WHAT THE FOURTH WAVE OF FEMINISM SHOULD LOOK LIKE

Hillary Clinton, champion of women, won 57 percent of women voters in New York’s primary; Donald Trump, demeaner of women, won 59 percent. The man who inferred Megyn Kelly was on the rag, dissed Carly Fiorina’s face, and compared Heidi Cruz unfavorably to his supermodel wife was more popular with women than the woman-who-would-be-president. How can feminism ever show its face again? Thank you, Donald Trump.

Vigorous feminism has achieved breathtaking opportunities for women in the last century. The push for equality between the sexes—“Choose the life you want!”—is a success, and sex-based discrimination is illegal. It’s time for feminism to bow out gracefully and make way for the next wave of power—which wave feminism made possible—in women’s lives. Unfortunately, the Hillary Clintons of the world are shoveling sand against the tide to prevent that from happening.

Rather than retiring its tap shoes, feminism screeches forward, ever less powerful, ever less relevant. Feminism has devolved from an aspirational vision of equality to a perpetually childlike and peevish state. Women are first and foremost victims of the patriarchy, and don’t you ever forget it. What would a Hillary Clinton acceptance speech be without a rousing “once and for all, let’s guarantee equal pay for women”? Or a rallying cry to fight the evil men intent on “restricting a woman’s right to make her own health-care decisions”?

A movement that set out to carve space for women’s intellect and power, and which succeeded beautifully, now reduces women to fragile “fainting couch feminists.” How insulting and short-sighted.

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