Articles

When the Sexual Revolution Hijacked the Women’s Movement

06/18/20

Stan Guthrie

In the late 1960s, Sue Ellen Browder lost her reporting job at a small daily in Los Angeles because of her pregnancy. Stung by the unfairness, she decided to put her journalistic skills to work in advocating for equal rights. But her journalism quietly morphed into propaganda.

Writing for legendary magazine publisher Helen Gurley Brown and Cosmopolitan, Browder soon discovered another, far deeper, revolution on the agenda—the sexual revolution. And that revolution often undermined the very women it claimed to help.

“The feminist movement,” Browder said in an interview in The Daily Signal, “was fighting for equal opportunity for women in education and the workforce.” The sexual revolution, meanwhile, “was fighting for all sorts of sexual freedoms.”

Browder, who wrote the 2015 book “Subverted: How I Helped the Sexual Revolution Hijack the Women’s Movement,” said Brown didn’t worry about such niceties as “the truth” when selling the sexual revolution to her readers. She gave Cosmo writers a list of instructions on how to fabricate fictitious authorities, cities, and even people to drive home the message of the sexual revolution—touting the desirability of sex without marriage and access to abortion.

The rules read in part:

Unless you are a recognized authority on the subject, profound statements must be attributed to somebody appropriate, even if the writer has to invent the authority …

Try to locate some of the buildings, restaurants, nightclubs, parks, streets, as well as entire case histories … in cities other than New York, even if you deliberately have to plant them elsewhere. Most writers live in New York, 92% of our readers do not.


Browder, who wrote the 2015 book “Subverted: How I Helped the Sexual Revolution Hijack the Women’s Movement,” said Brown didn’t worry about such niceties as “the truth” when selling the sexual revolution to her readers. She gave Cosmo writers a list of instructions on how to fabricate fictitious authorities, cities, and even people to drive home the message of the sexual revolution—touting the desirability of sex without marriage and access to abortion.


As Browder went along, “the magazine spread its mores throughout the country and throughout the culture by pretending that they were much more widespread than they actually were.” Eventually Browder did more than write the propaganda. She started to believe it.

In 1974, the year after Roe, married and already with two children, Browder became pregnant. She and her husband decided that she would get an abortion. It was at the same hospital where she had given birth to her children.

Later the trauma of that decision would haunt her.

“When you start betraying the truth,” Browder said, “it will come back to haunt you. It will get you in the end. And that’s why even though I knew we were making up stories, I still got sucked in and thought abortion would be OK.”

Browder is far from the only woman who feels betrayed by the sexual revolution. The U.S. Supreme Court has just ruled, in Bostock v. Clayton County, that there can be no discrimination in employment, housing, and education based on “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” While the details are yet to be worked out, it seems certain that the Court’s earlier recognition of legalized abortion will look almost quaint by comparison. And the ruling probably makes the proposed Equality Act obsolete.

Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Abigail Shrier, said, “Any biological males who self-identify as females would, under the Equality Act, be legally entitled to enter women’s restrooms, locker rooms and protective facilities such as battered-women’s shelters. This would put women and girls at immediate physical risk.”

It’s a frightening prospect for women—liberated or otherwise.


Writing in The Wall Street Journal, Abigail Shrier, said, “Any biological males who self-identify as females would, under the Equality Act, be legally entitled to enter women’s restrooms, locker rooms and protective facilities such as battered-women’s shelters. This would put women and girls at immediate physical risk.”


This kind of nightmare scenario prompted J.K. Rowling to pen her lengthy recent essay on why she has been speaking out on “sex and gender issues.” Rowling raised questions about the LGBT movement based on science, sociology, and her experience as a sex-abuse survivor. She wrote:

“I want trans women to be safe. At the same time, I do not want to make natal girls and women less safe. When you throw open the doors of bathrooms and changing rooms to any man who believes or feels he’s a woman – and, as I’ve said, gender confirmation certificates may now be granted without any need for surgery or hormones – then you open the door to any and all men who wish to come inside. That is the simple truth.”

The response from the progressive Twitter-verse to the author’s concern for the safety and dignity of biological women has been swift, brutal, and unrelenting. Rowling has been called misogynistic terms unsuitable for any publication, threatened with violence, and told her books should be burned—apparently it’s the “progressives” who are in favor of book-burning now!

Nim Ralph, an activist for trans rights, told CNN that “it’s devastating” to see “somebody as powerful—and have as wide a reach as J.K. Rowling—spend her time in the middle of a pandemic, in the middle of a global uprising for black lives, and in the middle of Pride month, write an essay with a lot of misinformation and transphobia.”

Rowling is unbowed by the attacks by this latest crop of sexual revolutionaries and their propaganda.

“Endlessly unpleasant as its constant targeting of me has been,” she said in her essay, “I refuse to bow down to a movement that I believe is doing demonstrable harm in seeking to erode ‘woman’ as a political and biological class and offering cover to predators like few before it. I stand alongside the brave women and men, gay, straight and trans, who’re standing up for freedom of speech and thought, and for the rights and safety of some of the most vulnerable in our society: young gay kids, fragile teenagers, and women who’re reliant on and wish to retain their single sex spaces.”

Perhaps the original women’s movement still has some signs of life. Sue Ellen Browder certainly hopes so.

 

Stan Guthrie’s latest book is Victorious: Corrie ten Boom and The Hiding Place.

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