Editor’s note: This satire, originally written in 1984, has not been published previously.
Here in the mid twenty-first century, as we stand on the brink of ultimate victory in the age-old struggle for fembeing rights, it is only fitting to review a few of the past developments that led to this point. I trust that readers will forgive my indelicacy in resorting to certain outmoded vulgarisms such as “woman” and “man” in the interest of historical flavor.
The brutal and pervasive sexism of the Roman Catholic Church is too well known to require description. But even that masculinist bastion was shaken when bishops, impatient with Vatican policy, publicly ordained women to the priesthood on their own authority. Naturally, their severest critics were religious women. With true prophetic distain for clerical pretentions, they declared that no act by a member of an oppressor class could impart or validate female celebrancy. Only lawyers profited from the resultant schisms and legal suits.
Later, a famous controversy erupted over women’s absolute right to use their bodies as their wished. The compassionate Sisters of the Newest Age announced that, after much prayerful reflection, they were opening a free brothel to provide warm, open, and caring sex for the poor, marginalized, and sexually disadvantaged. All requests by clients were promised non-judgmental attention because no desire should be stigmatized as “deviant.”
According to Sister Merry Malibu, “How can we know these people unless we know them?” Regrettably, Mafia harassment quickly drove the Holy House out of business before its daring apostolate could bear fruit.
By then, even timid prelates realized that formerly liberal policies, for example, indulgence towards pro-choice advocates, had become all too conventional. Anxious to reclaim progressive status, they redoubled efforts to purge the last vestiges of exclusive language from sacred texts, a campaign the Raddest Trads denounced as “the castration of Scripture.” But keen-eyed critics still detected vestiges of crypto-masculinist values lurking in such compositions as the new Supreme One’s Prayer.
Moreover, there was the distasteful matter of Christ’s sex. Unwilling to repudiate his problematic maleness completely, moderates urged compromise. Henceforth, the embarrassing corpus on the crucifix was to be replaced by a tastefully semi-nude androgyne.
Of course, these feeble concessions were doomed. Appeasement always fails. Dissident women founded the Church of the Sacred Womb to proclaim female redemption. (Bigoted wits called it the “Climax of the Miss-iah.”) Although its central Mystery was the menstrual cycle, this sect generously admitted feminine transsexuals to full communion, praising their “fervor of the converted. Bolder radicals flocked to the resolutely neuter Exaltationists who made themselves eunuchs for the Realm of Heaven or, at the other extreme, to the Children of Earth—the so-called “Dirties—whose joyous creed exhorted them to copulate early, often, and with everything.
The Absolutely Equal Rights Amendment outlawing all legal distinctions among people completed the transformation of marriage from sexist slavery to an institution that could accommodate any combination of individuals. Although pedophilic homosexual incest has remained a minority enthusiasm, the monogamous heterosexual has all but disappeared. Since then, we and our offspring have largely been spared the crippling effects of dual-parent households.
Except for the rare eccentric celebrities who beget and bear their own children, surrogate parenting has become the favorite reproductive strategy among the elite. They now bank ova and sperm for future in vitro conception followed by implantation in a rented uterus. This admirable system ought to have provided lucrative employment for low-income women. But most have unaccountably failed to seize the opportunity and thus sink ever deeper into poverty. Upbringing determines status. As countless studies have demonstrated, the impulsively procreated, home-reared child simply cannot compete with the professionally supervised product of the petri dish and the day-care center.
Absolute reproductive control remains the key to full liberation. Mandatory contraceptive implants at puberty free today’s adolescents for fearless sexual experimentation. Self-induced abortion is a routine precaution for the mature while free and unrestricted termination services provide a final safety net. Deliberately starting, then stopping a pregnancy for an aesthetic thrill remains fashionable in some advanced circles. Personal experience with abortion is now as indispensable for the aspiring politician as parenthood was. More than one female candidate’s dreams died when their past pregnancy terminations were unmasked as miscarriages.
Although our Supreme Court perversely continues to uphold a woman’s option to refuse an indicated abortion, those who ignore the findings of government mandated genetic counseling and pre-natal screening now forfeit all future claims to public assistance for a defective child.
Religious bodies, such as the Roman-loyalist remnant of the Catholic Church, who obdurately reject current enlightened practices must be made to feel society’s displeasure by appropriate legal action. To date, cancellation of tax exemptions and imposition of punitive fines have no sufficed to crush these retrograde elements.
This temporary setback is a sad symptom of larger failures. America, as well as the rest of the world, remains incorrigibly sexist. Masbeings will be men—and therefore oppressors—regardless of their protestations to the contrary. A rigidly phallus-free lifestyle has yet to be realized despite thoroughgoing historical revision, cultural modification, and social reconstruction as well as relentless imposition of femspeak.
Although cloning and genetically engineered hermaphroditism have never become practical realities, biotechnology is about to fulfill its promise. The recent discovery of two-ova fertilization and the development of a reliable artificial womb will eliminate the last necessity for tolerating males. (Already, thanks to the availability of certain sophisticated mechanisms, discriminating connoisseurs of orgasms no longer depend on the chancy potency of male partners for their pleasure.) Now that men will become obsolete as fathers as well as lovers, attrition will shortly render them extinct.
Although I am too old to see the final flowering of our glorious future, I salute it. Rejoice, femsiblings! The monosexual utopia is at hand!
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Satire has its place but reality has a much darker face.
Sign of the times.
The Frankenstein’s Wedding Event, Kirkstall Abbey, Leeds – 19th March, 2011.
This Live drama event produced by the BBC was the most amazing setting, especially lit up the way that it was and with the ‘larger-then-life’ full moon overhead.
Kirkstall Abbey is a ruined Cistercian monastery It was founded c.1152. It was disestablished during the Dissolution of the Monasteries under Henry VIII.
As Christians we speak of ourselves as the body of Christ but make no mistake there is another body (Frankenstein / Religion) and its body is made up of foul and diabolical parts. This body is held together by a ..V.. that transforms itself into a Circle of Worldly Power. All circles of worldly power rely on secrecy, this gives an advantage based on deception, and serves the Evil One. He cannot be beaten at his own game, the early Christians used signs and gesture, but these can be duplicated, then we have duplicity and confusion at play; for those on the outside, like myself, friend or foe you no longer know.
It was put to me many years ago, “it’s a bit like the game of tag, you pass the lurgy (British slang) to someone else” Conclusion you then become part of Group think (The herd/’body’). While also been told jovially “the new holder of the lurgy always has the option to get rid of his load (Worldly troubles) by passing it on.
The unseen innocent within the flock, have paid the price, as it could be said, self-protection is what the Church/leadership sort, dereliction is what it has bought.
To days leadership (Clergy) has failed miserably to live to what it preaches and exhorts. Many within the clergy have ‘good intent’ but all are immersed in institutional hypocrisy, as they have served its Image rather than God (Truth) first.
So we have institutionalized hypocrisy, as the leadership cannot face/show the reality of itself before it’s worldly Image (Clericalism), which has stifled spiritual growth, while ‘enslaving’ them to this worldly Image of perceived perfection.
The antidote to sin is humility as a humble heart is the only place from where the transforming action of Holy Spirit can be embraced. “This is the reality of grace.”
As St. Vincent de Paul put it centuries ago, “Humility is nothing but truth, and pride is nothing but lying.”
Our Lord Himself has given all men with ‘good intent’ the means to create a humble Church, by calling The Elite within the Church, to account, for their collusion with the on-going breaking of the Second Commandment
“Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain”
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kevin your brother
Those who do not know history, repeat it. Those that do know history, also know the future.
Suggested art history:
The Sexuality of Christ in Renaissance Art and in Modern Oblivion, 2nd Edition, by Leo Steinberg
Yes, I have Steinberg’s fascinating book. Before Trent, religious art depicted things it hasn’t presented since. Maria Gravida and Maria Lactans might shock the devout, too.
I am a bit embarrassed that I failed to foresee the transgender tsunami now flooding our society, even though I’d been around for “Christine” Jorgensen’s transition in the 50s.
Tracing my response to Juvenal, I find this genre nothing less than repugnant. Please do not take offense, Ms. Meisel, that I cannot value your writing, as skilled and imaginative as it is. The tale it tells repels.
The tale it tells is remarkably prescient. It’s an unfortunate fact that the modern assaults on sexuality, marriage, family, and authentic human freedom are disturbing, even demonic. In a sense, it’s very difficult to satirize such insanity. I think Sandra does a very good job, however, especially considering she wrote most of her essay some 35 years ago.
In other words, Meiron, you do not see the truth which has come to pass since Ms. Meisel’s satire was first penned 35 years ago. Ignoring the truth as it was so accurately portrayed in 1984 does you a disservice. It seems that you would rather bury your head in the sand rather than understand the very truth you call repugnant & do something to change it. Because if we bury our collective heads in the sand, & ignore what the current democrat fascists are pushing, we will surely end up, at some point in the future, with a monosexual society that really does not need men or women for anything. Be warned.
By the 1960s, there were already sci fi short stories and novelettes of this genre, and this essay reads with them, an Authur C Clark short story as worked over by AE Van Vogt, and Roger Zelazny.
Well done, although sadly it rings more true than satirical. We are in a very different world from 25 years ago.