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Book Review

Mugged By Biology

Enemies of Eros, by Maggie Gallagher

Bonus Books, 1989
Reviewed by James Sauer

Battle lines are being drawn in Evangelicalism on the "Women's issue." Last year the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood put out the "Danvers Statement"-- a manifesto of Traditionalist and Conservative doctrine on the roles of the sexes. This year's entry from the progressivist Social Evangelicals comes from Christians for Biblical Equality -- and offers an equalitarian view of the Scripture. While the inerrancy controversy took place in our seminaries and pulpits, feminism hits us exactly where we live: in the pocketbook, in the nursery, and in the bedroom.

Though feminism is on the ascendance among the Evangelical power groups, theological progressives seem oblivious to the raging battle taking place in the culture at large. While feminism is the official creed of the Humanist elites, a significant group of authors and scholars are breaking with the New Feminist World Order. These Neo-Conservative writers -- Gilder in Men and Marriage; Michael Levin in Feminism and Freedom; Brian Mitchell in Weak Link; and now Maggie Gallagher in Enemies of Eros -- have been battling the Amazons of the Androgynous State with naturalistic, empirical data.

The message is simple; Men and women are not the same. Women have babies; men don't. Gallagher makes it clear: "None of the very real problems facing women today, from finding ways to combine fruitful work with a nurturing family life, to rescuing women from the economic disaster of divorce, can be resolved without abandoning the failed doctrine of sexual androgyny." But it is just that doctrine that cannot be abandoned without a full admission of feminist bankruptcy.

The feminist mission, therefore, is to make war on biology -- and to do it they must make war on traditional women. As Miss Gallagher says: "The lie of androgyny was invented, as it were, to give a rationale for reshaping our social institutions so that women could not safely choose family over career." And family cannot be safely chosen. In its place we are forming a gender-free Collectivist society supported by daycare centers, birth control clinics, abortion mills, career workshops, porn shops, singles bars, and divorce ceremonies. To oppose the Way Things Are is to risk social stigma and financial ruin. To submit to the Unisex Order is to risk the judgment of God.

The effects of the Androgynous Experiment have never been more stark. With every new social demographic survey, we wonder if things can get much worse for family life in America. Gallagher summarizes the dissolution:

And all the while women are getting poorer, as the fabric of our family life which restrains the untutored aggression of men and binds them to us unravels. Our children are fewer in number, too few now even to replace the population. Those that remain are more often battered, beaten, neglected, isolated, sexually-used, or simply ignored. More girls, seeking love, end up pregnant and abandoned. More boys (seeking gender) end up as thugs and beasts, or as accident and suicide statistics. Brutalized by divorce and paternal abandonment, children long for stable family life, for erotic attachment, but are unable to achieve it. The cycle repeats, spiralling progressively downward, all because of our determined ignorance of a few basic facts of life.

Meanwhile, the social Evangelical Churchocrats, ignorant of the basic facts of life, trundle out the Feminist blather and project a vision of egalitarian marriage, church life, and society. Ignoring the biological needs of our humanity; they begin with abstractions, perversely twisting Scripture in the fundamental areas of family and church polity. Clearly, when Paul said that women should not hold authority over men in the Church -- he meant something by it. When Paul told wives to submit to their husbands -- he meant submit, and not lead. Maybe, and just maybe, God understood our male and female psychologies better than Phil Donahue.

As for arguments in marriage, the Christians for Biblical Equality believe such tiffs are to be resolved like good middle-class professionals by seeking "resolution through biblical methods of conflict resolution rather than one spouse imposing a decision on the other." Well, it works great on paper.

This so-called Biblical Feminism is all very nice for highly educated, well paid women of the Evangelical Elite; unfortunately, it results in bitterness, poverty, sterility, abuse, loneliness, and divorce for their less privileged sisters. They must pay, and pay bitterly, for making war on their biology.

Maggie Gallahger, and millions of other women, have been mugged by reality. Perhaps if Christians will not listen to the Bible, the Word of God Almighty Himself, they might at least believe in reality when it slaps them in the face. Maggie Gallagher has.

Copyright © by Covenant Community Church of Orange County 1990
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