Opinion

NYT Lauds Feminist Advances Under Mao

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Will Ricciardella Social Media Strategist and Politics Writer

The New York Times published an opinion piece Tuesday outlining the advancements women made under the Communist leadership of Mao Zedong, the world’s most prolific mass murderer of the 20th century.

“[T]he Communists rescued peasant daughters from urban brothels and ushered cloistered wives into factories,” writes Helen Gao in The New York Times’ opinion pages. Women were liberated “from the oppression of Confucian patriarchy and imperialist threat” according to Gao.

To be fair, Gao acknowledges a lot of the failures of communism as well: lack of decent working conditions, lower pay, and a lack of career advancement. Essentially, women were afforded the same problems and levels of misery that afflicted men. At one point, Gao oddly remarks that although women were acquiring jobs, they were still afflicted with the “burden of child care.” I’d be curious to know how many mothers would consider that a burden.

Gao’s primary focus was on how the communist revolution provided “more job opportunities” for women. Mao’s propagandists not only tried to enlist women in the workplace, but also help shape their “self-perception” by depicting them “as men’s equal in outlook.” Women in Mao’s nascent revolution rose upwards “from mistreated wives and daughters to independent, socialist workers.”

There is some truth what Gao is saying, only for those that survived Mao’s reign of course.

“Can you name the greatest mass murderer of the 20th century” writes historian Lee Edwards for The Washington Times. “No, it wasn’t Hitler or Stalin. It was Mao Zedong.”

Mao was responsible for a total of 65 million deaths during his tenure as a self-appointed chairman of the Central Politburo. That’s roughly the population of France in 2017, just to give you some perspective.

Jobs were certainly plentiful in China, as Mao was ever expanding his “system of 1,000 forced labor camps throughout China,” according to Edwards. Women weren’t ushered into the workforce, they were forced into it, or else.

To claim that women made advances under communism, is a lot like claiming the contemporary leadership in Venezuela alleviated obesity. Gao is trading out one set of problems for an entirely new set of problems meant to highlight attributes of socialism that some may find attractive while tossing aside the most severe.

This follows of pattern of soft contemporary communist apologism at The Times.

“Eastern bloc women enjoyed many rights and privileges unknown in liberal democracies at the time,” wrote Kristen Ghodsee for The New York Times on August 12 in an opinion piece title “Why Women Have better Sex Under Socialism.” She noted the “increased opportunity” and incorporation into the labor force. And of course, Women under communism “enjoyed more sexual pleasure.” It seems odd that the Communists would would need a wall to keep all those lucky ladies from leaving.

The ideology of communism is responsible for the nearly 100 million deaths in the 20th century alone according to the authoritative “Black Book of Communism.”

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