GOVERNMENT AS SUBSTITUTE. HUSBAND
When only one lex wins, both sexes lose.
When a woman committed a crime in the United States in the 1800s, it was her husband who served time 1 Similarly, under Knglish law, when a family went into debt, it was the husband who went to debtor’s prison. When it comes to male-female issues, men’s unconscious lawmaking was programmed to protea women Laws were almost always made by men, but not for men
The discoveries of this chapter are that in an era of alleged female independence, one law after another came to be made with such attention to proteaing women that if a man’s constitutional rights conflia with а woman’s protection, most of his rights disintegrate before most of her proteaion disintegrates.
That is what is happening legally But what is happening legally almost always reflects what is happening on a deeper level psychologically. We will see that when divorces left women without husband-as-savior, many women looked for substitute saviors; and when divorces left men without a source of love, men competed to obtain women’s love by finding new ways of saving women.
The search for saviors and the competition to save appeared in various garbs. New Age women went from father to husband to guru; men competed to be their guru. Traditional women went from father to husband to "God the Father", men competed to be their "fathers" (priests, ministers, and rabbis). Feminist women went from father to husband to options: the option to save themselves or to turn to the biggest savior of all – government as substitute husband, men competed to turn the government into a substitute husband.
Divorces led to bodies of men (called legislatures) proteaing women colleaively as other men (called husbands) failed to protea women individually. This meant raising taxes mostly on other men to provide money mostly for women. When divorces deprive women of husbands to protea them, then, our colleaive unconscious still wants to protea women.
And women’s colleaive unconscious still wants the protection. For example, a San Diego police officer is now serving a fifty-six-year sentence
for raping women on local beaches, his wife is suing ihe police department for the income that he cannot now provide her. . . she expects the government to be her substitute husband. She is also suing the department for having hired him to begin with. . . she expects the government to be a better judge of her husband’s character than she was able to be.2 The more things change.
Do these man made laws reflea male values? In pan Pan of men’s values is to protea women even more than themselves Are these laws made in men’s self-interest? Son of. Men who want female love learn to look out for women s interests more than their own.
Doesn’t the faa that almost all legislators are men prove that men are in charge and can choose when to and when not to look out for women’s interests? Theoretically, yes. But praaically speaking, the American legal system cannot be separated from the voter. And in the 1992 presidential eleaion, 54 percent of the voters were female, 46 percent male.3 (Women’s votes outnumber men’s by more than 7 million.)
Overall, a legislator is to the voter what a chauffeur is to the employer – both look like they’re in charge but both can be fired if they don’t go where they’re told. When legislators do not appear to be proteaing women, it is almost always because women differ on what constitutes proteaion. (For example, women voted almost equally for Republicans and Democrats during the combination of the four presidential eleaioas prior to Clinton.)
We will see how the legal bias for special proteaion for women has begun to wreak havoc with the Constitution’s guarantee of equal proteaion. How the 1980s, for example, witnessed two definitions of self-defense: one for men and one for women; and two definitions of first-degree murder – depending on your sex. We will see how, by the 90s, there were twelve defenses that were potentially available for a woman who killed but not for a man who killed. How, at many colleges, a woman could have a man kicked out of school for date rape – even after she had chosen to drink and chosen to say "yes" while drinking.
These chapters will give us a view of why sexual harassment and date rape legislation are now occurring; the dilemmas they will create for business, government, the law, and ultimately women themselves in the twenty-first century; and the steps we can take before we paint ourselves into a comer.
We will look at how the original feminist stance against legal discrimination based on biological differences has changed to one of favoring the use of biological differences if they expand women’s rights – such as the right both to bear a child despite the father’s objeaion and then to sue the father for eighteen years of support.
We will look at the dilemma for employers of granting women special rights while being required to treat women with equal respea. For
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example, feminist support for a pregnant woman’s special rights to disability pay soon made pregnancy the only workplace "disability" that did not occur in the workplace, and the only disability that the employee purposely created.
These "protea women" laws have already been put into place In what has been, perhaps, the quietest legal revolution in history. In 1970, feminist legal scholarship was virtually unheard of. Today, most of the books and articles in a recent seventy-one page bibliography on women and legal scholarship are written by feminist legal scholars.4 No scholar of prominence has criticized feminism in the law journals. When asked why, Yale Law School professor Geoffrey Hazard explained that in the "politically correa" atmosphere of the universities, any dissent would leave a scholar labeled as anti-woman 5
But we still haven’tprot>en that the system does protea women Or that there really are two laws – a male law and a female law.