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When Did American Feminists Stop Beating Muslim Women?

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"When Did American Feminists Stop Beating Muslim Women?"

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Also via New Republic editor in chief Martin Peretz, a recommendation that I read a “powerful critique” that “should be embarrassing to true feminists.” It’s by Christina Hoff Sommers in The Weekly Standard. The headline is “The Subjection of Islamic Women” but, obviously, neither Sommers nor the Standard nor Peretz actually cares about Islamic women. Rather, the subhead — ” And the fecklessness of American feminism” — captures the point she’s trying to make:

If you go to the websites of major women’s groups, such as the National Organization for Women, the Ms. Foundation for Women, and the National Council for Research on Women, or to women’s centers at our major colleges and universities, you’ll find them caught up with entirely other issues, seldom mentioning women in Islam.

Ah, yes. Certainly no U.S. feminist groups have set up a Help Afghan Women site or anything of that nature. And, of course, American feminist leaders have famously failed to call on American women to “Stand With Our Sisters in Iran”. Back in the real world, American feminists ignore the poor state of women’s rights in Muslim countries in much the same way that Western human rights groups ignore North Korea — only in the imagination of bad-faith conservative critics.

The Republican Party, meanwhile, most often takes note of women’s severely subordinate status in many Muslim countries when Republican presidents are hoping to collaborate with Islamist governments in order to block women’s rights treaties.

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