On the one side, we have someone with enough resources to attend Georgetown University School of Law, but who is outraged! that other people don’t want to foot the bill so she can roll in the sheets with whomever she pleases, under whatever circumstances she pleases, without concern over potential reproductive consequences. We are told that our opposition to funding her recreation is a “war on women” (or is it wymyn?).
And on the other hand we have Boko Haram, which kidnaps their female victims by the truckload. “I abducted your girls. I will sell them in the market, by Allah. There is a market for selling humans. Allah says I should sell. He commands me to sell. I will sell women. I sell women.” The Nigerian government has been accused of inaction. It vigorously disputes that (it has, after all, acted: it arrested a leader of the protest marches). But lest you think that all Boko Haram is about is selling women into slavery, they want you to know different. Look up the village of Gamboru. As of yesterday morning they’re about 200 [Update (08 May 14): The NYT reports “at least” 336 dead.] residents short; Boko Haram attacked the village and slaughtered the inhabitants. Oh dear. What will the Religion of Peace think of next?
In an earlier post I linked to a report (also in the FAZ) on the practice of forced marriages in Muslim sub-Saharan Africa, specifically in Niger. Even in good times, as the article reports, fully a third of girls are forcibly married off before they’re 15. Some are married and delivered to their new husbands before they’ve even begun to menstruate.
And in another post I linked to reports about what happens in a true “rape culture” when a victim (of a gang rape, no less) has the temerity not to know her place and shut up.
I’m not here to argue that Western civilization is perfect. Or even that it doesn’t need some smithing here and there. I cannot deny that many men fail, in their ordinary daily lives, to treat women with the respect they deserve as moral free agents and repositories of the divine spark (“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.” Gen. 1:27; note that both male and female are created in the image of God, by the way). I cannot and do not deny that many men in their ordinary daily lives fail to respect the mental attainment and acuity of the women they encounter. Likewise I cannot and do not deny that many men fail to bring, in their personal lives, a proper sense of awe to their women as the cradle of human life. And by like token, I sure as hell don’t deny that not a few women out there shamelessly abuse those men who do make the effort to engage women in general and the women they encounter in particular as presumptive moral and mental equals (at least until demonstrated otherwise).
But to pretend that half the human population in Western civilization consists of victims of a “war on women,” when at no time in recorded human history, in no place in the world, have women in general and in particular — even women at the very bottom of whatever scale you choose to measure by — been physically safer, healthier, longer-lived, more independent in their persons and their affairs, and with greater access to coercive power over their fellow humans, is to spit in the faces of those 12-year-old brides, to kick dirt over those 200+ schoolgirls who are to be sold according to the dictates of Allah.
If there were justice in this world, a deputation of mothers of those schoolgirls would drop by Sandra Fluke’s apartment and beat her with pieces of fire wood until she could no longer walk.
[Update (14 May 14): As if on cue, here we have Mlle Fluke herself on the Boko Haram kidnapping situation. There are links to the audio, and a partial transcript. Let’s just say Comrade Fluke does not come across terribly well.]