By Elena Hooper
It’s no secret that the culture and society we live in is becoming steadily more progressive by the year. While the election in the past year has disheartened many and has taken us steps many back in terms of progressive government, the majority of progressives in this country still have not abandoned their progressive ideals. In many respects, it’s been for the better. Gay marriage is now legal. The number of educated young people is higher than it’s ever been (with even more women than men pursuing an undergrad). Career paths have been opened to both sexes that they were not able to pursue before, such as a female welder or a male nurse. Equal pay for both sexes, just to name a few. But within the past five years or so, with popular spearheads of the liberal movement like Anita Sarkeesian, Hillary Clinton, and celebrities such as Beyonce and Madonna, liberalism has taken a very self-centered turn and has become much more focused on the insecure needs of individuals who follow the movement and their desire to be accepted regardless of their shortcomings instead of fighting for political justice. Many who are part of the liberal movement have become much more focused on body image and identity, two things that are highly personal and have nothing to do with political progression. And because many who are part of this movement are overly concerned with their personal image and identity issues, it’s now seems to have become everyone else’s problem and is blamed, not on their own views of themselves, but mysterious outside forces whose existence is questionable.
But this progression has reached a point where it’s no longer leading us up a mountain to victory, but driving itself and anyone who associates with it off a steep cliff. I say this because I have a feeling that some who may have read the previous sentence before the last where I made a remark about the equal pay between men and women may have become frustrated, maybe even offended. “But that’s not true!” some may cry. “A woman makes 77 cents to a man’s dollar. Her salary is more than 20 percent lower than a man’s just because of her gender. How can you say we have equal pay?” While many people believe this statistic, it’s been proven many times to be a complete myth along with a few other widely regurgitated “facts”. Many liberals argue that women making 77 percent of men’s incomes on average is evidence of a sexist economy and therefore, a generally sexist western culture. However, this statistic does not take into account variables such as careers and degrees that women are more likely to pursue.
The gender pay gap myth has been debunked by numerous economic studies, a credible one being from the Foundation for Economic Education, and when the data is looked at more closely, it’s evident that there is a different story to be told. What the data actually represents is the median salary of women working full time divided by the median salary of men working full time. These numbers do not take into account occupation, education, or hours worked per week. When you consider these variables, you will find that the “gap” is largely influenced by choice. Women, on average, are more likely to pursue jobs and careers that are not particularly high earning like child care or public education while men are more likely to pursue high earning careers like careers in STEM. Women are also more likely to work part time and be less willing to work overtime when in a full time job. They are also not as likely to take big risks when it comes to career decisions and prefer stability. These are all choices women make about their careers, and even if it may be influenced by social expectations, they have almost nothing to do with the decisions made by employers and companies and certainly has nothing to do with what the liberal collective likes to call the “wretched patriarchy”.
Yes. The patriarchy, that boogeyman in the closet that liberals want everyone to fear so that their ideology will gain favor and thus more power in society. And while there’s nothing wrong with wanting your ideology heard, it’s completely different when you use your ideology as a force to control others with for your own ego stroking and validation. This is the case in many of the situations where such statistics are brought up. They are used to scare women and brainwash them into thinking that they’re more oppressed than they actually are, and those who believe that they are not oppressed to begin with are ostracized and verbally abused, sometimes even physically attacked. For example, popular political YouTuber Lauren Southern was covering a free speech rally and the University of Toronto for her channel. Southern is outspoken against fourth wave feminism and the radical left collective and an avid supporter of free speech. At this rally, she had numerous encounters with people on the radical left who shouted obscenities at her and would refuse to talk when she would question them about the event, until finally a man she was questioning (but I’m pretty sure the fellow went by some other sparkly gender identity) punched her directly in the face. All because she didn’t share the same radical opinion as them, even though Southern is not a conservative in the least. I don’t know about you, but I think type of behavior should at least raise some questions. But apparently, it’s done the opposite in many places in our country, especially on college campuses.
This very vocal group of people have single handedly dominated the conversation on identity politics and social issues on many of our country’s more progressive campuses. With each passing year, campus after campus has submitted to this vitriolic ideology in order to please its growing popularity. It’s taken over many classrooms where civil discourse was meant to educate, but now has many students putting their fingers in their ears not wanting to be offended. It’s even found its way into our own campus, unbeknownst to many of its students.
Have any who may be reading heard of the Women’s Center at CCM? I’m sure many were confused by that question as I was, too. It’s a curious situation, too. There’s been further investigation done by our Editor-in-Chief Brett Friedensohn on another article, and he’s uncovered some interesting information. It turns out that CCM’s Women’s Center is not even technically part of the school. The school allows them to use office space but is state funded and geared towards women in the community, not on the college campus. And even though the claim is that the department is open mostly for women in the outside community, the Women’s Center has its own page on the CCM website and calls itself “The Women’s Center at CCM,” as well as using grants from the state made out to the school, an annual one of approximately $130,000 to be exact. On top of that, the school gives them supplies and free HR support. When questioned about the exact reasoning behind this odd arrangement, Dr. Bette Simmons, vice president of student development and enrollment management, stated that one of the main purposes of having this arrangement is to make draw more people to the college. To make the college appear humanitarian, giving the college a specific image to draw in more revenue. It’s no coincidence that the desire for the college to have this image coincides with our current social and political climate. Many colleges have now adopted this image because they know it’s profitable. The demand for “equity” and ridiculous accommodations for all groups of people (some whose legitimacy is questionable, but that’s a discussion for another day) has many campuses in a death grip, “give us what we want or we’ll make you look bad.” This ideology has the power that it does because it’s become extremely popular, especially among young college-aged people, and while there are fewer people in this collective that will enact physical violence on others, there’s still an alarmingly large number of people who accept this ideology and dismiss the more extreme actions without question.
The behaviors of some of the subgroups within this collective border on a cult mentality, and it’s become incredibly dangerous to the safety of our free speech and our social discourse. “But wait!” they cry again. “Our ideas are trying to improve society. We’re trying to create a safe environment for people of all races, sexualities, and genders to live in. We’re trying to protect the marginalized against those who oppress them, like the alt-right. How can you say that our ideas threaten free speech?” While those efforts are admirable and liberal ideas have improved society in the past, thought policing is still thought policing. Censorship is still censorship. Propaganda is still propaganda. And it happens on both radical sides of the political spectrum. No matter what the ideology is, these actions are used when the party in question wants to exercise control over people’s actions and thoughts, silence opposing ideas, and keep those who follow ignorant by feeding them false information about the world around them. This is all done when the organization wants to gain power for personal gain, often monetary and/or social.
Neither radical side wants to admit to this since both will always claim that they “just want to make the world a better place” (yes, even Neo-Nazis are technically trying to make the world a better place), but really the majority of their beliefs are centered around self-interest, egotistical gratification, and insecurity. They fear the majority of what the world has to offer, so they feel much safer in their confined little bubble with people who parrot each other’s ideas. Many of these people just want to feel important and accepted in some group and can often get addicted to the power it gives them. Yes, the radical left and the alt-right have two very different ideas in mind for what they want for the world, but upon closer inspection, it becomes clear that they are both rotten to the core.
Now I do want to make one thing clear: I am by no means a conservative, or even a centrist for that matter. I’m actually quite a left-leaning person, most likely a progressive, but I can still see things wrong with how people on the left treat others. It’s just as wrong as if a conservative person did the same thing. It’s not about what your goal is; it’s about why you’re pursuing it, and it’s about time those on the radical left were exposed for their selfish and trivial interests since there’s been plenty of exposing done to right wing. Maybe they’re not the only problem.