Jennifer Dziura writes life coaching advice weekly here on TheGloss, and career coaching advice Fridays on TheGrindstone.
How much of modern-day America do women really control? Can you make a career out of only interacting with other women? (I’m not saying you should, but is that now possible?) Is an all-women MBA a good idea? What can we learn from Sara Blakely’s new billionaire status?
But first: The Reformation! And let’s explain the title of this piece.
In 1558, Protestant reformer John Knox published a tract entitled The First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women.
He was opposed to the Catholic queens of Scotland and England, as well as, by the way, all women.
“For their sight in civil regiment is but blindness; their strength, weakness; their counsel, foolishness; and judgment, frenzy, if it be rightly considered.” (Full text here.)
Following The First Blast of the Trumpet Against the Monstrous Regiment of Women (it’s kind of fun to keep cutting and pasting the full title, which is really, in keeping with the times, The First Blast of the Trvmpet Against the Monstrvovs Regiment of Women), Queen Elizabeth I came to power, and despite the fact that she was also Protestant, she was really not that into John Knox, for some crazy reason. (Bitches are frenzied! Or, in the parlance of 1558, phrenesied.)
The Monstrous Regiment of Women is now the title of a hilariously reactionary Christian DVD. Quoth one Amazon commenter: “The practice of submissive women telling other women how happy they are in their subordinate state is as old as dirt.”
Considering all the Palins and Bachmanns (and Coulters and Ingrahams) popping up everywhere – that is, there are female politicians for every political bent – men who have problems with women as “civil magistrates” have … problems. See below: “Emily’s Lust!”
You know the Westboro Baptist Church? The awful one that pickets funerals and that basically nobody at all supports? I don’t want to link to it, but I’ll tell you – in the 1990s, the Internet was still a baby, and you didn’t just assume that everything had a website. So, when you discovered that something crazy had its own website, it was like digging up an old Roman coin in your backyard or something.
So, when I discovered that the Westboro Baptist Church had a website, and that they were scanning in their daily, hand-drawn fliers and posting them as PDFs, I was fascinated. And then I found one portraying the then-mayor of Topeka as the whore of Babylon, and I laughed so, so hard, and emailed it to everyone I knew, and I felt like this magical flier was the misogynistic equivalent of someone who is spouting homophobic hate speech while, literally, rocking his penis in and out of the mouth of his masseuse, Julio.
This morning, I woke up wondering if I could find this flier.