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Social conservatives’ enduring myth: Women just want to stay home

During a HuffPost Live segment last week titled “Masculinity Now,” Vice co-founder Gavin McInnes aired a series of expletive-laden perspectives on modern femininity, none of them positive. While McInnes’ host and co-panelists maintained their calm, the blogger and publisher ranted that “feminism has made women less happy,” citing cultural pressure to “feign” toughness and inappropriate presence in the workforce as culprits.

In short, McInnes’ claim is that the majority of women are naturally predisposed to derive satisfaction from “being domestic and shaping lives” rather than from labor market work. McInnes’ intuition is essentially a condensed and profanity-laced version of a common conservative sentiment. The issue was last raised on the national stage when Hilary Rosen made the fateful mistake of suggesting that Ann Romney, the wife of then presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, had never worked. Romney retorted by quoting her husband to Fox News: “Mitt said to me more times than you would imagine, 'Ann, your job is more important than mine … your job is a forever job that is going to bring forever happiness.’”

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