Op-ed column: The other "V-Day: Hijacking Valentine's Day
With Valentine’s Day comes the other “V-Day.” The latest gimmick of those in the domestic violence industry, as many fathers’ rights activists put it, is to appropriate wholesome holidays about good things that make us feel joy and turn them into diatribes against men. V-Day takes place on the real V-Day, Valentine’s Day.
V-Day, now in its 11th year, is the brainchild of politically correct playwright Eve Ensler, author of the play “The Vagina Monologues.” The play is a series of monologue skits about women discussing their private parts in such graphic detail it could cause the raunchiest comedians to blush. This year, men, surprise her with flowers, a card, a nice dinner and tickets to a play (as Christina Hoff Sommers put it best) that is “poisonously anti-male.”
Artist and sexologist Betty Dodson stated: “That’s the main problem with V-Day. Women end up celebrating sexual violence and not the creative or regenerative pleasures of erotic love.” “The Vagina Monologues” just played at Union College starting Thursday and ending yesterday.
To domestic violence advocates, who see the entire canopy of the male/female experience as the subjugation of the former against the latter, hijacking holidays dedicated to love or motherhood is a natural manifestation of their mindset. To them, domestic violence is not something that sometimes raises its ugly head in relationships, it is something that nearly always raises its ugly head. They are the proverbial fanatics who will not change their minds and will not change the subject in otherwise general discussions of divorce or child custody.
“The Vagina Monologues” is laced with endless references to a woman’s anatomy to such an over-the-top extent that it lends itself too easily to parody; humorous ones can be found on the Internet, including one by Mad TV where ex-president's wives read from the play’s manuscript with its legions of references to a woman’s private parts. There is no doubting that the play has a certain puerile humor, much like an impish elementary school child who finds unceasingly repeating swear words to be the acme of all that is belly-aching humor.
In Vagina Monologues, the victims of domestic violence are all women, and V-Day is only used to finance domestic violence against women. It is the cause, “the fight against the patriarchy,” complete with Jane Fonda et al.
Male victims of domestic violence are not only of no concern, they are invisible. It doesn’t fit into all that victimized earth goddess granola stuff.
While a law student at George Washington University, I was part of the Project for Older Prisoners: my client was a woman who had doused her husband with gasoline and set him on fire when he was asleep after she caught him cheating. As a fathers’ rights activist, I have been inundated with so many e-mails with news clippings about women on male/women on child violence that I have stopped reading them.
Vagina Monologues ignores the fact that domestic violence is not always perpetrated by men against women. The reader may go to BerkshireFatherhood.com and put Martin S. Fiebert’s name in the search engine to get a list of 246 scholarly investigations, 187 empirical studies and 59 reviews and/or analyses which demonstrate that women are as physically aggressive, or more aggressive, than men in their relationships with their spouses or male partners. Dr. Fiebert, who works at the Department of Psychology California State University at Long Beach, last updated his bibliography in September of 2008. For some reason, I don’t think Fiebert’s name gets tossed around in a lot of college women’s studies courses.
As it attacks the patriarchy, Vagina Monologues is not afraid to challenge convention. In one monologue, an adult woman fondly reminisces about being a 13-year girl who was sexually molested by an adult lesbian, and describes the experience as a “good rape.” You will have to consult a professor of feminst studies to fully understand the whole “good rape/bad rape” thing, and I am afraid to admit I cannot provide you with further edification. And while you are at it, could you ask them why a group of people who are supposedly opposed to viewing women as a bunch of body parts champion a play that does just that.
Somewhere this Valentine’s Day, men and women will celebrate their mutual deep desire for each other, the tenderness of the heart, erotic passion, and the magical workings of that mystery called love that unites man with woman. But not if the purveyors of V-Day have anything to do with it.
The writer lives in Pittsfield, Mass.