Several other commentators have already taken up this extraordinary article, which at first glance seems too ridiculous to be real. Several have suggested that Cosmopolitan may have intended it as satire. Unfortunately, that turns out not to be the case.
As absurd as are author Hannah Smothers’ notions, it’s not quite enough to dismiss it as such. Miss Smothers is plainly aligned with the fringe of feminism that regards men as “the enemy:” evil straight from the womb. To such a woman, nothing a man ever does is innocent. Nothing a man brings to a woman may be viewed as beneficial to her without imposing a still greater burden or cost upon her. There can be no truce between the sexes, in such a view.
Given that, as Camille Paglia has said, had men somehow never existed women would still be living in caves, and given that that’s about as self-evident as the right to life, one must question the mental health of such a woman. But let’s stipulate, entirely for the sake of argument, that Miss Smothers is sufficiently competent to come in out of the rain without being dragged on a leash. What could motivate her to displeasure over a man’s satisfaction at providing his woman with the sexual fulfillment of an orgasm?
I propose: Envy.
Men are goal-focused and achievement-oriented. It’s integral to our natures. It’s normal for a man to take satisfaction from achieving a conscious aim -- any conscious aim, regardless of whether tangible benefits flow to him from having done it. He’ll seldom care overmuch what others think of it, or of him for pursuing it. Women, in contrast, are acceptance-focused and consensus-oriented. Women who will actively pursue achievement in preference to acceptance by their peers are a minority. Worse, women are aware that “the other lobsters in the bucket will pull her back down:” that an enterprise staffed by women allows no individual woman to rise beyond her peers’ reach.
Miss Smothers has apparently reached her “lobster limit,” and is aware at some level that she can aspire to no higher plane of achievement. If she’s infected with the contemporary “a woman can have it all, and if she doesn’t get it all, she’s being cheated” meme, which appears likely, that’s a source of great frustration to her: frustration sufficient to require that she lash out. But she can’t lash out at the other girls; that would be wrong! Besides, it’s men who are the real enemy. Somehow, men have contrived the barriers she faces. Never mind that men are essentially irrelevant to the composition and publication of trivia such as Cosmopolitan.
To such as Miss Smothers, for a man to take pleasure of any sort in having done something for a woman must be wrong. If the something is orgasm – the supposed fulfillment of a sex act well performed – the wrong is doubled. A woman’s pleasure is for herself alone! Can’t let any grubby man horn in on the satisfaction from it...even if it costs her nothing whatsoever and contributes to the pair bonding that makes marriages last.
(Might Miss Smothers’ envy be about lack of orgasms? Might she lack a man who’ll regularly give her orgasms? Unknown. Nor do I intend to research the matter.)
We have still other reasons to doubt Miss Smothers’s mental health. Quoth Stacy McCain:
The symptoms of Ms. Smothers’ insanity are obvious. After all, no psychologically healthy person would leave the great state of Texas and move to a tiny apartment in Brooklyn. Beyond that, however, Ms. Smothers exhibits a morbid obsession with killing babies. She is a bloodthirsty pro-abortion fanatic, for whom maintaining federal funding for Planned Parenthood is a sacred crusade. Advocates of infanticide are not nice people, and the feminist movement’s pro-abortion agenda attracts heartless monsters who consider baby-killing a “right.”
Hannah Smothers has the three crucial traits of a feminist — the craziness, the cruelty and don’t forget, the dishonesty.
A feminist must always engage in semantic games intended to conceal reality, to hide away evidence that she is the source of her own problems.
Envy, we are told, amounts to hatred of the good for being the good. If it is good that a man bring his woman pleasure, then to resent his satisfaction at having done so and to want to mar it constitutes envy of the first water. She who would act to prevent such occasions is acting to destroy something good – good for both partners! How much more could we ask? – with no gain to herself. She’s either mentally ill or consciously evil.
Much of the ranting of feminists can be explained in such a fashion.