Celebrate Father’s Day, Schlafley style

By declaring, apparently, that domestic violence doesn’t matter.

During the Clinton Administration, the feminists parlayed their hysteria that domestic violence is a national epidemic into the passage of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). This created a gigantic gravy train of taxpayers’ money, known as feminist pork, that empowers pro-divorce, anti-male activism.

Don’t you just hate it when those man-hating feminists have the audacity to claim that women shouldn’t have to stay with men who beat them up? Here’s the kicker: “Local crimes and marital disputes should not be subjects of federal law or spending.”

Ah. So… physically attacking someone you’re wedded to is simply a “marital dispute”? I wonder, then, if it would be ok for me to beat the shit out of my boss — after all, wouldn’t that just be a little “labor dispute,” and no business of the authorities? Further, if the private domestic sphere should be no place for federal spending, then perhaps next Schlafley will write a column criticizing the Bush Administration’s spending on marriage programs.

Schlafley’s ultimate point is that a good way to celebrate Father’s Day would be to withdraw federal funding of the Violence Against Women Act. Because, apparently, it would be really good for dads and for families if dad could beat up mom without that over-reaching federal government stepping in.

And in a column with a nearly identical lead, Mark Alexander also goes after the man-haters. But he takes it a step further:

History also records the exploits of those who grew up without fathers, or with weak or abusive fathers. They became Adolf Hitler, Iosif Vissarionouich Djugashvili (Joseph Stalin), Mao Zedong and Saddam Hussein.

So, bad news for kids who grow up without dads: you’ll probably grow up to be a genocidal maniac.

And I’d just like to clear something up. Alexander writes:

The Grande Dame of the so-called “women’s movement,” Gloria Steinem, once declared, “A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.”

Though popularly attributed to Gloria Steinem, it ain’t her quote.


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About Jill

Jill began blogging for Feministe in 2005. She has since written as a weekly columnist for the Guardian newspaper and in April 2014 she was appointed as senior political writer for Cosmopolitan magazine.
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7 Responses to Celebrate Father’s Day, Schlafley style

  1. Here’s the kicker: “Local crimes and marital disputes should not be subjects of federal law or spending.”

    Ah. So… physically attacking someone you’re wedded to is simply a “marital dispute”? I wonder, then, if it would be ok for me to beat the shit out of my boss — after all, wouldn’t that just be a little “labor dispute,” and no business of the authorities?

    I think physically attacking someone you’re wedded to falls under the category of “local crimes,” not marital disputes. Likewise, if you were to beat the shit out of your boss, it would just be assault. The federal government wouldn’t be involved at all.

  2. Cinnamon says:

    The funny thing is that the VAWA was used to help bring charges against the guy who taking shots at random folks in DC a while ago. Because of VAWA, carrying a gun across state lines to commit a crime, has higher penalties than if you use a gun in your home state.

  3. Marian Shah says:

    Lauren–Just out of curiosity, whose quote was the “fish and bicycles” quote? Not being snarky, I really want to know, because pop culture has always attributed it to Steinem.

  4. Marian Shah says:

    Oops, I’m an idiot. I clicked the link and answered my own question. :)

  5. ol cranky says:

    I wonder if the men who love and care for the women who’ve been beaten to a pulp or killed by their fathers, brothers, husbands are considered “man haters” for wanting better domestic violence laws.

  6. Adrienne says:

    The first commenter is exactly right. Jill, Schlafly wasn’t trying to say that wife-beating isn’t a crime, just that it’s not a crime that should be under the purview of the federal government. And she’s absolutely right. Murder, rape, assault, theft—these are things that happen within individual states with their own statutes dictating the punishments for said crimes. The Violence Against Women Act is a purely symbolic piece of legislation that does nothing to reduce domestic violence, and yet, it’s one of those Catch-22’s that politicians hate: if you vote against it because you believe the individual states should make their own laws regarding domestic violence, opponents will say that you “support domestic violence,” or something to that effect. And that’s ridiculous.

  7. Cinnamon says:

    However, in cases where women escape their abuser by fleeing their home state, states had a hard time providing protection to these women who fled into their state. VAWA increased penalties for following that woman with the attempt to cause her harm as well as making it easier for the new host stateto prosecute him as well as protect her.

    Not to mention it helps to provide another layer of protection for women who are either married to a military member, or are in the military themselves. For full text, go here http://www.now.org/issues/violence/vawa/vawa1998.html

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