Fish Eaters: The Whys and Hows of Traditional Catholicism


``Where the Bishop is, there let the multitude of believers be;
even as where Jesus is, there is the Catholic Church'' Ignatius of Antioch, 1st c. A.D


The Garbage Generation
Chapter VII
The Gilder Fallacy



"The crucial process of civilization," says George Gilder, "is the subordination of male sexual impulses and biology to the long- term horizons of female sexuality. The overall sexual behavior of women in the modern world differs relatively little from the sexual life of women in primitive societies. It is male behavior that must be changed to create a civilized order."

Untrue. There is a striking difference in the behavior of males in civilized and in primitive societies--the difference between motivated, productive, stable males in the former and disruptive or idle or macho or narcissistic drones, or at best hunters and warriors, in the latter. However the most essential difference between the two societies is one less conspicuous but more pivotal: In the civilized society the females accept the regulation of their sexuality on the basis of the Sexual Constitution--monogamous marriage, the Legitimacy Principle, the double standard and female loyalty and chastity; in the primitive society the females reject sexual regulation and embrace the Promiscuity Principle, a woman's right to control her own sexuality. The female behavior is more basic, since it determines whether the males can be motivated to accept a stable and productive lifestyle. The key issue is not, as Gilder imagines, whether men can be induced to accept the Sexual Constitution which he imagines women try to impose, but whether women themselves can be induced to accept it. What causes women in civilized society to accept it is the knowledge that the economic and status rewards bestowed by patriarchal civilization can be obtained in no other way.

Sexual regulation may take unsubtle forms--enforced wearing of veils and chadors, the confinement of women to gynecia, mutilation of female sexual organs, wearing of chastity belts and so forth. In more sophisticated societies the control is internalized and leads to feminist complaints such as the following from Peggy Morgan:

We're really out of control of our sexuality when we see our desires as dirty and troublesome....This leaves us open to being controlled from the outside--letting others (especially men) convince us that we want what they want us to want.

Here, from John Dollard's Caste and Class in a Southern Town, is an example of such manipulative regulation "from the outside"-- males persuading females that they are really regulating themselves:

One of the rituals of the university dances is that of a fraternity of young blades entitled the Key-Ice. During the intermission the lights are turned out and these men march in carrying flaming brands. At the end of the procession four acolytes attend a long cake of ice. Wheeled in on a cart it glimmers in the torches' flare. Then the leader, mounted on a table in the center of the big gymnasium, lifts a glass cup of water and begins a toast that runs: "To Woman, lovely woman of the Southland, as pure and as chaste as this sparkling water, as cold as this gleaming ice, we lift this cup, and we pledge our hearts and our lives to the protection of her virtue and chastity."

For "protection" Peggy Morgan would (correctly) read enforcing.

There can be no civilization without the regulation of female sexuality. As Dr. Gerda Lerner says in discussing the creation of the system of patriarchal civilization, "The [ancient] state had an essential interest in the maintenance of the patriarchal family....Women's sexual subordination was institutionalized in the earliest law codes and enforced by the full power of the state. Women's cooperation in the system was secured by various means: force, economic dependency on the male head of the family, class privileges bestowed upon conforming and dependent women of the upper classes, and the artificially created division of women into respectable and non-respectable women." Dr. Lerner's wording acknowledges the fact, unrecognized by Gilder, that the Sexual Constitution is a male idea imposed upon females. "Social and ethnological facts," says Robert Briffault,

afford no evidence that the influence of woman has ever been exercised in the direction of extending sexual restrictions and tabus, and of imposing chastity on men....Feminine morality consists in unquestioning assent to established estimates and usages....Feminine conservatism defends polygamy and sexual freedom as staunchly as it does monogamy and morality.

What is true of the Sexual Constitution is true of civilization itself:

Those achievements which constitute what, in the best sense, we term civilization [says Briffault] have taken place in societies organized on patriarchal principles; they are for the most part the work of men. Women have had little direct share in them.

Precisely the opposite of Gilder's view that "civilization evolved through the subordination of male sexual patterns--the short-term cycles of tension and release--to the long-term female patterns." "In creating civilization," says Gilder,

women transform male lust into love; channel male wanderlust into jobs, homes, and families; link men to specific children; rear children into citizens; change hunters into fathers, divert male will to power into a drive to create. Women conceive the future that men tend to fell; they feed the children that men ignore.

Why, if so, didn't civilization precede patriarchy and the regulation of female sexuality? This regulation was the precondition enabling males to create stable families from which they could not be expelled. The earlier matriarchal pattern is this: "The women are not obliged to live with their husbands any longer than suits their pleasure or conscience...." In such a society women, including married women, are sexually autonomous and the men can do nothing about it. That's the way women prefer things. When Ann Landers asked her female readers whether they would, if they had the chance over again, make the decision to become mothers, 70 percent said no. Alexandre Dumas, in Les Femmes Qui Tuent, writes that a distinguished Roman Catholic priest had told him that eighty out of one hundred women who married told him afterwards that they regretted it. These women were not trying to impose the Sexual Constitution upon men; they were trying to escape from its control over their own lives. "In the most primitive human societies," says Briffault,

there is nothing equivalent to the domination which, in advanced societies, is exercised by individuals, by classes, by one sex over the other. The notion of such a domination is entirely foreign to primitive humanity; the conception of authority is not understood. The ultimate basis of the respective status of the sexes in advanced patriarchal societies is the fact that women, not being economically productive, are economically dependent, whereas the men exercise economic power both as producers and as owners of private property....The development of durable private property, of wealth, the desire of the constitutionally predatory male to possess it and to transmit it to his descendants, are, in fact, the most common causes of the change from matriarchal to patriarchal institutions.

In primitive societies the loose bonds of matrimony permit much sexual freedom and women outside of these loose bonds enjoy total promiscuity. Briffault again:

In all uncultured societies, where advanced retrospective claims have not become developed, and the females are not regularly betrothed or actually married before they have reached the age of puberty, girls and women who are not married are under no restrictions as to their sexual relations, and are held to be entirely free to dispose of themselves as they please in that respect. To that rule there does not exist any known exception.

No exceptions. Women are promiscuous unless male-created social arrangements compel or induce them to be otherwise. The truth about the creation of civilization is the opposite of what Gilder imagines it to be. Despite his belief that "greater sexual control and discretion--more informed and deliberate sexual powers- -are displayed by women in all societies known to anthropology," American women are today more adulterous than their husbands. 77 percent of the female readers of Glamour magazine approve of women having children out of wedlock.

"Civilized society," says Gilder, "is not more natural than more degenerate social states. It represents a heroic transcendence of the most powerful drives of men." Civilized society is far less natural than primitive society. That's why the Stone Age lasted a million years and civilization has lasted only a few thousand. Civilization represents a heroic transcendence of the most powerful drives of women--the imposition upon them of male regulation. "The female responsibility for civilization," Gilder says,

cannot be granted or assigned to men. Unlike a woman, a man has no civilized role or agenda inscribed in his body. Although his relationship to specific children can give him a sense of futurity resembling the woman's, it always must come through her body and her choices. The child can never be his unless a woman allows him to claim it with her or unless he so controls her and so restricts her sexual activity that he can be sure that he is the father.

Not unlike, but like a woman, a man has no civilized role or agenda inscribed in his body. A woman's reproductive mechanism, like a woman's arms and legs, may be used for civilized or for uncivilized purposes, and the same is true of the man's reproductive mechanism and his arms and legs. Civilization depends on what is in peoples' minds, and the "choices" made in women's minds during the million years of the Stone Age were the same as they are among sexually unregulated women of today who demand the "sacred right to control their own reproduction" without male interference. A sense of futurity "always must come through her body and her choices," says Gilder. But it didn't come until "The Creation of Patriarchy" imposed male control and largely confined female sexuality within patriarchal families.

"Depending chiefly on the degree that the wanton male sex drive succumbs to maternal goals and rhythms," says Gilder,

any society is capable of a variety of sexual states. Civilized and productive societies reflect the long-term disciplines of female nature, upheld by religious and marital codes.

Upheld by male-created religious and marital codes. Hear how feminist Adrienne Rich feels about these codes:

These are some of the methods by which male power is manifested and maintained. Looking at the schema, what surely impresses itself is the fact that we are confronting not a simple maintenance of inequality and property possession, but a pervasive cluster of forces, ranging from physical brutality to control of consciousness, which suggests that an enormous potential counterforce is having to be restrained.

Feminist Marilyn French contrasts the different way things are done in the matriarchy and in the patriarchy:

But "feminine" cultures do not work like "masculine" cultures. "Masculine" cultures aim at success (power, control), are concerned with rules and techniques and instrumentality. "Feminine" cultures are concerned with affection, bonding, cooperation, with being and being-together.

Gilder's "civilized and productive societies" are French's "masculine" societies, which, apart from the wealth they generate, feminists would fain do away with, since they correctly perceive the current sexual encounter as a "struggle for our reproductive rights--for our sexuality, our children and the money we need." The women best able to resist this patriarchal interference, educated career women, commonly reject the role which Gilder supposes all women to cherish. "Highly educated women," says Marie Richmond-Abbott,

are more likely to remain childless than are women with less education...Thus, women who are highly educated and more likely to have careers are less likely to want children because of perceived conflict with their work roles.

It is such women who ask "Where are the men for women like us, men who can deal with women like us...?" "Are they threatened by our new power--or just afraid that we won't need them?" What these autonomous women want is not, as Gilder supposes, to impose their long-term sexual horizons upon males, but to share the male freedom from maternity and regulation. "They envied their husbands who did not have to make similar compromises," says Richmond- Abbott.

An article in the December 4, 1988 Los Angeles Times Magazine, dealing with the lifestyle of six Los Angeles women who "had it all," "the personal stories of six women who have found success," indicated that the six women had altogether a total of two children, both offspring of one woman married to a househusband and employing a full-time live-in housekeeper. A 1985 survey showed that executive females--of all women those most at liberty to be their true selves and exhibit "long- term disciplines of female nature" (if they have them)--were three-fourths divorced or single, and that only 20 percent of them were in their first marriages (versus 64 percent of male executives who were in their first marriages.) Ms. Friedan interprets such female independence as showing that money is a "love-spoiler." She is thinking of men's money as inhibiting women's promiscuity. From the man's point of view, it is the woman's money which is the love-spoiler, or at least the marriage and maternity spoiler. It is the man's aim to integrate love, marriage and maternity into family life, using the male paycheck as the binder; but these economically and sexually emancipated women are able to use their own paychecks to avoid such commitment to marriage and maternity. The birthrate of such women is minuscule, their divorce rate is far higher than that of economically dependent wives, as is their adultery rate, otherwise known as "a woman's right to control her own body." The answer to the question "Where are the men for women like us?" is that there aren't many, because most men want families--because it is men, not women, or not autonomous women, who have the long-term sexual horizons.

If men are not deflected from such women by their statistics for divorce and adultery, they might be deflected by those on coronary heart disease. According to the Framingham Heart Study, men married to women with thirteen or more years of education were 2.6 times more likely to have coronaries. If these women are in addition liberated to work outside the home the men are 7.6 times more likely to have coronaries.

Men ought to avoid such women as they avoid the plague, the Internal Revenue Service, nuclear waste and low-density lipoproteins. Understandably, feminists and house-males hold a different view. Hear one of them, Professor Herb Goldberg:

Finally, the best insurance against losing everything to a wife in a divorce or custody battle is the choice of a woman partner who delights in her own separate identity, has a history of relating to men by taking equal responsibility, does not see women as victims of men, and has created a fulfilling autonomous life for herself prior to meeting you.

Worse advice for a man who wants a family would be hard to find. "Women," says Marie Richmond-Abbott, and she means elitist career-women,

have been delaying marriage, getting higher education, and entering nontraditional jobs. They have come to marriage with their own incomes and ideas of equality. They want fewer children and demand more power in their families. Women are participating more in the occupational world and in politics. While it will be difficult for poor women to follow this pattern, middle-class women who have established it are unlikely to give it up.

As will be explained in Chapter IX, these women have climbed the "marriage gradient": their education and economic independence (both major goals of feminism) put them where there are few men to "marry up" to. They are less likely to marry, less likely to procreate, more likely to divorce, more likely to be unfaithful, more likely to settle for "alternative life styles." Their redeeming virtue, as indicated, is their low birthrate. "If sex role change is to occur at the individual level," says Ms. Richmond-Abbott (and you can believe she is working in her academic grove to facilitate such change),

men and women would have to socialize their children in a different manner. They would have to be aware of their own expectations and of their behavior toward their children, and they would have to monitor the environment in which their children grow and play so that it is nonsexist.

She offers the familiar suggestions about non-sexist toys and non-sexist socialization, so that boys will be encouraged to be nurses, elementary school teachers and airline attendants, girls to be astronauts, soldiers and policepersons. Males will vacate the family-provider role to enable females to take it over, while the liberated women vacate their traditional role as housewives and mothers, turning these functions over to the lower orders and the pigmented races.

Speaking of what he perceives as the sexual superiority and greater sense of responsibility of females Gilder has this:

Her very body, her whole being, tells her that she will have to make long-term commitments to children, that her life is not something that runs from moment to moment, from one momentary pleasure or intrigue to another, but that she is engaged in a larger purpose that extends into the future.

Why doesn't the female body convey this useful information to the one and one-half million women who abort their unwanted pregnancies every year?

Here is an episode from Kate Chopin's feminist classic The Awakening describing her heroine and her lover and illustrating female resentment over male regulation:

"Why have you been fighting against it?" she asked. Her face glowed with soft lights.

"Why? Because you were not free; you were Leonce Pontellier's wife....Something put into my head that you cared for me; and I lost my senses. I forgot everything but a wild dream of your some way becoming my wife."

"Your wife!"

"Religion, loyalty, everything would give way if only you cared....Oh! I was demented, dreaming of wild, impossible things, recalling men who had set their wives free, we have heard of such things."

"You have been a very, very foolish boy, wasting your time dreaming of impossible things when you speak of Mr. Pontellier setting me free! I am no longer one of Mr. Pontellier's possessions to dispose of or not. I give myself where I choose. If he were to say, 'Here, Robert, take her and be happy; she is yours,' I should laugh at you both."

"I love you," she whispered, "only you; no one but you. It was you who awoke me last summer out of a life-long, stupid dream. Oh! you have made me so unhappy with your indifference. Oh! I have suffered, suffered! Now you are here we shall love each other, my Robert. We shall be everything to each other. Nothing else in the world is of any consequence."

Nothing else--not for the next half hour or for the whole weekend or until her husband returns from his business trip. It is the boyfriend and the husband who think in terms of long-term sexual horizons and marriage, the heroine who thinks in terms of the present, who is willing to end it all rather than submit to being confined by the patriarchal sexual constitution to long-term commitments to her husband and her children. When, at the end of the book, the heroine drowns herself in order to escape this trap,

She felt like some new-born creature, opening its eyes in a familiar world that it had never known....She thought of Leonce and the children. They were a part of her life. But they need not have thought that they could possess her, body and soul. How Mademoiselle Reisz would have laughed, perhaps sneered, if she knew! "And you call yourself an artist! What pretensions, Madame! The artist must possess the courageous soul that dares and defies!"

Kinsey was radically mistaken in thinking that women control the moral codes: If they support these codes, they do so because of compulsion or perceived advantage or simple conservatism, not because their bodies tell them they have to make long-term commitments.

The "intuition of mysterious new realms of sexual and social experience," says Gilder, "evoked by the body and spirit of woman, is the source of male love and ultimately of marriage." Very edifying. But it fails to explain that where women run things, as in the ghettos, little attention is paid to marriage or to long-term cycles of sexuality, and instead there are so many one-night stands, so many children having children. Where men run things, as in Oriental families, the long-term cycles extend backward to ancestor worship and forward to education, careers, the family's good name, and care for the hereditaments and the patrimony. The women Gilder writes about have long-term sexual horizons because men have socialized them to have them. Feminist anthropologist Evelyn Reed has people like Gilder in mind when she writes of

the modern puritanical outlook on female sexuality, and...the reluctance of men in patriarchal society to acknowledge the independence and freedom of primitive women in sexual intercourse. That this independence existed cannot be doubted if one reads the reports of settlers and missionaries; they were quite offended by it.

She cites the observations made by Father Jacob Baegert on the Indians of southern California two hundred years ago:

They met without any formalities, and their vocabulary did not even contain the words "to marry"....The good padre complained that the women were independent and "not much inclined to obey their lords," and that after the wedding ceremony at the mission "the new married couple start off in different directions...as if they were not more to each other today than they were yesterday...." Worst of all, they failed to suffer from shame, fear, jealousy, or guilt about their sexual freedom:

They lived, in fact, before the establishment of the missions in their country, in utter licentiousness, and adultery was daily committed by every one without shame and without any fear, the feeling of jealousy being unknown to them. Neighbouring tribes visited each other very often only for the purpose of spending some days in open debauchery, and during such times a general prostitution prevailed.

That's the way it was with savages in California two hundred years ago, and that's the way it is coming to be in California today. When Marabel Morgan, the born-again Christian anti-feminist spoke to an audience of women about the importance of pleasing men in bed, and confessed she sometimes found it difficult because her husband's sex drive resembled that of a 747 and hers that of a tiny Piper cub,

Morgan's breezy delivery gave no clue that she saw anything at all odd about this admission, but many of the women in the audience responded as though she had said something truly bizarre. As one commented, "The women I know are the 747s--and they're all griping because the men they married aren't even Piper Cubs. They're gliders."

These are the women who ask, "Where are the men for women like us, men who can deal with women like us?" There aren't many. "Women like us" turn men off, as Marabel Morgan tried to explain to them. Their contempt for Mrs. Morgan suggests that they enjoy turning men off. They might have made out quite well with the Digger Indian males of two hundred years ago but they should be-- and are--shunned by males with long-term horizons. Fear of intimacy, according to sexperts, "is an endemic feature of relationships in the 80s. Sex is perhaps the ultimate act of intimacy, and people can feel profoundly vulnerable in the letting go of defenses that it entails. In getting 'close' they may be afraid of getting hurt."

The Morgan quote comes from a review of Remaking Love: The Feminization of Sex, by Barbara Ehrenreich, Elizabeth Hess and Gloria Jacobs. These ladies, according to the Newsweek reviewer, think that

The real sexual revolution...has occurred in the attitudes and behavior of women, and this revolution has taken place at the behest of women, not of men....[T]he backlash against sexual permissiveness we're witnessing today needs to be viewed as a backlash against women's quest for autonomy.

Autonomy--otherwise known as the Promiscuity Principle, otherwise known as the First Law of Matriarchy. What is being rejected is the patriarchal socialization which led Gilder to suppose women possessed long-term sexual horizons and wanted men to be sexually responsible just like themselves. The fact is that males, precisely because it is they who have the long-term sexual horizons, find such promiscuous women unattractive. Feminist anthropologist Evelyn Reed understands these things better than Gilder. Paraphrasing Engels, she writes:

It was the drastic social changes brought about by the patriarchal class institutions of the family, private property, and the state which produced the historic downfall of the female sex. In the new society men became the principal producers, while the women were relegated to home and family servitude. Dispossessed from their former place in society at large, they were robbed not only of their economic independence but also of their former sexual freedom. The new institution of monogamous marriage arose to serve the needs of men of property.

This freedom, which Gilder supposed to be the male pattern, is the pattern of unsocialized, unpatriarchalized females, who view the requirement of chastity and loyalty as their "historic downfall." Men insist on marriage and female chastity because this is the only way they can have legitimate children, the motivators of the wealth-creation Ms. Reed speaks of. Patriarchy and wealth are the good twins; matriarchy and violence the bad twins. It is the wealth created by the patriarchal system which reconciles females to renouncing the feminist Promiscuity Principle and accepting patriarchy's Legitimacy Principle.

More from Reed:

It was only when their own communal society was overthrown that these former governesses of society were defeated and sent, dispersed and fragmentized, into individual households and the stifling life of kitchen and nursery chores.

All this knowledge that we can gain from a study of prehistory will not only help women to understand their present dilemma but also provide guidelines on how to proceed in the struggle for women's emancipation, which is again coming to the fore.

They smell victory. As S. L. Andreski says of the decline of fatherhood, "one of the most important changes taking place in our society,"

If the trend...continues without a reversal we shall have witnessed a turning-point in the evolution of mankind: perhaps a return to matrilineal descent, which may have been common before it was replaced by patriarchy at the dawn of the more complex civilizations.

No perhaps about it. Patriarchy was the precondition for the more complex civilization.

"It is sometimes imagined," says Gilder,

that the gynocentrism of many poor black families is a strength--the secret of black survival through the harrowing centuries of slavery and racism. In a sense, of course, this is true. In any disintegrating society, the family is reduced to the lowest terms of mother and child. The black family has long rested on the broad shoulders and heart of the black woman.

Yet this secret of black survival is also a secret of ghetto stagnation. It is quite simply impossible to sustain a civilized society if the men are constantly disrupting it.

Most of the male disrupters had mothers who undermined patriarchal sexual stability by divorce, marital disloyalty, or promiscuity. It is the female who initiates the cycle which culminates in the visible male disruption. Gilder blames the male; the law imprisons the male; and as crime continues to increase undeterred by punishment, society imagines it must compensate for the withdrawal of males from the system by increased subsidization of females--subsidization which causes them to imagine themselves independent of males and free to follow the Promiscuity Principle. Improperly socialized women like things this way because they lack the long-term horizons Gilder ascribes to them.

It is, complains feminist Ellen Goodman, "by and large men who define 'normal,' even while committing 90 percent of the violent crimes, and waging nearly all the wars." The violent crimes, she says--those requiring lots of testosterone and heavy musculature, crimes which are therefore male specialties. There are, however, crimes which both men and women commit; and if it is desired to know whether men or women are more virtuous it will be proper to consult the statistics for such crimes--check violations, forgery, perjury, child abuse. Ask a supermarket manager whether men or women commit more check violations, ask a social worker whether fathers or mothers commit more child abuse, ask a lawyer whether men or women commit more perjury, and you will learn something about the double standard of morality of which feminists complain.

Male antisociality is typically violent; female antisociality is typically sexual. The relationship between the two is indicated by Ramsey Clark's statistic that three-quarters of criminals come from "broken" (read: female-headed) homes. The way to stop generating these violent male criminals is to clean out their breeding places--to stop creating female-headed homes.

It is now feminist doctrine that the creation of the female- headed family need not be preceded by the formalities of marriage and divorce, that all extra-patriarchal females are entitled to a free ride for violating the Legitimacy Principle. Feminist Professor Barbara Bergmann wants child support payments from absent fathers to be "the same for children born out of wedlock as for children of divorced or separated parents." The woman has all the rights, the man all the obligations. The female-headed family is to be the norm, as in the ghetto, with the resulting male disruptiveness serving as propaganda-grist for further female rejection of the patriarchy.

Here is another assertion of the Promiscuity Principle, from America's wise woman, Abby Van Buren: "There is only one reason to make love, and that's because you feel like it." Also: "to marry because you want to be a mother is a poor reason for marriage." This means getting rid of the patriarchal Sexual Constitution and returning to the Promiscuity Principle of the Digger Indians. The existing policy is that such socially sanctioned unchastity gives Mom title to her children and to her ex-husband's or ex-boyfriend's paycheck. The biological tenuousness of paternity suffices to establish the social centrality of Mom's role and to make her economic subsidization imperative.

This repudiation of patriarchy implies the repudiation of Betty Friedan's Sleeping Beauty feminism, which averred that "women have outgrown the housewife role" and should seek self- actualization in the real world of male achievement. But most women who hope to liberate themselves by creating fatherless families will find themselves, like the women of the ghettos, not free to pursue high status careers but locked in more securely than ever to the hated maternal functions from which feminism promised to liberate them.

Here is the crux of the Gilder fallacy. "Men," he says, "have no ties to the long-term human community so deep or tenacious as the mother's to her child." Check. "Only the woman has a dependable and easily identifiable connection to the child--a tie on which society can rely." Check. But the facts cited show that this tie does not create a tie to the husband, not one which stabilizes the two-parent family. The way to stabilize the two- parent family (which society needs because it produces better behaved and higher achieving children) and to prevent the creation of the female-headed family (which produces most of the criminal class) is for society to maintain the tie between the child and the father by guaranteeing to him that his wife cannot take his child from him. It is for the purpose of providing this guarantee that patriarchal society exists.

As will be more fully explained in Chapter X, the only way for society to provide this guarantee is to reverse the existing custody disposition in divorce cases and return to the 19th century practice of awarding custody of children to fathers rather than mothers.

"The human race," thinks Gilder, "met the challenge of transition from hunting to agriculture and from agriculture to industry in part by shifting the male pursuit from game to women." Men had always pursued women. What was needed to motivate men to accept the "long-term horizons" Gilder writes about was the assurance that the pursuit of women would lead to the "creation of patriarchy," a political system based not on a matriline but on the family, of which the man knew himself to be the permanent head, not liable to be exiled at the pleasure of the mother. Only such a stable reproductive arrangement could motivate a man to accept long-term family responsibilities, to commit himself to a lifetime of work and the creation of wealth, wealth which his wife would have to know to be unobtainable outside of patriarchal family arrangements. This is the motivational basis of civilization.

"In this process," continues Gilder, "society became strongly dependent on the institutions by which the hunter is domesticated--chiefly now the institution of marriage. In general, across the range of modern life, marriage became indispensable to socializing the mass of males."

Gilder fails to see that it became no less indispensable to socializing females, a fact well understood by feminists such as Adrienne Rich, Gerda Lerner and Betty Friedan, who emphasize women's reluctance to submit to traditional marriage and their wish to gain its economic advantages for themselves without submitting to patriarchal constraints.

Gilder is on the mark when he says

The desire of men to claim their children thus emerged as the crucial impulse of civilized life. It is chiefly in the nuclear household that the man's connection to his children becomes central. He is the key provider. His fatherhood is direct and unimpeachable, and he identifies, loves, and provides for his offspring. His role as provider then becomes almost as crucial for the maintenance of the family as the mother's role. He thus can feel equal to the mother within the family and he can join it without damage to his sense of himself as a man.

But not only is Gilder unable to see the reluctance of many women to accept this nuclear family arrangement, so necessary to men, he is unable to see how it is being destroyed by a 50 percent divorce rate. "His fatherhood [in the nuclear household] is direct and unimpeachable," he says. Not for the 50 percent exiled by divorce. "Marriage became essential to socializing the mass of males," he goes on. Half of them are no longer the beneficiaries of this socialization, and the other half realize that the "essential" prop formerly provided by society's support of the conjugal family is no longer dependable. The desire of men to retain their children is as much "the crucial impulse of civilized life" as their desire to procreate them in the first place; and since neither aim now has society's guarantee, the entire system of male motivation based on the conjugal family is in process of destruction by women's unwillingness to submit to its constraints and by society's acceptance of this unwillingness as a woman's right.

Gilder acknowledges "that economic growth and capitalism depend in crucial degree on familial and sexual organization" and that "the role of the male is the Achilles' heel of civilized society," but he imagines that what is required is simply for men to consent to conjugal family arrangements which women in large numbers are refusing to consent to. "By the late 1970s," say Barbara Ehrenreich, Elizabeth Hess, and Gloria Jacobs,

a majority of women--of all ages--had accepted with pleasure progressive attitudes toward sex....Many of Cosmo's readers were as sexually satisfied as Redbook's (the median reported was nine lovers per woman) and a little more brazen to boot: "I have lovers because sex feels good," said one, and claimed another, "I have lovers because what else is there in life that's so much fun as turning on a new man, interesting him, conquering him?" Among Playboy's readers in 1983, young married wives were "fooling around" more than their husbands....[T]he true heart of the sexual revolution was a change in women's behavior, not men's.

It may be that patriarchally socialized women can motivate fathers, but unsocialized women are the enemies of the patriarchal arrangement, and women, socialized or not, do little, as Briffault truly says, directly to create civilization itself. Gilder emphasizes the essentialness of the conjugal family to civilization; but he cannot see that it is the male who is most motivated to create and preserve it. He understands that all societies (including savage societies) are built upon the tie between mother and offspring. But whereas both biology and experience inform the female that this tie is dependable in any sort of society with any sexual arrangements, and that accordingly women need not have the long-term sexual horizons Gilder claims for them, biology and experience both inform the male that the father- child tie is precarious and requires him not only to take long-term views but also to create social structures which will guarantee the legitimacy and inalienability of his children. Gilder refuses to see that this guarantee has now been lost, that society is returning to matrilineality, and returning likewise to the patterns of short-term, compulsive sexuality which Gilder associates with males but which are grounded in matrilineality and found consistently in such matrilineal societies as those of the Tongans and the Todas and the Takelomas and the Mandans and the Montagnais and the Canelas and the Caraijas and the Nandi and the Masai and the Baila and the Akamba and the Morus and the Dume Pygmies and the Kadza and the !Kung and the Gidjangali--and the ghettos.

Gilder quaintly assumes that most marital breakdown results from "powerful men" abandoning the wives of their youth and lusting after their young secretaries. A moment's reflection would convince him that there aren't that many "powerful men," and that high status men have a lower divorce rate than most other males. Besides which, he ought to know that most divorces are initiated by, and granted to, women.

"Unless marriage is permanent and sacred," he says, "it becomes an increasingly vulnerable and embattled institution that collapses before every temptation and crisis." The way to make it permanent is not by urging men to submit to women's "long-term sexual horizons" but by ensuring that marriage offers women long- term economic and status advantages unavailable outside marriage.

The following passage suggests that Gilder never heard of Tawney, that he supposes capitalism is a Roman Catholic creation, that the present sexual crisis is not a post-World War II problem but originated in the eighteenth century, and that a generation ago girls were as promiscuous as they are today:

Around the world, social decline and sexual chaos is the universal harvest of reliance on secular, rationalist moral codes. In two centuries of effort, secular humanists have yet to come up with a way of transmitting ethics to children or persuading girls to say No. Without a religious foundation, embracing all the essentials of Catholic teaching, neither marriage nor civilization, neither capitalism nor democracy can long survive in the modern world.

The present sexual anarchy has not resulted from "two centuries of secular humanism"; it has developed mostly within the last generation (not, to be sure, without predisposing causes), and it has occurred largely in consequence of government welfare programs, the pressures of feminism, the 50 percent divorce rate and society's error in supposing that its props are required for the strongest link in the family, the mother's role, rather than for the weakest link, the father's role.

There can be no greater contrast than that between what Gilder imagines women to think and what women actually do think once they have rejected the patriarchal socialization men have imposed on them for the last several millennia. Prior to the imposition of this patriarchal socialization, the relations between the sexes were governed by the first law of matriarchy: "Women control our own bodies."

"Some distinguishing features of a woman-centered social system," says Paula Gunn Allen, "include free and easy sexuality and wide latitude in personal style."

The 7th century Bedouin poetess Maysun was a woman who knew both the civilized life of a caliph's wife and the free, wild and matricentric life of the nomad. In the following verses she lamented how her condition as a wife bound her to the contract of marriage. She had no yearning (such as Gilder supposes women to have) to impose this contract or to impose civilization and family stability on a lawless male. It was a male who imposed it on her and she didn't like it:

Breeze-flowing tents I prefer
to ponderous halls
And desert dress
to diaphanous veils.
A crust I'd eat in the awning's shade,
not rolls,
And watched by a dog that barks
not a cat that smiles,
I'd sleep to the wind's time,
not to the tambourine.
A youth's impetuous sword,
not a husband's wiles,
Uncouth slim tribesmen I love,
not corpulent men.

"Women," says Adrienne Rich,

have married because it was necessary, in order to survive economically, in order to have children who would not suffer economic deprivation or social ostracism, in order to remain respectable, in order to do what was expected of women because coming out of "abnormal" childhoods they wanted to feel "normal," and because heterosexual romance has been represented as the great female adventure, duty, and fulfillment. We may faithfully or ambivalently have obeyed the institution, but our feelings--and our sensuality--have not been tamed or contained within it.

Protests of this sort are lost on Gilder, who imagines the patriarchally socialized female is the real thing:

The difference between the sexes gives the woman the superior position in most sexual encounters. The man may push and posture, but the woman must decide. He is driven; she must set the terms and conditions, goals and destination of the journey. Her faculty of greater natural restraint and selectivity makes the woman the sexual judge and executive, finally appraising the offerings of men, favoring one and rejecting another, and telling them what they must do to be saved or chosen. Managing the sexual nature of a healthy society, women impose the disciplines, make the choices, and summon the male effort that support it.

Modern society relies on predictable, regular, long-term activities, corresponding to the sexual faculties of women. The male pattern is the enemy of social stability.

Modern society relies on predictable, regular, long-term activities, corresponding to the sexual demands of the hated Double Standard, imposed by men over the resistance of women, as the pattern found in non-modern, non-patriarchal societies shows. In such societies, as Robert Briffault truly says, and as the condition of the ghettos and the Indian reservations sufficiently proves, "there is no original disposition in women to chastity":

[W]hile we everywhere find chastity imposed by men upon women, it would be difficult to find any instances of a corresponding imposition of chastity by women upon men apart from the primitive tabus which have reference to menstruation, pregnancy and suckling.

The selectivity of which Gilder writes is that of civilized--patriarchally socialized--women with economic and status motives for behaving themselves as men wish them to behave. But even within civilized society, continues Briffault, "Whenever individual women enjoy...a position of power, far from imposing or observing chastity, they avail themselves of their independence to exercise sexual liberty." Then they talk little about the sanctity of motherhood and sound instead like this:

I have what I call the "gang boyfriend motif." I have one boyfriend I've had for eleven years. He's been married twice in that time, and I know and his wife knows we're both better off not having him full-time. He's my main man. Then I have other boyfriends, usually out of town, who I see fairly regularly. I also have one other boyfriend in town, who I really like a lot. They all add up to one big boyfriend, and all my needs get taken care of.

What Gilder supposes to be female nature is what Betty Friedan describes as a "mask" designed to deceive the Gilders of the world:

I protest--on behalf of women and men and my ever-deepening respect for the power and the glory and the mystery of human sex. I protest that passionate sexual human love cannot be experienced if it is divorced from what we really are ourselves. Those obsolete masculine and feminine mystiques-- the masks we've been wearing which didn't let us be or know each other. The Biblical word for sexual love is knowing.

Locked in those iron masks, we finally choke with impotent rage and become immune to each other's touch.

Referring to the growing economic independence of women, she says, "We are in a state of transition now"--transition to a society where women can show how they really feel, which is this:

The bitterness, the rage underneath the ruffles, which we used to take out on ourselves and our kids and finally on the men in bed, is out in the open now, scaring us in its scorching intensity, goading men to exasperation and despair. And now the men are letting it hang out, too: how they really feel about female parasites, the dead weights, alimony, the sexual nothingness, the lonely lovelessness of the manipulated breadwinner.

"Female parasites" motivated by economics and a desire for status within the patriarchal system to assume the masks which deceive the Gilders, but which Betty Friedan and her feminist sisters see through. Here is one of Ms. Friedan's friends:

I've messed up my kids, devoting my life to them that way. I've been giving my husband a very hard time these last few years. All my hostility is coming out. And now he is a successful lawyer, he has made enough money, he wants to have a good time. He wants me with him, sailing, skiing, entertaining, and I'm in school, making up for lost time. I'm alive again. I don't know what's going to happen to my marriage. My husband is a handsome, successful man. A lot of women are after him. If I have to choose between my own life and my marriage, I have to save my life and take the consequences.

It's a safe bet these consequences will be calculated with an eye on economics and on what her lawyer tells her she can expect in alimony and child support money from the divorce court.

What Ms. Friedan says about female autonomy is the same as what Monica Sjoo and Barbara Mor say, with the difference that Ms. Friedan tells women they should be ashamed of themselves for not sharing in patriarchal achievement, while Sjoo and Mor tell women the arena of patriarchal achievement should be destroyed:

When women control our bodies, our daily lives, our environment, and our goals, we don't inflict on ourselves the terrible split between motherhood and self-realization that patriarchy and the nuclear family inflict on us. The split is a structural one, indigenous to male-dominated environments.

The way to get rid of this terrible split is by women's achieving "total sexual and reproductive autonomy" [see page 00 above], autonomy which confers upon women the right of not being subsidized by, and therefore dependent upon, males. Total autonomy means abolishing the contract of marriage and men's responsibilities to women.

The "male pattern" which Gilder thinks the enemy of social stability is not the male pattern in patriarchy but the male pattern in matrilineal societies such as the ghetto, the pattern where males acquiesce in female promiscuity ("autonomy"), because they have too little bargaining power to do anything about it.

Why should the phrase "the male pattern" be used to designate male acquiescence in female promiscuity? Why should it not rather be used to designate the pattern of regulated sexuality imposed by wiser patriarchal males who understand the relationship between unregulated female sexuality and the disruptive masculine displays which Gilder perceives as "the male pattern"? "He must make a durable commitment," says Gilder. Why say he must when, with a 50 percent divorce rate, he cannot?

Even then [says Gilder] he is dependent on the woman to love and nurture his child. Even in the context of the family, he is sexually inferior. If he leaves, the family may survive without him. If she leaves, it goes with her. He is replaceable; she is not. He can have a child only if she acknowledges his paternity; her child is inexorably hers.

Dependent on the woman to love and nurture his child? Not if she can (like Winston Churchill's mother) afford a nanny, or can (as feminists are trying to do) screw the government for free child care. If she leaves the family goes with her? Not in Victorian society, where women like Lady Caroline Norton complained of the loss of their children following divorce and where J. S. Mill complained that "they are by law his children." (When the suggestion was made to Mill that mothers, rather than fathers, should be given the custody of the children of divorce, he thought the idea had merit, but he refused to advocate it publicly because he said it was an idea for which the public's mind was insufficiently prepared to make such advocacy useful.)

Not according to the Corpus Juris, which says, "at common law and under some statutes, the primary right to the custody and care of minor children is generally in the father." Not in sixteenth century Germany, where "illegitimate children, who abounded, were usually taken into the father's home after marriage." Not in Freud's Austria, where the great psychologist stipulated in his will that if he died before his children were grown, they should be taken from their mother and placed in a foster home. Not in Iran, where father-custody is automatic following divorce. Not in Renaissance Venice, where, "even in cases of adultery, the wife's lover had to pay for her expenses if she became pregnant, then had to rear the child, and the wife was returned to her husband after the birth." Not in Ibsen's Doll's House, where Nora acknowledges that her husband Thorwald is better able to rear the children than she is. Not in America in 1848, when the Seneca Falls feminists complained that women automatically lost their children in the event of divorce, and when judges made assertions such as this from the bench:

It is a well-settled doctrine of the common law, that the father is entitled to the custody of his minor children, as against the mother and everybody else; that he is bound for their maintenance and nurture, and has the corresponding right to their obedience and their services.

Gilder imagines that the way things have been in the 20th century American matriarchy is the way they have always been and always must be. "He is readily replaceable; she is not"? He is replaceable if his paycheck can be taken from him or if the government will subsidize female promiscuity, illegitimacy and matriarchy via AFDC. Without these subsidizations, it would be found that a mother-surrogate is far more easily obtainable (in the form of a paternal grandmother, a stepmother, a nanny or a housekeeper) than a breadwinner.

"Only a specific woman can bear a specific child" says Gilder,

and her tie to it is personal and unbreakable. When she raises the child she imparts in privacy her own individual values. She can create children who transcend consensus and prefigure the future, children of private singularity rather than "child-development policy." She is the vessel of the ultimate values of the nation. The community is largely what she is and what she demands in men.

Her tie to "her" child is "unbreakable." It is in the American matriarchy, as it is among the Tekelmas, the Mandans, the Canelas and other savages--whereas the father's tie in these savage societies is easily breakable, which is why these savages, like ourselves, have underachieving children. "She imparts her own individual values"? Either she fails to, or her values are defective, for what she imparts is the socialization which produces 75 percent of the criminal class.

Gilder gets so swept away by his own rhapsodizing about mothers and maternity that the logic of what he is dealing with eludes him. He tells of the central position of women in both home and civilization, of mother-love, of long-term ties of the mother to her child and their depth and tenacity, of the need for her to transmit her values to her offspring and of how the success or failure of civilization depends on this transmission, of her deep moral, aesthetic, religious, nurturant, social, sexual concerns, which involve the ultimate goals of human life, of how she is the repository of the ultimate values of the nation and of how the community is largely shaped by her, of the existence of a uniquely feminine moral sense rooted in webs of relationships and responsibility, in intimacy and caring, a moral sense superior to the masculine one of rules, hierarchy, aggression, lust and abstraction. He assures us that the mother's tie to her child is the ultimate basis of all morality, based on the preciousness of life, beginning in the womb and breast, morally paramount, unimpeachable, and so on and on. What, then, of the fact which will not go away--the one about three-quarters of criminals coming from female-headed homes where they reaped the benefits of this superior virtue, this uniquely feminine moral sense so much nobler than that of the male? These criminals had the benefits of all of Mom's goodness without any dilution by masculine influence.

Gilder's answer: "If children lack the close attention of mothers and the disciplines and guidance of fathers they tend to become wastrels who burden and threaten society rather than do its work." This is supposed to show the importance of Mom's influence. It's like arguing that milk will cure scurvy. The cure for scurvy is not milk but vitamin C; and the analogue of Gilder's argument is to insist that patients deprived of milk and vitamin C suffer from scurvy, and therefore they need more milk. The criminal class doesn't suffer from mother-deprivation. It suffers from father-deprivation. Mom has stinted nothing--she has given her all to the criminal class. Criminals have many problems, but mother-deprivation is not one of them.

"In terms of mental and physical disease and life expectancy," says Gilder, "divorce damages the man far more than the woman":

Divorced men of every age group between thirty-five and sixty- four have a mortality rate three and a third times as high as divorced women....Divorced men are three and a half times as likely as divorced women to commit suicide, and four times more likely to die in an accidental fire or explosion. Murder claims three divorced men for every divorced woman, as does cirrhosis of the liver. And, in the realm of more conventional mortality, divorced men are six times as likely as divorced women to die of heart disease.

Gilder writes as though men and women passed through the same experience. This is like comparing a female driver and a male pedestrian who experience the same "accident," and inferring from the resulting injuries that females are tougher than males. Both parties experience "divorce," but the man experiences in addition the massive anti-male discrimination of the divorce court, where he loses his children, his home, his property, his future income--his role. If wives were deprived of all these things, if ex-wives were rounded up and jailed on Mother's Day for not subsidizing their ex- husbands, as ex-husbands are commonly rounded up on Father's Day by clambering District Attorneys and thrown in jail for not subsidizing their ex-wives, we would hear something about men's greater ability to survive the trauma of divorce.

Here, from David Chambers's Making Fathers Pay, is the way the male is handled in divorce cases. Can one imagine a judge ordering an ex-wife to clean her ex-husbands's home and then scolding her for failure to do so in some such manner as this?

The Court: All right, Mr. Connors, bring up Mr. Neal. (Mr. Neal approaches the bench.)

The Court: Mr. Neal, do you know why you're here?

Defendant: Yes.

The Court: I can't hear you.

Defendant: Yes.

The Court: Why are you here?

Defendant: Back alimony.

The Court: It's not alimony; I never ordered alimony.

Defendant: No.

The Court: You were never ordered by Judge Johnston to pay alimony.

Defendant: No, support.

The Court: That's right. You were ordered to pay support for your children, not alimony for your wife. And that was back in '63, and he only made you pay ten dollars per week per child. You have five, is that right?

Defendant: Yes.

The Court: Do you know how much you're in arrears?

Defendant: Yes.

The Court: How much?

Defendant: It's over ten thousand.

The Court: Well, why are you that far behind? Why haven't you paid something on it?

Defendant: Well, I had other bills and trying to make a living myself; I just couldn't seem to pay nothing.

The Court: Well, what do you mean "other bills"? You knew you had these children.

Defendant: Yes.

The Court: These children didn't ask to be brought into the world, Mr. Neal. How did you expect those children to get food in their little stomachs and clothes on their back, shoes on their feet, boots in the wintertime? Where were you working all this time?

Defendant: I had different jobs.

The Court: Well, why haven't you held a steady job? What's your trouble? I'd like to know.

Defendant: Nothing.

The Court: Well, then, why haven't you held onto a steady job if nothing's wrong with you?

Defendant: Just trying to find something that pays more money.

The Court: But you can't do it--

Defendant: No.

The Court: --going from one insignificant job to another. Were you born here in Flint?

Defendant: Yes.

The Court: You knew that you could make a hundred and fifty, hundred and sixty dollars in the factory here. Why didn't you apply to the factory?

Defendant: I did. They won't take me back because I got a hernia and I couldn't pass the test again.

The Court: You got married [a second time] in '65. Did you marry a Flint woman?

Defendant: Yes.

The Court: Is she working?

Defendant: No. She can't work; she's a diabetic now.

The Court: You knew you had these five children before you married her. These are the ones that come first. I don't care about your second wife. But these children are too small and I'm not going to let them go around in garbage cans looking for food or something, or to put shoes on their feet. If you're strong enough to marry a second time and go to bed, you're strong enough to get a job that will pay and feed these children. You have no business assuming that responsibility when you had five little tots to take care of. They didn't ask to be brought into this world, Mr. Neal. You've defied this court. You think that laws were made for everybody but you. Well, I'm going to teach you a lesson. Do you have anything to say why I shouldn't cite you for contempt of Court?

Defendant: (No audible response.)

The Court: Do you have anything to say, I asked you?

Defendant: No.

The Court: You have nothing to say in mitigation of what you've done to these children?

Defendant: I know I did wrong.

The Court: Yes. If you would have sent at least ten dollars a week for the five of them, at least we would have seen that you were making an effort. You didn't even send a nickel.

Defendant: I did send money off and on, but right to them; I didn't send it to the court.

The Court: Oh, really, and you expect the court to believe that?

Defendant: No.

The Court: You're darn tooting I don't believe it. This court finds nothing wrong with you. Hernia or no hernia, you had no business leaving the Fisher body when you were building up seniority, fringe benefits, everything. You take a leave of absence and go to Florida with a new wife. You may have gotten that hernia at Fisher's for all you know.

Anyhow, the court finds you in contempt of court for violating this support--violating the judgment of divorce, wherein support was made for five small children at ten dollars per week [per child]. And that isn't even enough. The court finds nothing wrong with you, hernia or no hernia. There are many men who work with hernias; they are physically and mentally able. If you are capable of remarrying, you are capable then of supporting your children. You are to be confined to the county jail for one year unless you come up with half, at least five thousand dollars, and a wage assignment of at least the current fifty dollars, plus twenty-five dollars on the back.

Let him make two or three telephone calls and see if he can get somebody to take him out.

Mr. Neal was sentenced to a year in prison, but got two months off for good behavior.

If Mr. Neal had been more articulate he might have replied to the Court's invitation to speak in his own behalf as follows:

You say that you are imprisoning me for contempt of court. You are lying. You are imprisoning me for debt, in violation of the law which you have sworn to uphold. You are denying me my right to be tried by a jury of my peers, divorced males, in violation of Article III, section 2 of the Bill of Rights, which you have sworn to uphold.

You tell me that I have no business marrying a second wife. If you know anything about the statistics of sociology, or if you have read George Gilder's Men and Marriage, you would know that married men earn nearly twice as much as single men. If you are concerned, as you affect to be, that I earn as much as possible, you would encourage me to remarry.

You tell me that you care nothing for the welfare of my second wife, and I believe you; but if I failed to support her, you would be tantruming at me for the welfare costs she would require of the State of Michigan, and telling me that you cared nothing for my first wife, and that since she is not my wife I am not responsible for her, which is true.

You say I have no business assuming responsibility for a second wife. I say to you, you have no business assuming responsibility for my children, and that in taking that responsibility upon yourself and placing them in a fatherless home in the custody of a woman incapable of providing for them, you are responsible for their poverty. By placing them in a female-headed home you are placing them where their likelihood of becoming delinquents is several times greater than if they were in a father-headed home. You destroyed my family, and you are trying to shift your responsibility for destroying it onto me by blaming me for the law's incompetence to protect my children and for the fact that I am unable to support two households with an income sufficient only for one.

You say that my children didn't ask to be brought into the world. I say to you that they didn't ask to be taken from a two-parent family where they were decently provided for by me and placed by you in a one-parent family where they are impoverished and at greater risk of delinquency and educational failure.

You ask me why I haven't held a steady job. You want to know what my trouble is. My trouble is that you have destroyed my family--destroyed the system of motivation which formerly made me a productive, stable and useful member of society--and are now about to make me a jailbird who can contribute nothing to society. My trouble is the same trouble as that of tens of millions of other American males--that you and the other members of your profession are, by destroying half of America's families, destroying the basis of patriarchal civilization. My trouble is that you and your fellow judges imagine that by raging and tantruming at males like myself you can compensate for the damage you are inflicting upon society by your own weakness of character, your own lawlessness in refusing to keep your oath of office and administer justice impartially, and your lack of cognitive skill.

You say you aren't going to let my children rummage in garbage cans. It is because you placed them in a female- headed home that they are rummaging in garbage cans. They never rummaged in garbage cans when they were in my custody.

You may imagine that your demonstration of indignation is benefiting the State of Michigan. It will cost the State between $20,000 and $25,000 to imprison me for a year. During that time my ex-wife and my children will be entirely on public welfare. During that time I will earn nothing and will therefore be withdrawing another $25,000 worth of productivity from the Michigan economy. My future employability will be impaired once I have a jail record. I will be paying no taxes for the next year and reduced taxes in the future--perhaps none at all, since I may find myself driven into the underground economy, or compelled to leave the state in order to escape your bullying.

Your concern is not, as you pretend, for the best interests of my children. You never lost thirty seconds of sleep over my children or any of the other children you placed in fatherless households where they are far more likely to be impoverished and delinquent. Your concern is to practice cheap judicial chivalry at my expense and to preserve a mindless legal rule-of-thumb which will save you the necessity of performing the duty for which you receive your salary, the duty of administering impartial justice and of thinking about what you routinely do when you destroy families and place children in their mothers' custody.

In the Mahabharata, the ancient epic of India, the character Pandy says, "Women were not formerly immured in houses and dependent upon husbands and relatives. They used to go about freely, enjoying themselves as best they pleased....They did not then adhere to their husbands faithfully; and yet, O beauteous one, they were not regarded as sinful, for that was the sanctioned usage of the times....The present practice of women being confined to one husband for life hath been established but lately." In the early l9th century, a traveller named De Roquefeuil visited the Marquesas Islands and reported that nearly every woman there had at least two husbands.

In the 24th century B. C., when civilization was a recent human achievement, an edict of King Urukagina of Lagash declared that, "Women of former times each married two men, but women of today have been made to give up this crime." Made to give it up- -clearly the idea of monandry originated with males and was imposed on females.

Contrary to what Gilder imagines, there must be something congenial to female nature in the state of promiscuity which existed in India in the age of the Pandavas, in the Marquesas Islands in the 19th century, in Lagash before the time of King Urukagina. What else is to be inferred from the fact that the most strident and frequently repeated demand of feminists is for "a woman's right to control her own body"--to abolish the Legitimacy Principle and re-establish the Promiscuity Principle?

"The right of women to full sexual equality with men," says Ms. Friedan, "and to the dignity and privacy of their own person must be secured by federal statute recognizing the right of every woman to control her own reproductive life." That means a federal law legitimizing fornication for unmarried women and adultery for married women, a federal law denying to men any rights under the marriage contract.

"Only economic independence can free a woman to marry for love," says Ms. Friedan. Men's money may be a "love-spoiler," but women's own money is romance itself--and isn't necessarily connected with marriage at all. She explains:

"Marriage as an institution is doomed" is the feeling of many women in the movement for whom the essence of women's liberation sometimes seems to be liberation from marriage.



  "There's no real economic base for marriage any more," says a learned friend of mine. "When women needed a man for economic support, and men needed women economically to run a home, when they needed to have children to secure their old age, marriage was real then and sex outside of marriage was not sanctioned. There's no real basis for that now. That's why marriages now are breaking up as soon as the children get old enough or even before." She illustrates from the experience of a liberated friend:

She is currently involved with two married men in two different cities. Over the last week she has seen both, spent two intense days with one, several with the other, but does not quite know when she'll see either one again. This has been going on for several years. Neither has any interest in leaving his wife, nor would she really want to marry either one of them. Other than the fact that neither is available on weekends, Sundays or holidays, or for long vacations or dinner every night--her relationship with both is quite perfect. Marvelously intense conversation, sex, emotion, dinners, letters--more intense surely than if they were together every day. She is not at all jealous of their wives.

"What could be better?" asks her married friend. "You can enjoy all that, the closeness, the emotion, the sex, the fun and games--and you don't ever have to do the laundry, so to speak, or stop doing your thing to make his dinner. You live your own life. You only have yourself to think about. How I envy you!"

Just like Romeo and Juliet. No money worries. No love- spoiling (male) money to interfere with the fun and games by bribing and buying up women as though they were property. The woman has her own money (or her husband's) and can use it to enjoy her sacred right to promiscuity, a right which ought to be guaranteed by federal law. This is the reality behind what Gilder perceives as women's long-term sexual horizons, horizons which, however, become long-term chiefly when contaminated by economic considerations.

The females in primitive societies and in the women's liberation movement covet a promiscuity which would deny to males a secure family role. By contrast, patriarchally socialized females in civilized societies accept the Sexual Constitution (or did until recently), and their chastity and loyalty to their husbands enable these husbands to be heads of families, a headship motivating the stable and productive male behavior which Gilder takes to be the primary difference between civilization and savagery. Both male and female behavior differ, but the difference in female behavior, consequent upon its regulation by the patriarchal sexual constitution, is the more fundamental.

Writing of the "creation of patriarchy" in the second millennium B. C., Dr. Gerda Lerner says:

The class position of women became consolidated and actualized through their sexual relationships....[Different groups of women] shared the unfreedom of being sexually and reproductively controlled by men....Class for men was and is based on their relationship to the means of production: those who owned the means of production could dominate those who did not.

It has to be that way for patriarchy to work. Male status is based on work and the creation of wealth, motivated by the male's role as head of the family. For this system to exist it is necessary that society should do what Dr. Lerner complains of its doing--consolidate the "class position" (status) of women through their sexual relationships:

It is through the man that women have access to or are denied access to the means of production and to resources. It is through their sexual behavior that they gain access to class. "Respectable women" gain access to class through their fathers and husbands, but breaking the sexual rules can at once declass them.

The threat of being de-classed is essential to the system, which would be destroyed by the acceptance of the Promiscuity Principle. Accordingly, the acceptance of the Promiscuity Principle is the major thrust of feminism: "Our liberation process consists in large part in gaining control over our own bodies, which are our own selves, our own lives." According to Helen Diner, "A free disposition over one's own person is an original right in a matriarchal society" --and women want the right restored. Lesbian feminist Susan Cavin insists that "patriarchy must control female sexuality, or else patriarchy cannot exist....The creation and maintenance of patriarchy or any other form of male-ruled society is based on the control of female sexuality."

To recapitulate. Patriarchal civilization is made possible by the regulation of female sexuality on the basis of the Sexual Constitution. Given freedom, females do not use their influence to impose this Sexual Constitution on males but to escape from it, to wreck the hated patriarchal system, as they have done in the ghettos. Surely it is significant that in the vast feminist literature dealing with the economic miseries of single mothers and their children, there is nowhere any suggestion to return to the Sexual Constitution and the patriarchal family--the only realistic means by which the economic problems of most single mothers can be solved. The entire thrust of this literature is to demand alternate methods of improving the standard of living of female- headed families without going back to the family and the Sexual Constitution which Gilder imagines them to be yearning for.

Chapter I
Chapter II
Chapter III
Chapter IV
Chapter V
Chapter VI
Chapter VII
Chapter VIII
Chapter IX
Chapter X
Chapter X
Annex to chapter I
Additional note
References

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