I was interested in a recent article in The Times by Alice Thomson (“We’ve only turned a page in the war on sexism”). I am sure that her views are sincere, but I must point out, however, that some of her assertions are in conflict with reality. One of the most important laws of human life is that one can do what one wants, as long as one is prepared to accept the consequences. But, if I understand Miss Thomson correctly, she is suggesting that women should be able to behave irresponsibly, without any painful consequences. This is contrary to human experience.
For example, she says that women should be able to wear what they like. Of course, they can wear what they like, but they cannot avoid the consequences of their attire. Since time immemorial, women (and men) have dressed to indicate their rank and their intentions. If a woman today deliberately dresses in a vulgar, sexy way, the only conclusion one can draw is that she wishes to attract men. There is no other reason for dressing like that. So she is either a tart, or a cock teaser. Suppose three women walk into a pub; one is conventionally dressed, the second is wearing a skirt up to her crotch, and the third is topless and wearing only a pair of pants. Do you think the men in the pub would have the same reaction to all three women? And would refrain from touching them?
Miss Thomson also mentions drink. Of course, women are free to drink if they wish to, but there are unpleasant consequences to drinking, not only for women, but also for men. Since time immemorial, young men often tried to get girls a little tipsy, to make them more amorous. Respectable girls resisted this, knowing that it could be dangerous. Today, women seem to feel they must drink in order to be like men. In previous generations, you rarely saw a woman drunk in public. Today you see many. By drinking, they are making themselves targets for men, which suggest that they are willing. Otherwise, why get drunk?
Miss Thomson alleges that “harassment” is a part of daily life for British girls. I would suggest, with respect, that she is being somewhat inconsistent. In the past, men were brought up to think that women were fragile little flowers, and that it was their duty to protect them, and look after them. But today, women are pretending that they are the same as men, and can do the same things as men. There is no longer any reason to protect them, or to look after them. If men and women are the same, how can there be “sexual harassment”? Men do not complain of sexual harassment – why should women? Is that logical? She also mentions that many girls send naked pictures of themselves to men. One cannot be “pressurised” to do that. You either choose to do it, or you do not. What opinion will young men have about girls who send them nude pictures of themselves? If girls do this, how can they complain about “sexual harassment”.
Finally, Miss Thomson mentions that women who work should not have guilty feelings about it. One’s feelings are, of course, a personal matter. But it is a fact that women who work spend very little time with their children, so it is natural for them to feel guilty. Women are always free to do what they like, but they must accept the consequences. They cannot have it both ways.