Since the Women’s March on January 21, 2017, there has been a lot of discussion regarding what defines the modern woman. Many women at the march defined themselves as feminists, who believed that they spoke for all the women in the world.
This could be seen written on some signs at the march, one of which stated, “The Future Is Woman.” This raised questions. Is the future really a feminist future? Is feminism really that popular?
I was present at the march as part of a delegation of TFP Student Action, a special project of the American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP). We interviewed many march participants to see what their main concerns were. This gave us much insight into the feminist movement. We could see that feminism is not only rejected by many women, it has been in decline for some time.
If they did represent all women, the participants of the Women’s March were not very diverse. Perhaps nine in ten were women; about one in twenty-five were black; and the majority were in their twenties or slightly older. There were few teenagers and children. Clearly, this was not a “family” event. It was a march of women. Not just any women, it was a march of a very non-diverse demographic of feminists.
The Radical Faces of Feminism
In the interviews, one woman after another declared themselves feminists and showed radical sides of the ideology that could be very disconcerting.
One of the most shocking aspects of feminism is the rejection of the virtues of femininity. This very unpleasant side was expressed perfectly by the words on a sign carried by many, “I am a nasty woman.” Perhaps the poem actress Ashley Judd read at the rally described it best with the line: “I am a nasty woman—a loud, vulgar, proud woman.”
Another disturbing side to feminism is its pro-abortion position. Their euphemism for this is women’s health issues and reproductive rights. The great majority of the placards focused on this issue. This is not surprising since Planned Parenthood was one of the march’s main sponsors and promoters. It became obvious that being pro-life is not compatible with the feminist movement when the pro-abortion marchers clashed with pro-life demonstrators. We asked several marchers if the pro-life movement belonged in the Women’s March and they emphatically said no.
Yet, another distasteful side to feminism is their pride in being a “strong and independent” woman. This seems to be a euphemism for independence from men. They neither need nor want the help of men to be successful in life. One incident was particularly telling. We saw a group of women with a tall man in the lead who could easily see above the crowd. When the man suggested the group should head in a certain direction, a woman next to him responded curtly, “Don’t tell us where to go. This is our event. We know how to march. Stop mansplaining.” Apparently, “mansplaining” is when a man explains—hence “mansplain”—things to a woman in a condescending way. It is meant to challenge the hierarchical behavior of men. These women felt offended that a tall man, with an unobstructed view ahead of the crowd dared to give them directions of where they ought to go.
How Popular Is the Feminist Movement?
After the march, I tracked news sites and social media. I was relieved to know that not all women feel represented by the Women’s March. I watched video after video online, of women publicly declaring themselves as not feminists and they are proud to be wives, mothers and pro-lifers.
Recently, Kellyanne Conway, who ran President Trump’s presidential campaign, declared on television that she does not consider herself a feminist because “feminists are pro-abortion and anti-male.”
The growing unpopularity of feminism can be seen in many polls.
The Feminist Majority Foundation cites a 1986 Newsweek/Gallup poll revealing that 56% of women define themselves as feminists.1 According to a more recent 2016 YouGov poll, only 32% of women consider themselves feminists.2 Even more surprising, a 2016 article of The Telegraph stated that only 7% of women in Britain consider themselves feminists.3
Both recent polls point to the reason why feminism has declined in popularity. It is simply too extreme. It clearly does not reflect the reality of the lives of most women today.