This is our truth, tell us yours
The petition to add the mothers names to birth certificates has already been well critiqued, by Carter here among others. Feminism that refuses to consider those who dont want to uphold patriarchal norms by going through a ceremony that was originally a transfer of goods and still remains at heart a property arrangement. Marriage was invented to ensure a woman had no moment of freedom between birth house and breeding house, the fathers name was on the certificate because only he mattered, he gave away his property to another man judged fit enough to continue the pattern of ownership and domination.
Enough history though, what of now, what of women who want this change. Well first we know that they do not belong to one parent families, they know who both their father and mother are, and want them acknowledged on their marriage certificate. They belong to the comfortable middle, where families consist of mummy, daddy and probably timmy the dog. Cameron says that only having the fathers name “doesn’t reflect modern Britain” but which Britain is reflected in adding the mothers name? The bisto family Britain? Of course the conservatives have a long history of attacking single parents, and any other family structures, a family to them is a reflection of the cis het norms that modern feminism also worships. What if a family has 2 fathers, or two mothers for example? Will a trans woman be allowed to be listed as a mother if they so want? What of non binary parents who do not identify as either father or mother?
The answer would have been to remove this unneeded information from the marriage certificate of course. Now genealogists would no doubt be howling as they use such information, but given that trans people in sweden were sterilized to keep the family trees nice and neat I dont have a lot of time for what is basically a hobby. The genealogists of the future will probably be interested in facebook far more than church registers and grave stones anyway. We use these certificates because there were few records, not because they are of themselves some wonderful form of record keeping.
It was the wonderful and much missed Red Light Voices who first pointed out how Helen Lewis had been brought into the New Statesman to replicate the Mail’s online sucess of clickbait articles and manufactured controversy. This is not just about style though, but the substantive beliefs of those leading mainstream feminism. How many of us have been told to “start our own campaign” or ” do something in the real world” disablist statements that also ignore the privileges of being white, cis and middle class. Its a straight line from Tebbit’s on your bike to CCPs “start your own campaign.” The denial of privilege is also straight from the daily mail book of comments. Pull yourself us by the bootstraps, hard work never hurt anyone, stop whining and be a good upstanding citizen. Unless of course your whining is about issues that affect you and yours personally, parking tickets and marriage certificates, speeding fines and feminist knickers.
That’s how the Daily Mail works, and how UK mainstream feminism works. Laugh at the other, at the idea of political correctness, at anything different to your experience. Center the world on that experience, everyone knows there are too many immigrants because your mates in the pub said so. Everyone knows that cis women are offended by the term cis, my mates in the organic coffee shop said so.
Just as the Daily Mail lacks love so it is with UK Mailite feminism. Love as St Paul wonderfully said;
4 Love is patient,
love is kind and is not jealous;
love does not brag and is not arrogant,
5 does not act unbecomingly;
it does not seek its own,
is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,
6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;
7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never fails;
This may seem an impossible ideal, and of course we all fail to demonstrate it at times, however it is at the heart of what for want of a better word I shall call the social justice movement. I am not trans, but the suffering of trans women is my suffering, I am not disabled, or a person of colour, or so many things that I see in the world suffering, but my love means I want to alleviate that suffering as best I can. Daily Mail Feminism, just like the Mail itself is based on the opposite of love, self interested, impatient, unkind, arrogant, self seeking and rejoicing in inequalities.
It is no wonder Cameron approves of this latest, irrelevant campaign by UK feminism, it reflects all that he, and they, hold dear.