The signs of the decay of feminism can be seen far beyond Pennsylvania Avenue. In cities across the U.S., women are chucking the corporate world and embracing Barney’s world instead. They have found fulfillment where their grandmothers did—in the home, raising their children, offering love and support to their husbands. Many do not consider domestic work a drudgery—rather, they see it as a comforting alternative to the 24/7 career life.
But what has brought about this seismic shift in American life? Feminism may, in fact, be responsible. Young women have seen the fallout from feminism and, as a result, they want no part of it. Public opinion polls generally show that younger women flinch at the thought of being called “feminists.”
They may have been raised in the broken homes spawned by the nation’s divorce culture, and they don’t want their own children to suffer the fate that they did. In essence, they suffered parental loss early in their lives because their mothers were rarely home long enough to be a nurturing force. Instead of tugging on their mothers’ apron strings, they were left to tug on the telephone cord that connected them to their working mothers’ offices. They felt a distance from their mothers that no amount of therapy could adequately address.
In one noteworthy case, a poll commissioned by Faye Wattleton, former head of the pro-abortion Planned Parenthood, showed the generation gap which feminism caused. Wattleton asked women whether keeping abortion legal was a major concern, and they said “no.”
Years of Planned Parenthood’s preaching about the alleged necessity of abortion-on-demand have failed to convince the younger generation, who realize that sisters, brothers, cousins, friends, and potential mates are missing because they were aborted by their misguided mothers. Younger women tend not to see abortion as a right—but rather as a profound wrong.
Recent national public opinion polls also show quite clearly that Americans support legal abortion in only rare circumstances—in fact, most people believe it should be banned in 99 percent of all cases. Feminist icon Molly Yard, who was marching for abortion well into her golden years, must be turning over in her grave.
Young women simply don’t relate to Eleanor Smeal, Gloria Steinem, and the other “founding mothers” of the modern feminist movement. They see such women as out-of-touch, angry, and unfulfilled. They admire women who can keep a household together under trying circumstances. They may have iPods and Blackberries, but they still believe in the value of hearth and home.
And they definitely believe that men are necessary.