Here’s the video from my recent SFL Webinar, Women and the Moral Case for Liberty.
This was actually quite a controversial webinar. Many people were very upset that SFL would actually host someone willing to talk about feminism. In Europe, I was accused of being a “socialist infiltrator.” In the US, people, as per ush, ignorantly straw-manned feminism. This is clearly a very important topic, and one that many people are clearly not very well-informed on. So I really appreciate SFL for giving me this opportunity to speak, despite the outcry from the rank-and-file.
Unlike many “free-market” organizations, whose leadership ignore and exclude women and turn a blind eye when their membership is openly hostile, SFL leadership continually rises to the challenge when it comes to sexism in the liberty movement. I am so proud of SFL and honored to be a part of this organization.
Just read this letter that went out to the SFL mailing list to promote the webinar:
When I started college, I aligned myself with the liberal left because of its emphasis on women’s issues and strong feminist rhetoric. After discovering the philosophy of liberty, however, I saw how my belief in women’s equality complimented my newfound identity as a libertarian.
Libertarians and feminists share many common values and priorities, including advancing opportunities for women of all ages and ethnicities, supporting freedom of choice, and working towards reducing the centralization of power in any structure or institution. As a libertarian feminist, I support all of these assertions of human rights by women. The fight for individual liberty and prosperity for all must specifically include women, and their struggle to gain equality with men as both laborers and leaders.
Join Students For Liberty and students from all over the world tomorrow night for a webinar discussion with Sex and the State Editor-in-Chief Cathy Reisenwitz on women’s issues and the morality of liberty. I hope you’ll join me in exploring this important topic in tomorrow’s webinar.
In her autobiography, Elaine Brown, the former leader of the Black Panther Party, notes that “the value of my life had been obliterated as much by being female as by being black and poor. Racism and sexism in America were equal partners in my oppression.” Similarly, as libertarians, we must fight just as hard for the rights of women as we do for the rights of all suppressed people. We must denounce oppression in all of its forms, including a social order primarily dominated by men.
I hope you’ll join me in the conversation tomorrow night! Be sure to register here!
Southeast Regional Director, Students For Liberty
“Unlike many “free-market” organizations, whose leadership ignore and exclude women and turn a blind eye when their membership is openly hostile…”
Name names. Who in the libertarian movement has done this?
Sigh. Fine. I hate to do this to them but… the GOP.
The GOP is the Libertarian Movement? Since when?
You know that the GOP is not a free market organization, nor in toto part of the libertarian movement.
Surely this happens all of the time. Give us some examples of leaders of free market organizations “ignor[ing] and exclud[ing] women and turn[ing] a blind eye when their membership is openly hostile.”
If you want this done, how about you do it?
I’m not making allegations. You are. Do you not have an example?
Perhaps not strictly from a “free market organization” perspective, but politicians like Rick Santorum have a serious problem with women and their concerns: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l-8zaEyvRno
Lots of good stuff in there. I liked your explanation of certain feminist jargon, as you were able to translate it (such as privilege) in a very accessible way. That’s one of the main problems I see that feminists tend to have, that they are used to certain jargon and expect people not familiar with it to understand what’s being said.
That said, from reading different feminist websites, I do see another problem of interpreting social phenomena not with methodological individualism but through holism, as well as generally missing plausible alternative explanations. It’s the common problem of seeing everything through the lens of what you specialize in. This is hardly limited to feminism, but it does seem to be pervasive.
However, probably the most positive feature found in most subgroups of feminism that is compatible with libertarianism is that most feminists want to address and change cultural attitudes instead of simply relying on the state to accomplish their goals. I liked that you focused on gendered expectations as a plausible explanation for certain phenomena, instead of the all too common explanation of straightforward misogyny.
Great job, and I think it worked very well as an introduction to feminism for libertarian.
Good points, I agree, and thank you so much!
Thank goodness for this much-needed talk. The fact that this is controversial within the liberty movement just shows how much it is needed. You are breaking ground Cathy.
Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.