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David Brooks wrote, in the Atlantic Monthly, about how “the revival of blatant sexism in American culture has many progressive thinkers flummoxed,” in his work “The Return of the Pig.”

He rails from a male-feminist perspective against rap music, Maxim magazine, and any other pop culture ox that he can gore. But, his thesis boils down to this:

It is as if millions of American men—many of them well educated—took a look at the lifestyle prescribed by modern feminism and decided, No thanks, we’d rather be pigs.


There are very persuasive arguments against materialism, pornography, institutional sexism, the commodification of the body, etc. I need not make all of them here, but I acknowledge that they exist and I acknowledge that I find many of them to be convincing.

I will note one example, Naomi Wolf makes a fabulous argument, reported on here. Essentially, she argues that over-sexualization of pop culture makes us have less fun in bed. You need not agree, but you can’t knock that logic. It is the same logic that you employ when you try to convince someone to do something bad…. c’mon, It’ll be FUN!

Unfortunately, Ms. Wolf is a rarity. Let’s get back to Mr. Brooks’ self conscious elitism.

The most interesting thing about the surge of retro-sexism is how unprepared feminists and other enlightened thinkers are to deal with it.

How do you react when people further down the social pecking order—whether they are disenfranchised whites or underclass urban minorities—are creating a culture you find degrading? How do you criticize that culture without seeming square, elitist, or even racist? No one has figured out the answers.

The fact is, he and his ilk are square, elitist, and racist. The problem is that Mr. Brooks refuses to acknowledge and even bask in his elitism. His point is that he knows better than you what is good for you.

And he might be right.

Maybe the world would be better if all men hyphenated their names after marriage, and if makeup were outlawed, and if nobody removed any body hair, and if every song had a banjo in it, and if everyone wore birkenstocks and ate baked goods that they bought from someone with an androgynous name at a freakin’ farmer’s market, and if everyone drove a Prius, and if we just lined up all the bad corporate rich people and shot them…

Oh wait, then most of the Brooks-ian thinkers wouldn’t have their trust funds that gave them the luxury of looking down on us dirty-handed proles in the first place.

I have lived in a post-feminist dystopia. I spent six years living in Northampton, Mass. That experience taught me what a liberal must feel like in Mississippi.

By all measures I would call myself left-wing. However, in Northampton, I was considered to be as right-wing as Rush Limbaugh … because I believed in the First Amendment. In that town, if you dare step outside the double yellow line of liberal orthodoxy, you’re likely to have a candlelight vigil (with plenty of whining) outside your house.

These elitist censors hate anyone who doesn’t fit into their world-view. Oh, they’ll play lip service by swooning at indigenous peoples’ art but trust me — it is all window dressing. When it comes down to it, these are the kind of people who would, given the chance, create re-education camps into which we would all be thrown for our thought-crimes.

No thanks, I’d rather be a pig.


Yes, the video is misogynistic on so many levels, but it is still way more fun than anything Joni Mitchell could put together.

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