I'm a happily-married man, having successfully courted a strong woman who struggled through tremendous adversity in order to succeed in a traditionally male-dominated field; she didn't ask for special favors, just a regular chance, and with forbearance and determination, she set an example that anyone could be proud of (and, in my case, was attracted to).
I try to be a devoted son to a wonderful mother, a son grateful for the accumulated sacrifices made over a lifetime that have taught this male what is necessary to Grow Up and become a Man; no lesson more precious than the belief that children were a blessing, not a burden, and that motherhood was a status to be cherished, not a curse to be suffered through.
I'm a brother, who keeps a watchful eye on his sister's growing family and admires the careful balance she maintains between her chosen roles of supervisor at work, mother at home. I would sooner cut off my right arm than lift a finger to hurt her, her many kindnesses having been such a precious gift to my life.
Seeing the differences, and celebrating them.
My definition of "Feminism", however, and my admiration for the feminine, both seem a bit out of step with that of others, especially women, who label themselves "feminists" these days.
For instance, I read the following horror story out of Saudi Arabia, and as a Feminist who likes women, I am outraged by its account of a 19-year Saudi woman, raped 14 times, being sentenced to no less than 90 lashes by a judge following the "justice" of Sharia Law:
Saudi gang rape victim faces 90 lashes
[The 19-year-old] said she was blackmailed a year ago into meeting a man who threatened to tell her family they were having a relationship outside wedlock, which is illegal in the ultra-conservative desert kingdom.
After driving off together from a shopping mall near her home, the woman and the man were stopped and abducted by a gang of men wielding kitchen knives who took them to a farm where she was raped 14 times by her captors.
But the judges also decided to sentence the woman, identified by the newspaper only as "G," and the man to lashing for being alone together in the car. Unrelated men and women are forbidden from interacting in public in Saudi Arabia, which strictly enforces Islamic Sharia law.
"G" said one of the judges told she was lucky not to have been given jail time.
The woman also told the paper she tried to commit suicide because of her ordeal and was beaten by her younger brother because the rape had brought shame on their family.
There are severe legal restrictions on women in Saudi Arabia, including a strict dress code required outside the home and a ban on driving.
This column by Diana West, published this week at TownHall, contains the answer we all know, yet so few have the courage to say out loud:
Burnt offerings on the altar of multiculturalism
Only one faith on Earth may be more messianic than Islam: multiculturalism. Without it -- without its fanatics who believe all civilizations are the same -- the engine that projects Islam into the unprotected heart of Western civilization would stall and fail. It's as simple as that.
To live among the believers -- the multiculturalists -- is to watch the assault, the jihad, take place un-repulsed by our suicidal societies. These societies are not doomed to submit; rather, they are eager to do so in the name of a masochistic brand of tolerance that, short of drastic measures, is surely terminal.
I'm not talking about our soldiers, policemen, rescue workers and, now, even train conductors, who bravely and steadfastly risk their lives for civilization abroad and at home. Instead, I'm thinking about who we are as a society at this somewhat advanced stage of war. It is a strange, tentative civilization we have become, with leaders who strut their promises of "no surrender" even as they flinch at identifying the foe.
…Body bags, burn masks and prosthetics are no better protections than make-believe. But these are our weapons, according to the powers that be. These, and an array of high-tech scopes and scanners designed to identify retinas and fingerprints, to detect explosives and metals -- ultimately, I presume, as we whisk through the automatic supermarket door. How strange, though, that even as we devise new ways to see inside ourselves to our most elemental components, we also prevent ourselves from looking full-face at the danger to our way of life posed by Islam.
In not discussing the roots of terror in Islam itself, in not learning about them, the multicultural clergy that shepherds our elites prevents us from having to do anything about them. This is key, because any serious action -- stopping immigration from jihad-sponsoring nations, shutting down mosques that preach violence and expelling their imams, just for starters -- means to renounce the multicultural creed. In the West, that's the greatest apostasy. And while the penalty is not death -- as it is for leaving Islam under Islamic law -- the existential crisis is to be avoided at all costs. Including extinction.