The Legacy of Feminism: Paying Helots to Have Kids

| December 17 2013
John Harris

I have at long last gotten around to reading Patrick Buchanan’s Suicide of a Superpower.  I knew fairly well what to expect.  Pat is my favorite contrarian.  His earlier opus, Churchill, Hitler, and the Unnecessary War, left me utterly convinced that our enabling of Stalin and Mao (and by “us”, I mean FDR and Churchill) during the defeat of fascism and Japanese imperialism created a vastly greater global calamity than anything Hitler and Hirohito might have devised.  That such enabling was neither unforeseen nor, perhaps, unintended (at least on the part of certain diehard ideologues in FDR’s entourage) has been further documented by Herbert Hoover’s memoir, Freedom Betrayed.  Mysteriously, this presidential (and magisterial) manuscript lay about for fifty years before seeing the light of publication—an “oversight” that can only leave one the more willing to believe in the reality of epochal cover-ups and whitewashes.  Writers like Pat have a ready audience in those of us who have wakened up, in middle age, to the gloomy fact that we’ve been lied to all our lives.

All the same, there’s something almost postmodern about this American original’s analysis at times.  By that I mean that Buchanan’s formulations occasionally imply a triumph of the irrational, as in the nonsensical design of a sealed labyrinth.  We, his loyal readers, may sense that a failure of the right-hand turn to lead out is forever being paired with a suggestion that the left-hand turn would not have led out, either.  Huis clos.  America, we are told, embarked upon moral meltdown when it began collectively to abandon the Christian faith; yet the fatal contagion was already dormant in the Protestant heresy, it seems—and America, of course, was profoundly Protestant from the outset.  Yet early and strong doses of Catholicism could not have cleansed the infection, for the Catholic Church would find its own way to degeneracy through the self-sabotage of Vatican II.  Yet even without Vatican II, American Catholicism could not have served as an antidote to creeping social and moral malaise, because too many Catholics would eventually hail from Third World nations that have no tradition of responsible self-governance.  These and other blue-collar, unskilled, under-educated immigrants were fated to swamp our population of Northwestern European ethnics, because the former have always bred prolifically while the latter have bred ever more rarely as their material successes have lured them from parental labors.

It’s not difficult to understand why such arguments might acquire a vague odor of racism to nostrils not practiced in sniffing out fine distinctions.  I myself am a little troubled sometimes by Pat’s “demography is destiny” brand of determinism.  Buchanan’s own Irish Catholic ancestors were once portrayed in the popular press as a quarrelsome, simian species forever beyond the reach of education but never beyond reaching for a bottle.  I cannot discern, furthermore, what happens to a Kelly or a Schwartz who marries an Ayala or a Vargas in this demography of doomsday.  Is the result to be logged as just another indicator of degeneracy?  There are many instances of such “miscegenation” where I live, and I can’t tell that their offspring are less apt at schoolwork or business than a “real McCoy”.  Quite the contrary: these are often the strongest families, since they combine the Old World values of Catholicism with the New World teetotaling and work ethic of the Puritan.

As a grad student who spent most of his twenties in Humanities research programs, I can personally testify to the virtual impossibility of finding marriageable material among that demographic.  The white European-descended female (of either Catholic or Protestant provenance) embarked upon a doctoral course of study does NOT have lifelong commitment to a single mate and a twenty-year investment in child-rearing on her horizon.  She is indeed likely to be insulted or feel harassed (with recourse to campus legal services possibly in her mind) if any male should hint at so vile a proposal.  The offending brute might as well be sticking a match to her Ph.D. diploma and trying to abduct her to his basement, like Ariel Castro.  An offer to spend the weekend together at the beach would be another matter entirely; but to invite this new Eve to share in parenthood is to debase her to a mere uterus.  How repugnantly carnal!

I was disappointed that Buchanan’s long and worthy book wasted scarcely a line on the topic of feminist subversion—for my intent here has not been to write a tardy book review, but to sidle up precisely to this point (for which the book has provided me the occasion).  Pat blames abortion for the near-universal failure among Western societies to regenerate their numbers: and, of course, he’s right as far as that goes.  But the popularity of abortion among well-educated Caucasians, the same group’s impressive mastery of contraception, and the white European’s downright aversion to bearing and rearing children are all beholden to the pervasive influence of feminism upon manners and customs of the bourgeoisie.  To such “triumphs” must be added the elevation of sexual pleasure to a kind of art form, or even to a reason for being.  Marriage itself has become but a stabilization of sexual experiences in the arms of an especially gratifying partner—a primary cause, by the way, of the eagerness among younger voters (especially college students or graduates) to extend marital sanctions to gay couples.  Why not?  What else is marriage about?  Certainly not children!

I’m no apologist for the traditional Muslim habit of transforming women into baby-factories—the means by which, as Pat cannily observes, Islam is destined to inherit control of Jerusalem with or without Iran’s contributing a nuke.  It angers me as a man and saddens me as a human being, however, to have lived through and observed at close quarters the feminist defamation of motherhood—this while, at the same time, being force-fed no end of psycho-babble about the superior tenderness and nurturing of the female genius.  As much as anything, feminism has undone the West.  It has transformed women into brazen egotists, men into spoiled-brat punks, the family into a train wreck, and children (for many feminist camp-followers want their one child somewhere along the way, just to taste parenthood on the fingertip) into bitter gypsies wandering life’s backroads and gutters.  In my opinion, it has left aging women turning to the State as a surrogate for the Missing Husband and younger women expecting the State to play the Missing Dad’s role.  It has left educated, childless adult males looking to the statist utopia as their shared, progressive bequest to the future—a legacy devoid of unique or individual tincture, of spiritual DNA; a suppression of virtuous pride in favor of collectivist hubris; a gay couple’s last testament made out to trees and polar bears, all saccharine abstraction and collaboration in insipid fantasy.

Regardless of what may have brought us to this pass—Protestantism’s thirst for material acquisition, Catholicism’s embrace of more secular values, a communist infiltration of the professoriate, the Third World’s supplying of raw manpower as affluent societies doodle—ours is an ignoble end, a eunuch’s pale-and-scented suicide.  Essentially, the educated and naturally intellectual now slave away so that the analphabetic and naturally dull may have children.  We work and pay: they stay home and crank up the TV.  I agree with Patrick Buchanan that such an arrangement seems very wrong from several angles; but it was created, after all, by the “intellects”, not the masses.  Hence the suicide.

My advice to young white males everywhere with a stubborn sense of common decency, of honest pride in personal endeavor, and of commitment to ends that resist the Hive is to start a family.  Best plan: look for a gentle, prudent, cute Chicana and flee the careerist dynamo who traded in her campus cut-offs for a pants suit.  Dedicate yourself to your children, not to your wife’s egotistical pipedreams.