Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Quickies: Self-Nominations And Gresham’s Law

     Today, Ashe Schow comments on the not-so-unique blindness of a former feminist icon:

     Gloria Steinem said that few people want to identify as "feminists" because of Rush Limbaugh. Seriously.

     Late last week, the feminist activist was promoting her new book on "CBS This Morning" when she was asked why she believed people don't want to identify as feminists. Host Norah O'Donnell noted that actress Meryl Streep won't use the label and prefers the term "humanist."

     Steinem interrupted O'Donnell to claim that Limbaugh has diminished the term by talking "about 'feminazis' every day."

     You have to expect some defensiveness from former Playboy bunny Steinem, but what’s truly remarkable is her unwillingness to focus on the real reason “feminism” as a self-nomination is in decline. Miss Schow is here to tell us:

     "Too many folks see 'feminist' as implying not just equality, but other ideas — that the sexes are the same, or should be; that women who stay home to raise the kids are making a bad choice," the [N.Y. Post] editorial board wrote. "Feminism got tied to one side in the abortion wars and countless other issues. It's hard now to see it as more than another arm of the 'progressive' agenda."

     The editorial board added that those who brandish the "feminist" label appear to respect the choices of some women — especially women who espouse liberal beliefs — more than others.

     I can say personally that is the reason I wouldn't use the term as it applies today, especially since I've never listened to Rush Limbaugh.

     But of course. I’ve written about this before:

     There's a form of Gresham's Law that functions here: A group that equally values its most civilized members and its most vitriolic members will soon possess a preponderance of the latter. The good, self-respecting members will disdain to remain among persons who hurl insults and epithets at them, leaving the group populated by only the insult-hurlers, plus a smattering of generally decent persons with inadequate self-respect.

     Sir Thomas Gresham was more right, and about more subjects, than even he knew.

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