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The Forum > Article Comments > We havenít come a long way baby at all > Comments

We havenít come a long way baby at all : Comments

By Melinda Tankard Reist, published 16/3/2007

We have to acknowledge the tragic truth: the movement for womenís equality, in many ways, appears to have failed.

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I'm not sure I would go so far as to conclude that the women's movement has failed. It just hasn't completely succeeded yet.

And it certainly does seem to have become seriously sidetracked with this sexual litertarianism. I agree with the author about how disturbing the increasing sexualisation of girls at ever-younger ages is becoming.

I wonder how it came to this, and what the solutions could be.

Cheers!
Posted by Rhys Probert, Friday, 16 March 2007 9:30:44 AM
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I use to hear women talking about how their fathers would not let them wear makeup or have their ears pierced until for example they were at least a teenager.

Having a daughter of my own, I now understand WHY!

Research shows that fathers play an extremely important role. It has been shown that girls in mother only households become sexual active at an earlier age than in families where there is a resident genetic father.

Debate exists whether the girls are mimicing their mothers behaviour or there is a phermone which plays a part. It has been shown that girls without a genetic father in the household also reach puberty at an earlier age.

My daughter just the other day expressed the idea that she would have her first baby at 30, which I thought was an excellent idea and hopefully it is within a loving and caring relationship.

In the last 3 or 4 decades social norms or boundaries on what is regarded as acceptable behaviour has disintergrated. Once it was frowned on to be an unmarried mother, now it is totally acceptable.

In many instances there are siblings in families that only share the genetic heritage of the mother.

It has only been in the last 120 years that the age of consent was set at 16. Prior to that the age of consent was about 12.

I agree with the author that sexualising pre-pubescent children is not a good idea.

However we must be careful about oppression verses repression.

Is sexual liberation as toxic and as damaging as sexual repression.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/news.html?in_article_id=436592&in_page_id=1770
"Date Rape Myth exposed as binge drinking is to blame."

As Maximus pointed out in a previous post. It was reliable birth control which liberated women.

So in reality the sexual liberalization is because of the liberation of women. We do not need another MacKinnon or Dowrkin to poison the world again.
Posted by JamesH, Friday, 16 March 2007 10:04:31 AM
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What a great article! I couldn't have said it better myself. Women have been sucked into this rhetoric about power and equality when they are really just being exploited in a different way.

While we now can own our own property, work for as long as we wish and have children when we want, the advent of sexual liberalism has tied us down and taken our value away in a different way.

Yes JamesH, a significant problem is the lack of a father influence not just for girls but for boys. Are women solely to blame for this lack? I can't get past the impression that a lot of the trouble with women these days and young women in particular is men that do not want to share the power dynamic, men that are bitter because some of their influence has been taken away. They are taking it back in an insidious way.

Men wield the most economic power in the media, in the pornography industry, entertainment industry etc. They have the most to gain from the exploitation of women. What is disheartening though is how easily women are duped into thinking that the freedom that they have to sexually "express" themselves, is a positive. It is in reality nothing more than giving more power to men and in the end, is enslaving them more.
Posted by Lizzie4, Friday, 16 March 2007 10:41:33 AM
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I am astounded that I finally find something to agree on with the author and the above comments. I think anyone with daughters would be saying yes and amen to this article. Pornography is nothing more turning men and women into objects. I think it is sick that my daughter can't walk the streets of any city in Australia and feel safe because perverts want the freedom to watch others having it off.
Posted by runner, Friday, 16 March 2007 3:27:41 PM
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What a weak, whiny society we have become. It may put a lot of noses out of joint, but maybe that's the true legacy of Feminism? Everything is someone else's fault and never our own responsibility, especially when it comes to our own children it seems.

Personal reflection and self-restraint go a long way, though not as much as crying on Oprah about how hard done by you are it seems.
Posted by shorbe, Friday, 16 March 2007 4:34:44 PM
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shorbe

You rock.

About 15 years ago listening to ABC radio I heard a program about girls talking about sex using phrases like;

"I gave him what he wanted"

"I let him have what he wanted" etc were used.

I was watching the Female Brain on SBS and the subject of thinking about sex came up an Dr Susan admitted that she thought about sex more often than she wanted to admit on public TV.

It seems to be apparent as you said that people do not want to take responsibility for their behaviour and would much prefer to blame someone else for their own behaviour and the effects of that behaviour.

My kids when they are fighting always blame the other, however it is usually because one feels ignored by the other. I refuse to take sides unless I see one treat the other badly then I point out the bad behaviour to them.
Posted by JamesH, Friday, 16 March 2007 8:36:48 PM
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