Archive for October, 2012|Monthly archive page

Are You Subconciously Suffering From Stepford Women’s Syndrome (SWS)?

In Women & Politics on October 6, 2012 at 8:47 pm
Alexis de Tocqueville, French political thinke...

Alexis de Tocqueville, French political thinker and historian. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My goal in writing this article is to communicate, educate, and inspire inner reflection, diversity of thought and freedom to choose your own destiny as a women and not let men determine your self-worth by making choices for you. Unless I am mistaken, we are no longer considered chattel property or three fifths of a person if you are of African American descent. According to the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution which was adopted on July 9, 1868, its citizenship clause included women and blacks. So, if we have been granted full citizenship and the right to vote through the Nineteenth Amendment which was adopted August 26th 1920, then why are some of us idly sitting by as if we were Stepford Women and letting the white male conservative movements sweeping the country decide what our economic and health equality to include reproductive choices are? Could it be that our conservative male counterparts went back in history and re-read “Democracy in America” written in 1835 by the French political thinker and historian Alexis De Tocqueville?

In his works, De Tocqueville explored the effects of the rising equality of social conditions on both the individual and the states in western societies. Per De Tocqueville, America took great care in differentiating distinct spheres between men and women and equality with full citizenship being limited to white males. In the words of De Tocqueville: “In no country has such care been taken as in America to trace two clearly distinct lines of action for the two sexes, and to make them keep pace with one with the other, but in two pathways which are always different. American women never manage the outward concerns of the family or conduct a business or take a part in political life; nor on the other hand, are they compelled to perform the rough labor of the fields or to make any laborious exertions which require physical strength.” In addition he states “…American women cannot escape from the quiet circle of domestic employment; on the other hand she is never forced to go beyond it.” He then writes, “They hold that every association must have a head in order to accomplish its object, and that the natural head of conjugal association is man.” De Tocqueville concludes with these beliefs “…I am drawing to the close of this work, in which I have spoken of so many important things done by the Americans, to what the singular prosperity and growing strength of that people ought mainly to be attributed, I should reply-to superiority of their women.”

To the French political thinker American women were superior and, the nation was prosperous because its women were kept uneducated, barefoot, and pregnant, away from politics and business under the charge of the superior male. Unlike, the aristocracy in France where there was no such distinction made between the two sexes. In America, a clear distinction is made, and that consensus amongst its men is that a woman’s responsibility is to instill morals and values in children with a special emphasis on male offspring. Yes, her job is to educate and groom the boys to become future leaders of the country. This new generation of male leaders socialized in this ideologue would also continue the practice of limiting a woman’s right to choose her destiny.

I found De Tocqueville’s writings to be intriguing and very much still resembling the ideology and philosophy of the white male conservative base of present day, especially those in the “Good Ole South” and Midwestern states. This group also has a segment of our female colleagues as devoted followers. I refer to these women as suffering subconsciously from Stepford Womens’ Syndrome thinking that this backward dogmatic behavior is acceptable as our rights are slowly dismantled under the auspices of the slogans “We are Taking Our Country Back” and “Religion”.

These women are like sheep being led away by a very sly cunning and charismatic fox. The fox has told them precisely what he intends to do, and that is taking away their right to choose what is best for their lives as it relates to when to start a family and equal pay for equal work. Yet, they look the other way giving no heed to their gut subjective intuition. It isn’t until after the courtship is over that the Stepford woman realizes that she has been manipulated, seduced and demoted back to the status of chattel property by the sly fox’s empirically deceiving numbers on the economy and that he has not given any credibility to her contributions to the country’s bottom line and to do so would mean that equal pay for equal work is valid. Our female colleagues will have a reality check after the romance is over, and she is no longer under the influence of the Stepford Womens’ Syndrome (SMS) and is now likened to the proverbial deer caught in the head lights; she only makes seventy seven cents to every dollar her male counterpart earns she no longer controls her reproductive rights and can no longer afford to go to college. After all who does the American woman think she is thinking for herself?

In the minds of these male conservatives, in order to return the country back to prosperity and a sense of normality and status quo privilege, it is imperative that they start by slowly taking women rights away and placing them back under the dominion of the male species. So, as I’m writing this article as a woman and of African American descent the epiphany occurs to me that this isn’t a war on Womens’ rights collectively as much as it is a war by the white male conservative bloc on the forward progression of white women. She has gotten too uppity and now their birth numbers are down. To him, he has lost control of his woman with the exception of the few sheep that were led away by the fox. He and his team will have to do something right away to stop the forward progress of their women especially, since they examined the statistical data that reiterated the fact that various shades of brown babies are being born for the first time in American history at faster rates than white babies. Ah, it is the browning of America, and the changing demographics that have prompted this aggressive behavior against the rights of women. It is the sobering reality that he will soon be the new minority and that absolutely frightens him.

For those female colleagues who have chosen to suffer through the Stepford Womens’ Syndrome and go along with the fanaticism of this white male privileged ideology, Dr. Khail Muhammad, scholar, historian and director of the New York Public Library Schomburg Center for research in black culture so noted in an article written by Marian Wright Edelman, President of the Children’s Defense Fund the “Great Racial Divide” warned that when we gloss over the truth about our history we do so at our peril. I dare say that this is the beginning of his framework to reimplement Jim Crow Laws and repeal the 1964 Civil Rights Act which is evident in the new voter suppression laws passed as legislation in various states in an attempt to disenfranchise and undermine the doctrine of democracy for women and minorities. As a woman and minority, I appreciate the right to choose my own destiny and to be of independent means and refuse to look the other way by succumbing to the Stepford Womens’ Syndrome. We as women need to continue being audacious in moving forward and having our say, lest the Womens’ Suffrage and Civil Rights Movements be in vain for those who fought to open the doors of opportunity to all Americans