The War on Wolf
Ever since Time magazine revealed that Al Gore has been paying feminist writer Naomi Wolf to consult at the tune of $15,000 a month, obsession with Wolf -- her politics, her looks, the content of her campaign advice -- has consumed all channels of the nation's political discourse. Why?Is it because Ms. Wolf is radical? She's gotten into hot water with her last book, "Promiscuities," for recommending that teenagers masturbate rather than have sex. Now, why is this considered radical or even controversial? I'm willing to bet $1,000 that if every parent in America were injected with truth serum, they would agree with Wolf's common sense approach to reducing teen pregnancy and the spread of disease. Wolf's "crime" has been to speak about sex in an honest way.Conservatives, who almost always take the improbable stance when it comes to sex, have long felt morally obligated to lie about their sexual attitudes (let alone their sexual behavior!) and to punish anyone who isn't willing to condemn any and all sex that isn't for the purpose of producing children within the confines of a marriage.What's galling about their reaction to Wolf and the mainstream media's focus on her Gore consultancy is that they have insisted Wolf is offering only "non-political" advice -- about Gore's clothes, his accessories and his psycho-sexual status. (Meredith Berkeman of the New York Post flatly asserts that Wolf picked out all of Gore's new clothes, even though Wolf denies so much as even commenting on a single tie.) Is it not probable that Gore hired Wolf because she has her pulse on American women's likes and dislikes -- and I'm talking beyond clothes?The only sure "bet" is that when there is an opportunity to smear a feminist or a liberal or a Gore consultant, then the Post and much of the mass media will run with it -- the facts be damned. Of course, it's important to get the facts straight if a biographer writes something critical on George Bush. But if the whole media establishment wants to create a Wolf caricature out ofthin air, well that's just good fun.What's the real reason for the war on Wolf? She is in serious violation of conservative theology. Psalm II:15 in the Conservative Bible clearly states, in the words of spokesman Rush Limbaugh, "Feminism is a club for ugly women who can't attract men or be a part of 'normal' society" (I'm not making this up folks, Rush has said this thousands of times).The problem with Wolf for conservatives? She's smart, beautiful and tough-talking. Her existence, for them, is the equivalent of bringing a globe to a Flat Earth Society meeting.Conservatives, who have always had a much better understanding of how the media works, correctly view Wolf as a horrible threat. If Wolf were on national TV more often, she would be a major force. If Wolf had a daily TV pulpit like a pre-candidate Pat Buchanan, every woman in America would call herself a feminist and the conservative movement would suffer accordingly.I've never met Wolf or talked to her in private; she may be a wretched monster. But I have seen her speak in public and she is a master on par with Bill Clinton. Her speaking manner is lively, charming, insightful, provocative and note-free. Gore should pay her twice her old $15,000-a-month salary if she can turn him into half the speaker she is.As a talking head on TV shows, Wolf is a star. Her Rhodes Scholar reasoning comes thorough in a way that is extremely likeable. The second some conservative attacks Wolf and other feminists for being "anti-male" or "abnormal," all Wolf has to do is smile and start talking; her opponents are instantly exposed as dithering fools and hypocrites.The mainstream political establishment also hates Wolf for being what they consider "normal" in so many ways. The conservative punditocracy loves the fact that Patricia Ireland, head of the National Organization for Women, has both a husband and a wife. They adore the fact that Gloria Steinem "has never caught a man or had kids." This makes these feminists "different" and easy to ridicule. The conservative movement has made a lot of hay over the fact that Molly Yard and Eleanor Smeal are considered by many to be physically unattractive.So it drives them crazy that Wolf can be happily married with one child and another on the way. It would be so much easier to ridicule her ideas if only she hated men. Instead she writes compelling books and advises the president on half the population.The Politically Correct War on Wolf will continue. After all, it's so much more fun to talk about than plane crashes, violent shootings or the fact that George Bush doesn't know the name of a single world leader.