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In 1971 Erin Pizzey founded Chiswick Women's Aid, the first refuge for battered wives. Her 1974 book "Scream Quietly or the Neighbors Will Hear" brought the issue to the attention of the public.

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This Way To The Revolution - Part 5

Written by Erin Pizzey Wednesday, May 2, 2007 10:22 AM
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We were due to fly to North Carolina to speak to the University of North Carolina, and by now I was desperate for a friendly face. It wasn’t that anyone was overtly hostile but I realized that we were living in two parallel worlds. My hostesses had their own agenda and I was just an agent in the plan to carve out a whole new marketplace for women.

Sometime during the week, I was ushered into a meeting at the United Nations. By this time I was moving on automatic pilot. I had little time to admire the fantastic building before I found myself standing in front of a large group of women who sat magisterially behind engraved brass plates giving the names of the countries they represented. My impassioned speech left the delegates stony faced. Many of the women sitting in front of me had fought against unimaginable odds to achieve a career at the United Nations. I still could not be bullied into agreeing that in many of the poorest countries, women alone were the down trodden and oppressed. Certainly women suffered, giving birth under dreadful unhygienic circumstances. Boys were far more likely to receive an education than girls but amongst the teeming millions in those countries, both men and women suffered. If these women were hell bent on carving out a career under the banner of radical feminism then anything I might have to say to them was a waste of time.

As I left the building I began to think of the feminist movement as a Trojan horse. As a child I was fascinated by the story of a huge wooden horse built by the Greeks when they were trying to enter and sack the city of Troy. The Trojans upon seeing the Greeks leaving their shores assumed that they were victorious and pulled the beautifully decorated horse through the gates of the city. That night the Greeks armed to the teeth hidden in the belly of the horse achieved their aim and destroyed the city of Troy. On the surface the animal appears benign but within its belly it carries seeds of destruction. For most women I knew, including myself, we had been beguiled by the promise of ‘equal pay,’ that seems fair enough. Abortion which was illegal and punishable by a prison sentence would now be legalized and a woman could make her own choice and not have to resort to back street abortionists. Free child care would enable women to go out to work; those were the promises.

Most of the women who were propagating the new dawn for women came from a left wing political background. Many of us endured long turgid meetings in our ‘collectives’ in the early days of the women’s movement. Earnest women debated the merits of Trotsky’s vision of a new world against eye watering boring arguments from the Maoist sisterhood. International Marxist women often fought physically against anyone who rejected their version of the truth. These women may have moved the goal posts and declared that capitalism was no longer the enemy, but their methods of enforcing their new religion upon all women was just as thuggish and brutal as the old religion they tried to overthrow.

I knew that women in China were being forcibly aborted. Millions of Chinese had starved to death in famines. There was no equality for women in Russia – there were no women in the Russian Politburo and millions of men and women who dared to dissent in either country were murdered or forced into labor camps. Children in both countries were in full time nurseries and both parents were forced to work. However my warnings fell on deaf ears. Maybe these very senior women decided that whatever was happening across the world, a new movement for women that could outlaw men and create employment for only women was a way forward. In order to achieve this ambition the suffering of women in China and Russia could be airbrushed out because in the end, that dreadful argument that it takes many broken eggs to make an omelet, justifies cruel regimes.

I stayed as a guest in the house of a Baptist minister in North Carolina. For me it was a crash course in bible thumping born again Christianity. As a lover of God in all his aspects and a passionate believer in the divinity of all human beings, I was very offended by the exclusive nature of the religion touted by my host. I much preferred the teaching in the Qu’ran where men and women are created independently. The Christian version where women are created from Adam’s rib always seemed suspect. In fact the Qu’ran gives Muslim women many more rights than the Christian bible. I imagined that part of the fury of the women’s movement in America could well be in rebellion against the very American tradition of the man being the head of the family and the mom in the kitchen baking apple pie.

When I talked to some of the women professors at Duke University I could also sense their frustration – so many women professors across America were unable to get tenure. Even then when I talked to rooms packed out with women students I was aware that men were not invited or included. The battle lines were drawn, but to create a whole new bogus field of research based on men as the enemy seemed ludicrous. Several research students explained that they had to write up big research projects in order for the University to attract funds. The explosion of interest particularly in the media across America gave women everywhere the impetus to jump on board this juggernaught. Since the feminist movement in America was largely founded by academics – they were the first researchers to try and justify the war against men.

From North Carolina I went back to New York and to my friend’s loft, which was an oasis of calm after the weary battles I left behind me. The few men I managed to talk to were blearily unaware and disinterested in the disastrous events taking place. Their attitude was “as long as it doesn’t happen in my yard I’m not involved.” Even now, thirty six years later with family life disbanded, so many millions of men separated from their children and a lost generation of confused women, men are still unable to come together to try and remedy the damage.

During the week I met Professors Murray Straus and Suzanne Steinmetz. At that time they were just beginning to work on their own research projects. To their eternal credit, they both recognized the fatally flawed feminist attempts to destroy men and they publicly make their findings known. The third member of their team, Richard Gelles, invited me to speak at the University of Rhode Island, where I was heckled by a savage bunch of women. But ultimately Gelles went on to also cast doubt on the feminist findings. All three of them faced the same kind of persecution I did. Suzanne Steinmetz was issued with death threats against her children and herself for writing her journal article ‘The Battered Husband Syndrome’ and Murray Straus had to battle against a very serious attempt to destroy his tenure.

The all powerful National Organization of Women swung into action and made violence against women their paramount concern. Women in all powerful official positions across America loudly affirmed that to be born a male child predisposed the baby to a future as a batterer, a rapist, a danger to the family, and a sexual abuser. Sitting in the loft it all seemed so far away and so extreme that I comforted myself that I was meeting only a tiny cross section of malignant women.

Unfortunately, I had to admit that by the end of my travels, which took me to Boston, Vermont and Detroit, I could no longer close my eyes. Many of the women professors in the Universities that invited me to speak were already designing courses or teaching courses that were designed to demonize men. Men had no right of reply as they were not allowed to enroll in any of these courses. I found it hard to believe that the Universities would allow this blatant discrimination – but they did. The days of female professors struggling for tenure were now going to be over. A vast new academic edifice was being born - ‘Women’s Studies.’

Copyright © 2007 Erin Pizzey, All Rights Reserved

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One Response to “This Way To The Revolution - Part 5”

  1. Ryan Carney Says:

    Dear Erin
    Im having to track you down yet again! I lost your email address.
    Im living in South Africa, and trying to find another farm, probably in Zambia or Mozambique.

    Please write if you get this. Glad to see your still carrying on the fight! hope your well.

    Love Ryan

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Copyright © 2007 Erin Pizzey, All Rights Reserved