarks. Of course, as Salon notes at the link (hat tip to Echidne), that would mean far from the proud Christian activist he wants us to see him as, he’s actually a mendacious politician just as willing to lie about his fundamental beliefs as all the rest.
I doubt (and hope I’m right) this will lead to a rebirth of his political career, but I wouldn’t be surprised if he became a successful speaker or talk-show host. He is, after all, saying what lots of conservatives believe (as noted in the link at the top, “rape won’t get you pregnant” has been a staple belief in evangelical right-to-life circles), and in the current atmosphere of right-wing political fervor claiming that you’re a purer conservative than the other guys never seems to hurt (and it’s now a staple of right-wing punditry).
And while we’re on the subject of the war on women and those who wage it, Hobby Lobby, some lawmakers are trying to pass a new bill that will get around the Supreme Court’s ruling. Unfortunately, the odds of getting anything through both houses of Congress are minimal.
At Slate, Lithwick and West point out the Hobby Lobby decision is even more of a mess than it first appeared. Part of Justice Alito’s rationale was that the administration had offered religious non-profits a way out of participating, by signing a form stating their religious objections (after which the employees can get birth control coverage, but without the employer providing it). As this imposes less of a burden on religious objectors, Alito’s opinion states, the government should have gone with that option for Hobby Lobby and other “closely held corporations.”
However some groups have insisted that even filling out a form is a burden on their beliefs: Once they do that, the women are going to get contraceptives, so it still violates their principles. And as noted in the Slate article, the Supreme Court has issued an injunction in one such case so that the organization (Wheaton College) won’t have to comply with a lower-court order saying Not a Burden. So after ruling for Hobby Lobby because there was a better alternative, the court has now thrown out the alternative.
No surprise the ACLU and other groups have dropped their support for the Employee Non-Discrimination Act, which prohibits discrimination against employees over sexual orientation or gender identity. ENDA has a religious exemption and after Hobby Lobby, the concern is the Supremes will turn that into a huge gaping loophole.


Filed under Politics, Undead sexist cliches

Hobby Lobby fallout

Defenders of the Hobby Lobby decision pointed out the company only wanted an out for four types of birth control it thought were abortifacents. Incorrectly, but Alito’s ruling said that was irrelevant as long as they sincerely believed the methods caused abortion.
Unsurprisingly, despite Alito’s proclamation this ruling doesn’t apply to serious medical issues such as vaccination or blood transfusions, it does apply to other types of birth control. The court has ordered lower courts to review several cases in which Catholic-owned businesses want to opt out from providing any birth-control coverage. Government requests for review in similar cases (where lower courts ruled in favor of the company) got shot down.
As Echidne says, giving businesses more power to discriminate based on religion is bound to work badly for women, as all three Abrahamic religions have a strong anti-woman bias on the right.

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Megan McArdle, Justice Alito and Hobby Lobby’s rights

Roy Edroso catches libertarian Megan McArdle (some of her past deep insights here and here) blithely dismissing critics of the Hobby Lobby win: Isn’t demanding your employer buy you birth control no different from demanding he buy you a car or some furniture? If an employer refuses to provide free toothpaste, would you sue him for condemning you to have cavities?

As pointed out at Edroso’s post (and in comments thereon), the obvious difference is that Hobby Lobby isn’t being asked to give employees something for free. Health insurance is part of their pay. Hobby Lobby is simply being told that the coverage has to meet minimum standards, which include providing birth control for women who want it (I imagine if they wanted to pay in company scrip McArdle’s argument would be “Saying you have to be paid in dollars is like demanding you be paid in gold!”).

She also argues that all the decision really does is say Hobby Lobby’s owners should be treated just like a small properitoer, why should that be a big deal? Wow, let’s think … could it be because being a corporation offers Hobby Lobby legal shielding from lawsuits and debt that small proprietor’s don’t have? Because a corporation is, in fact, legally different from a small proprietor?

That same issue is part of what makes Alito’s majority opinion a bad one. As noted in the Edroso post, Alito states that corporations don’t have a legal existence apart from their owners: “Corporations, ‘separate and apart from’ the human beings who own, run, and are employed by them, cannot do anything at all.”

Yet if Hobby Lobby gets sued, the law clearly says that the corporation (or any other) clearly does have a separate existence. If the company can’t pay the lawsuit or settle its debts, the owners don’t make up the difference (there are legal exceptions that pierce the corporate shield, but they’re exceptions). Unlike a sole proprietor (either McArdle, despite years of writing about economics, never learned this, or she is fudging the facts somewhat).

It’s not all about McArdle, of course. Edroso also catches a libertarian explaining the solution is to dump Obamacare and “unleash market forces to lower soaring costs without resorting to price controls or rationing” Because, of course, market forces did such an awesome job picking up the 40 million uninsured Americans around prior to Obamacare. And if people can’t afford to pay for the medical treatment they need, libertarians and conservatives won’t count that as rationing.

While I’ve never agreed with libertarians, years ago I had a certain respect for them. Their position usually ran that yes, in a completely unregulated market, bad things will happen but in the long run, it works out. I don’t believe that an unregulated market will work out well for most people, but at least that view acknowledged some people would get screwed. Now “unleash market forces” is like magic: Bad results? People losing out? Don’t be silly, everyone’s getting a pony.

Someone in the comments also pointed out the Hobby Lobby situation is precisely the bogeyman opponents of Obamacare raised when the bill was going through Congress: What if the government appoints some panel that won’t let your doctor give you the treatment you want? As common with libertarians, if it’s a business that does the same thing, that’s fine.
On the same topic:

•Ruth Bader Ginsberg is much less confident than Alito the genie of a universal religious exemption can be kept in the bottle. Here are some points from her dissent.

•Scott Lemieux looks at the argument the birth-control requirement imposes an unreasonable burden on Hobby Lobby.

•Digby wonders why Hobby Lobby feels it’s morally complicit in its employees using birth control—after all, gun stores aren’t usually considered complicit in shootings?

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Hobby Lobby triumphant and other links

By this time you’ve probably heard that Hobby Lobby won its Supreme Court case (and I notice from the old link that Dahlia Lithwick predicted the vote breakdown). The significant points being, according to Samuel Alito (writing the majority opinion) it doesn’t matter whether IUDs and other birth control are actually abortifacents as long as Hobby Lobby sincerely believes they are; the government can and should work around this by paying for birth control directly; the ruling only applies to “closely held corporations”; and this ruling only applies to religious objections to contraception and specifically isn’t granting the same right to people who object to vaccination, blood transfusions or other medical treatments.
As noted in this linkpost, Lithwick’s discussion, Daily Beast and Slate, closely-held corporations employ around 60 million people so this could affect millions. And it’s entirely possible that Ruth Bader Ginsberg is right in her dissent: Alito can assert this is narrowly tailored as much as he wants, but he doesn’t really offer a logical reason it can’t apply elsewhere. And while he also says flat-out it can’t be used to justify racial discrimination, he pointedly doesn’t bring up discriminating against women or gays (you know, the unserious kind of discrimination).
So very sexist, and potentially worse is in the wings. In other news …

Meriam Ibrahim of Sudan was condemned to death for being Christian when her father was Muslim. At Slacktivist, Fred Clark points out not only are laws that cripple religious freedom this way wrong, they’re bad for the faith they’re supposedly protecting: If everyone’s forced to stay in Islam by law, are they truly faithful?

•The Prime Minister of Morocco sounds a lot like an American conservative in insisting the world is better off if women stay at home. Echidne looks at his speech here.

•The Supreme Court shoots down Massachusetts’ buffer zone around abortion clinics.

•LGM justifiably mocks a pundit who finds a new reason to object to minimum-wage increases, taxes on high earners and protecting the environment—those ideas are from the sixties! How dated! The Republicans are the ones with fresh ideas! Which is a fair point, if you ignore political paranoia about the UN that I was reading as a tween (that’s a looooong time ago) and an enthusiasm for 1800s economics and women staying home. Yes, all that stuff is very fresh.

•And to prove that having new ideas isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, we have Kevin Williamson arguing that if the Affordable Care Act can make people replace bad health insurance with better policies, why can’t the government force everyone in shitty towns to move to San Francisco?

Rape apologist Rod Dreher is shocked, shocked and appalled that “Vice President Joe Biden declared Tuesday that protecting gay rights is a defining mark of a civilized nation and must trump national cultures and social traditions,” adding that “The mark of a civilized nation. Well. Let it be noted that as far as the Obama administration is concerned, traditional Christianity, Judaism, and Islam are vestiges of barbarism.”
Actually, no. The White House didn’t say “silencing people who condemn gays,” it said “protecting gay rights” (Dreher makes it clear he doesn’t see a difference). Sounds fair to me. And it’s not as if “Christianity” as a body condemns gays—plenty of churches and individual Christians support gay rights (I assume the same is true of Judaism and Islam, but I don’t know).
And frankly this sounds way too close to the logic used in defense of slavery and segregation: It’s our culture, it’s our tradition, are you saying we’re uncivilized, that’s a slur on my honor!

•At least one VP at General Motors may have known about the Chevy Cobalt’s defective ignition switches (they can turn off when you don’t want them to) nine years ago.

•A company with an app that lets drivers auction off parking (you’re ready to pull out, see what someone will pay you to wait until they get there) says it will fight San Francisco, which has told the company it can’t make a profit off public parking.

•The new Six Strikes copyright-protection system is supposed to reduce lawsuits and the threat of them. Some copyright trolls apparently hope to use it to find more people to see.


Filed under Politics, Undead sexist cliches

Never mind rape victims, George Will’s the one who’s being persecuted!

As I mentioned earlier this month, George Will has a simple explanation for the growing number of reported campus rapes. It’s the hookup culture plus the fact colleges have made it so cool to claim you were raped: “when they make victimhood a coveted status that confers privileges, victims proliferate.”
Will does not explain what he thinks the privileges are—a slot on the next Bachelorette? They all get a pony? The men they accuse will be castrated without trial? Possibly he’s just playing the standard right-wing theme that any minority who claims to be persecuted is playing “the victim card.” (much like sexual harassment is something lawyers made up).
Or maybe it’s just the standard rape-apologist claim that rape is what women cry when they’ve had sex and decide they wish they hadn’t, only updated with references to hookups. And if a slut goes around having casual sex, well
Echidne points out what a line of bull this is and also links to Will’s defense (this is a quote from the video, whichI should admit I haven’t watched): “indignation is the default position of certain people in civic discourse. They go from a standing start to fury in about 30 seconds. I think it has something to do with the internet… it erased the barriers of entry to public discourse — that’s a good thing. Unfortunately, the downside of this — there’s a downside to everything — is that, among the barriers of entry that have been reduced, is you don’t have to be able to read, write, or think. You can just come in and shout and call names and carry on.”
Yes, because writing about the “coveted status” of rape victims certainly doesn’t indicate a lack of thought. Or name-calling. He sounds a lot like some anti-gay pundits who feel that saying gays are anti-God, anti-Jesus and possibly pedophiles is part of a perfectly reasonable discussion; it’s when people criticize them and say they’re narrow-minded bigots that things are getting over the top.
Just bite me, Mr. Will.
•Aero warns that the ruling against its TV-antenna service is bad, bad, bad for the tech industry. A Slate columnist agrees.
•LGM on another Supreme Court ruling, regarding recess appointments.
•Johan Goldberg is shocked that people on the left think Dick Cheney and other Bush cabinet members have discredited themselves as experts on Iraq. He actually has one good point, that some of the members of Obama’s administration supported the war, so are they discredited from opinions too?
But then he goes on to explain that he still thinks the Iraq War was right—the arguments for going in were better than the arguments against, even though “against” turns out to be right (he does his best to make it sound like the fact the arguments were wrong were irrelevant). And the current problems aren’t because we invaded a country we didn’t have to invade, they’re because Obama actually pulled out when the Iraqis wanted us to! The fool! Doesn’t he know that our invasion was justified purely by our right to take smaller, weaker countries and destroy them to show our power (Goldberg did not say that in this column, but he has said in the past. So remember, that’s all the argument he needed).
•A company that tried to fine a couple for criticizing them in a review has to pay up $300,000.
•Washington state tries to distinguish edible marijuana products from candy.
•Should hospitals use information from data brokers to track our health?

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The Total Woman

Defeating the Dragons does a regular feature where blogger Samantha Field looks at various Christian how-to-submit and how-to-be-a-real-women books written for Christian women. Frequently when I read them I think of the first book of this type I ever encountered, Marabel Morgan’s The Total Woman.
This book came out around 1973, in the early years of second-wave feminism (as it’s now called). It hit like a bomb: Best-seller (IIRC) with features in magazines and newspapers because what Morgan was saying flew in the face of everything feminists were saying (this no longer surprises me. As Susan Faludi has said, the mainstream media love them some antifeminism).
In the intro to the book, Morgan explains how her marriage was a disaster, primarily because she was too damn uppity. Her husband came and dumped stuff on the table she’d just polished? She got upset. He made plans that conflicted with plans she’d already made? He got outraged at her defiance. At one point he apparently told her he’d notify her 30 minutes ahead of time when they were going out, no sooner. Which would, of course, make it impossible for her to plan anything without talking to him first.
Morgan’s conclusion? Not that her husband is a jerk, but that she’d ruined her marriage. Her solution? Obey him in everything. Literally. No matter what he asks, she would do whatever he said. Along with that, she’d give him lots of sex, and dress up in sexy costumes to greet him at the door after work.
Within a short while, or so Morgan says, he was eating out of her hand. Which was, quite clearly, the point: She was submitting, but it was like topping from below. Over and over, the book emphasized that if readers follow Morgan’s directions, it’s not really a sacrifice because their husbands will be so in love they’ll be willing to do what the wife wants.
A lot of the book was much more conventional, like making a to-do list with your top things to do, then crossing off each item as it’s done (I’m aware that sound simple but if you’re not by nature organized, it’s remarkably effective. I speak from experience). Some of the book was religious (believe God has a wonderful plan for your life) which didn’t seem significant then. I realize in hindsight Morgan was a forerunner of the writers Samantha blogs about, and much more religious than I assumed at the time (this may reflect growing up in a small, fairly rural town where God having a plan for your life wasn’t an unusual idea).
Even as a teenager, Morgan’s idea of a perfect relationship didn’t appeal to me at all. Less now, as I’m aware that no matter how well a woman treats her husband, that’s no guarantee he’s going to change his behavior accordingly. And that if your husband is abusive, it’s nothing to do with whether you worship and obey him or not.
I’m also aware, though not surprised, that Morgan didn’t follow her own advice or at least not after a while. In a follow-up when she had another book out, she admitted she hadn’t had the time in her busy career to dress up in costumes to greet her man. Which is pretty typical of anti-feminists (Susan Faludi writes about this too in her book Backlash).
Morgan, as far as I know, has faded from the public eye. But her philosophy, it seems, lives on.

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