Article-10850379 image

Why I Am Not Raising My Daughters to be Feminists

A project created by photographers and partners Sham Hinchey and Marzia Messina called “Dear Daughters” was recently featured by HuffPost.
4 ½ min

HuffPost reported recently on a project created by photographers and partners Sham Hinchey and Marzia Messina called “Dear Daughters,” in which 22 men posed for artsy portraits with their daughters, ages eight to eleven, and chatted informally but a little awkwardly, with them about feminism. As you might expect from HuffPost, a half-hour video of the process depicts mostly “woke” grade-schoolers and hipster dads showing off their feminist consciousness for the camera without a trace of a diverse viewpoint.

In the video, fathers and daughters play a board game Hinchey and Messina invented to encourage discussion. The game featured such questions as, “What worries you about bringing up girls in a male chauvinist world?” and “Name a woman you admire” (almost all the girls named Hillary Clinton or Michelle Obama) and “Name all the stereotypes you can think of about boys and girls.”

“[C]hildren of this age start asking questions regarding social issues and it is interesting to watch them process news, trying to rationalize and decipher events which in their minds are absurd or unjust,” Messina told HuffPost. Yes, but a ten-year-old isn’t likely to have the wisest or most informed perspective on what is absurd or unjust—many adults don’t have it, for that matter. At that age, children are largely parroting what they have heard from parents and other adult influences such as teachers, particularly on complex political issues such as wages and the environment.

When one parent in the video tries to explain the concept of abortion to his daughter, for example, he glosses over the ugly reality of it and declares that what the issue boils down to is, “There’s a bunch of men in a room trying to tell women, ‘If you get pregnant, you have to have that baby.’” His daughter responds, “That’s messed up.” What’s messed up is the way he steered her toward the progressive lie instead of guiding her toward the truth.

Another father says to his daughter, “What if your brothers were doing the same chores but they were getting a dollar and you were getting seventy-five cents? Because that’s basically what’s happening in the country right now.” Actually, it’s not. The wage gap fallacy has been debunked over and over again, but you would never know that from this video (not a single father in it presents a viewpoint that opposes the left’s narrative).

So it appears that from an early age these daughters are being fed assumptions that women are valued unfairly in the American workplace, that they begin life at a disadvantage on a skewed playing field, and that men want to keep them down. Whereas that certainly was true in the past or even in some other cultures today, none of it is systemically true of the United States now, nor is it an empowering message for girls; on the contrary, it plants the seeds of a victim mentality.

“Male chauvinism and feminism are not abstract concepts,” Hinchey told HuffPost. “They are issues that are most likely already at their doorstep and will most certainly be a part of their daughter’s life in the future.” But male chauvinism and feminism need not be issues for our children if we raise them properly. If we raise our boys to be chivalrous and our girls to have some self-respect and to reject the anti-male resentment that feminism stokes and exploits, their interaction will be far more harmonious than the suspicious, bitter discord that marks the current state of the sexes.

I have three daughters, ages two through seven—all under the age range of the children in the “Dear Daughters” project. Nothing in the world is more important to me than their welfare and their future. I want them to be well-educated, independent, confident and strong—physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

But you don’t create strong women by indoctrinating girls, as today’s radical feminism does, to believe that they are victims of a sinister cultural force bent on enslaving them as in The Handmaid’s Tale, a feminist fantasy that has been hyped hysterically as a dire warning about the coming patriarchy in Donald Trump’s America.

As my daughters grow older, I will not teach them that as females they are oppressed, because in America, they are not. I will not teach them that they need to demand equal rights, because in America, they already have them. I will not teach them that abortion is about “my body, my choice,” because it is not. I will not teach them that they will earn less than an equally skilled man for the same work, because in America they do not. I will simply empower my girls by teaching them that they can become anything they want, because in America they can.

I will teach them not that this is a “male chauvinist world” or that all men are afflicted with “toxic masculinity,” but that there are good men and bad men, and how to tell the difference. I will teach them to defend themselves—with words, martial arts, and yes, with guns too—so that bad men will think twice about, or deeply regret, messing with them. I will teach them to find validation as productive members of society so that they don’t have to seek it by marching with a juvenile, vulgar mob in pussy hats.

I am not raising my dear daughters to be feminists, because I am not raising them to be the angry members of a Marxist victim class struggling to overcome imaginary oppression. I am raising them to be strong, responsible individuals in control of their own destiny.


This Acculturated article was republished with permission.

[Image Credit: Pixabay]

Add a Comment


Join the conversation...

You are currently using the BETA version of our article comments feature. You may notice some bugs in submission and user experience. Significant improvements are coming soon!


This author doesnt understand feminism. I would like to know whether his wife is allowed to drive, work outside the home if she chooses or have her own bank account. If so, he too is pro-feminism. The original feminists were pro-marriage, pro-family and pro-life. They were fighting for the vote because they had the responsibility for keeping their families alive while their husbands were gone at war, or incapacitated from alcoholism or workplace injury or abandoned them. Women needed living wages for their families' survival. We still do not have equal pay today and many women cannot survive on their salary alone leaving them to stay in relationships with bad men so their children have security. Women should not have to make these hard choices. You should raise your daughters in your own tradition but you would do them a service if you shared the examples of true feminists like Alice Paul and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Please learn the difference between true feminists and militant feminists. We should strive to raise our children within healthy marriages, but when your spouse is abusive, unfaithful or not God-fearing, women need the ability to provide for themselves and their children. The last thing they need is to be judged by people fortunate enough to be in healthy marriages.