The state has no interest in granting women the right to equal pay, unchallenged reproductive autonomy, self-determination, freedom from objectification, or true judicial recourse as a result of sexual assault. As long as the state privileges capitalism, it privileges the market’s right to determine that some workers are worth less than others. Suppressing the wages of all who slave for the profit of the few. And women are the key to patriarchy’s reproduction of the system in subsequent generations.
Statism and capitalism protect the rights of those who hold capital to raise up workers within a framework of patriarchal privilege; the suppression of women as child-rearing folk who raise obedient children to do as they’re told, so that they may be obedient wage workers when the time comes. So it will do and has done everything it can to discourage women in the workplace by privileging men in wage and advancement. And to discourage them in other arenas both public and private so that they may be subservient to the aims of the system.
The state freely exercises the right to curtail women’s health choices (not surprisingly all forms of reproductive health before and after pregnancy), because women are the means to producing wage slaves. And poor women in particular are increasingly coerced under threat of penalty or punishment to relinquish their rights to reproductive health, because the poor will raise up more workers who expect less. This is a contributing factor to racial issues in state-capitalism, because people of color provide a convenient and historically viable population to disenfranchise due to the history of slavery, because they – as minority population – have already been devalued as human beings.
Women will be objectified by capitalists – via media, entertainment, and policy – objectifying them at every turn so that women themselves remain demoralized, and the culture at large is suspicious of them when they exercise autonomy and self-determination. Capitalism controls the views of what women may aspire to; ideals of beauty that perpetuate objectification; and diminished expectations about how high they might aspire to power in the public sphere or even in their own homes. Because capitalists own the means of distributing these messages, these images and the very outlets for societal expectations about women and what they may achieve, women are disadvantaged by the system itself.
This is why, increasingly, we hear conservatives question what “legitimate” rape is, why courts seem increasingly likely to issue diminished sentences to folks like Brock Turner, valuing male potential over women’s actual experience of being sexually assaulted. It’s why the Trumps of the world may malign or mistreat women with impunity, and the media portrays it as entertaining, even in its “shock” value. Sadly, it isn’t shocking to women who experience it daily. This is why after nearly 100 years of suffrage women still vie for their God-given rights as individuals to determine their value independently of a system that undermines it at every turn.
This is where rape culture originates. It comes from state-driven capitalism, where patriarchal culture and the profit motive assign relative value to who is able to produce and who is ripe to consume. And women – as the “producers” of succeeding generations of wage-slaves – are expected to indoctrinate their children with the values of obedience, subjugation to authority, and consumption. Women are vessels, in this world view; and the state – fully vested in the interests of capitalists and protector of their profits – will ultimately try to undo a hundred years of women’s progress for the sake of protecting the “masters” of the economy by ensuring these “vessels” serve their purpose, don’t overstep their bounds, and don’t – via self-determination – decide their desires lay elsewhere. Their humanity is diminished deliberately for the sake of profit.
The assault on sexual minorities is about the sacrosanct framework of a patriarchal, state-supported, capitalist economy that is uncertain how to handle people who defy the prescribed roles of men and women in this system. Transphobic terror is based in fear of the autonomy of the individual to break these bonds. Just ask any FTM trans-person who has benefited from male privilege in ways large or seemingly small (I have.), or the FTM trans-person who is told that sex work (objectification) is their only recourse to financial independence (I have.), whether they choose it for themselves as an autonomous and freely chosen profession, or not.
Capitalism values the exaltation of the male who is “destined” to create capital, and only the female inasmuch as “she” creates (reproduces) consumers or low-wage workers and is consistently led to believe she can’t be more than objects for the pleasure of the male psyche, or outlets for their dominance. Ask why birth control and abortion are so rigorously targeted by conservatives. Or why, in light of recent polls, conservatives even speak in back channels about repealing the 19th amendment!
In this capitalist model, we are only worth what we “produce” or what we “consume.” And it is fully supported by the state, created to advance these aims. As long as the state stands, as long as the capitalist model exists, women will never have autonomy. This is what I rail against.