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Being Married or Having Daughters Does Not Make You A Decent Person

If it did, women like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez would not be slurred by married men like Rep. Ted Yoho

“You can be a powerful man and accost women. You can have daughters and accost women, without remorse. You can be married and accost women. You can take photos, and project an image to the world of being a family man, and accost women, without remorse, and with a sense of impunity.”

The love a man has for the female members of his family, particularly his offspring, is presumed to have special power — to humanize the other half of the population, to allow him to imagine the world his daughter will inhabit. Sometimes, in fact, this happens. Other times, the Daughter Excuse comes across mostly as cynical ploy.

“[T]his wasn’t just about sexism and it wasn’t just about women. It is about singlism and matrimania and the many ways that many married people — both men and women — see themselves as superior just because they are married. It is also about the many people who agree with them, including, it pains me to say, even some people who are single. The supposed superiority of married people is an ideology, not just any old belief. It is a worldview; people are invested in it. ‘Get married, and you, too, will be superior,’ is an alluring lie.”

“No union is more profound than marriage for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice and family. In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than they once were. … Marriage responds to the universal fear that a lonely person might call out only to find no one there. It offers the hope of companionship and understanding and assurance that while both still live there will be someone to care for the other. … Their hope is not to be condemned to live in loneliness.”

Written by

Award-winning journalist, coauthor of “The New I Do: Reshaping Marriage for Skeptics, Realists and Rebels,” mom, changing the narrative about older women

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