Why Mothers Matter

The Darkstream tonight was inspired by some thoughts on Mother’s Day and the signal importance that mothers play in defending and sustaining Western civilization.

The 2007 column I mentioned, The Mother’s War, can be read here.

And since the verdict was distinctly pro-excerpt, I’m including one on a tangentially related topic from Innocence & Intellect, 2001-2005 (The Collected Columns). I figure I’ll try to do 2-3 per week. This 2003 column proved to be an extremely controversial one and got me invited on several radio shows after its publication, including a Canadian one where all the callers lined up to take angry shots at me. Good times.


Spiting their pretty faces
February 3, 2003

A recent story floating around the variety section of a newspaper I still read occasionally reminded me of a conversation I had with a college girlfriend about six months ago. She’s a pretty woman—slender, petite, well-educated and intelligent. She has an excellent, high-paying job and even owns her own house.

She is, in short, the epitome of feminist success. And yet, she is profoundly disappointed with her life. She has, in her own words, continued to stumble upwards while somehow missing out on the only thing she truly wanted—a husband and a family.

Nor is she alone, in anecdotal or statistical terms. Not only do the majority of women who were in our college social circle remain unmarried, but according to Barbara Dafoe Whitehead, author of “Why There Are No Good Men Left: The Romantic Plight of the New Single Woman”, a 30-something woman is three times more likely to be unmarried than her 1970’s counterpart. While some might argue that this is a good thing, most demographics experts would disagree, as would, it appears, an awful lot of those 30-something single women.

While Whitehead correctly identifies the general problem, she is as clueless as the next feminist as to how to go about solving it. Instead of recommending that individuals change the one thing within their power—namely, their behavior—she advocates altering the entire system of courtship. Given this typically fascistic feminist approach, I am, of course, shocked that her six 30-something daughters and nieces all remain available.

But, as I told my friend, the root of the problem is that the kind of man she wants is precisely the man who is smart enough to stay away from her. Smart, educated women aren’t willing to date down on the social scale, so the higher they rise, the more they cut down on their available pool of men.

Furthermore, the smarter a man is, the more he is likely to realize that being romantically involved with an intelligent, educated, upper-middle-class American woman steeped in 20 years of feminist indoctrination is about as desirable as being flayed alive and rolled in salt.

Consider the premarital professions of the women in my social circle, all of whom are now stay-at-home moms happily married to intelligent, successful men: Farmgirl. Nanny. Teacher. Office manager. Nanny. Pipeline worker. Professional student. Church volunteer. That’s eight quality men who won’t be marrying a high-powered career girl right there.

The advice I gave my friend was succinct: In any given dating situation, think about what your instincts are telling you—then do the opposite. It’s like football… if the run is getting stuffed, then throw the darn ball.

So, in the unlikely event there happens to be a 30-something single woman reading this, here are a few pointers which might be helpful while you wait for Ms. Dafoe Whitehead and company to change the dating culture:

  • Your rights are delineated in the Constitution. Everything else is a privilege.
  • Your family has to put up with you. For everyone else, it’s optional.
  • Southern belles always get what they want. Watch and learn, grasshopper.
  • Sex as an incentive is fair enough. Using its deprivation as a punishment will backfire hideously.
  • Mocking your man in public creates a no-win situation. He can either slice and dice you verbally, which is no fun for you, or keep his mouth shut and look like an idiot. In the case of the latter, it doesn’t mean that you’ve won, or that he’s forgotten.
  • Men love happy women. Act happy and you may discover how to be happy.
  • If there’s any doubt, choose the most optimistic interpretation. That’s what he meant.
  • Honey, honey, honey—a thousand times honey. Never vinegar.
  • Conflict is not passion. It isn’t any fun, either.
  • Limit yourself to five complaints and demands a day. If you’re not counting, you’re over the limit.
  • If no one ever taught you the traditional arts, find an older woman to be your mentor.
  • Your feelings and objectively verifiable facts may be different. Learn to distinguish between them.

Now, I’m not saying that applying these principles to your dating scene will turn frogs into princes or anything, but they will get you in the game. And if all else fails, just tell your next first date that you’re thinking of quitting your job and returning to your former career as an aerobics instructor.

He’ll be intrigued, trust me.