Saturday, April 08, 2006

The second-best laugh this week

At first I thought that Bernard Goldberg's book, "100 People Who Are Screwing Up America (and Al Franken is #37)", was his attempt to write like a P. J. O'Rourke wannabe. I read a couple of his essays and just decided to return it to the library when I got around to it.

But today I read through the general essays at the beginning of his book and changed my mind about it. This is the start of the best of them in the chapter titled "Sex Warriors":
A few years ago, I was the keynote speaker at the annual meeting of the National Organization for Women in Washington, D.C. Every important feminist this side of Venus was there. I got a standing ovation as I walked to the podium, and my speech was interrupted too many times to count by enthusiastic applause.

I started out by saying, "I'm going to take this opportunity to speak truth to power." I pointed out that there was just too much anger coming from the entrenched feminist camp, too much hostility that often showed its ugly face in the form of male-bashing. I told them I thought Gloria Steinem's line about how "a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle" was juvenile, and that over the years, there had been too much of the same from feminist leaders. In conclusion, I told them to back off, to knock off the sexual-warrior crap, that men were not the enemy, and that their constant whining about being "victims" made them look not like strong women but like little schoolgirls.

Then, two incredible things happened: First, every woman in the room rose as one and gave me a roaring second standing ovation, which went on even longer than the first. Then my alarm clock went off.

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