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Amherst's Feminist Monologues By: Michael P. Tremoglie
FrontPageMagazine.com | Friday, January 30, 2004


The Amherst-Pelham Regional School Committee banned "West Side Story" because its members said it stereotyped Puerto Ricans. They banned "Peter Pan" because it stereotyped Native Americans. Yet they want the play the "Vagina Monologues" performed even though it stereotypes males and Christians -- not to mention the fact that it's crude and arguably pro-pedophilia.

Most disturbing about the play is the fact that it features the seduction of a female minor by an adult woman, legitimizing predatory sexual behavior before an audience of minors. It seems the Amherst School Committee is indoctrinating rather than educating.

The Amherst-Pelham Regional School Committee approved the performance of the controversial play at the Amherst Regional High School in Amherst, Massachusetts. Although the school committee believes it is appropriate and even necessary to prohibit plays that they feel are slurs against certain ethnic groups (even if they are not; the heroes of "West Side Story" are also Puerto Rican). Conversely, they also feel the need to promote slurs against certain genders and religions.

The School Committee hearing featured those who advocated the play including the District Superintendent Jere Hochman, and those who objected to it. Comments from the advocates included one Rob Okun, who was quoted in the Daily Hampshire Gazette as saying, "The play offers a unique perspective on female sexuality by ''taking it out of the...pop culture and putting it into the educational context…probably one of the most important steps in the gender healing...work that we are championing.''

Gender healing? According to what has been written about the play by those who have seen it, references to men in the play are negative. This is true about references to Christians, as well. Indeed, one monologue states, "Christians don't have vaginas." This is, of course, quite a shock to obstetricians and gynecologists of all religions.

Even Betty Dodson, a sex educator who is an international authority on women's sexuality, and whose feminist credentials cannot be questioned, panned the play. She said the play represents the worst form of anti-male, anti-sex feminism.

After writing the play Eve Ensler became interested in having her play serve the noble purpose of educating the public about violence against women. However, while she may want to discourage bigotry and violence towards women, she encourages the negative stereotyping of men and Christians

The Amherst controversy is not about free speech, as its protagonists would have us believe. The Amherst controversy is about promoting a certain philosophy and lifestyle, to minors no less. Presenting it as a noble venture to prevent violence against women is just smoke and mirrors. Their only goal is to further the radical feminist cause -- at the risk of legitimizing statutory rape and sexualizing minors in the audience in the process.


A former police officer, Michael P. Tremoglie recently published his first novel, A Sense of Duty. His work has appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, Human Events, and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has a Master of Science degree from Saint Joseph's University, Philadelphia.


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