The Promise Keepers
One Woman's Opinion
Usually I'm not this dense.
Frequently I'm the first one to catch the nuance or the inference of people's words and actions. I have no difficulty seeing both sides of any given situation, a talent that serves me well in most cases but has often left me straddling the fence with no way down in sight.
However, I admit that Patricia Ireland has got me stumped this time.
The recent Promise Keepers rally in Washington, D.C. seems to have gotten Ms. Ireland's knickers in a serious twist. As a matter of fact, she and many other NOW-ers seem very upset about the success of this organization. I keep hearing recurring themes of "a return to male dominance" and "re-establishment of the patriarchal society" as well as "reversing the strides women have made for equality."
But I can't see the evidence of it.
What I see is an admittedly large organization, consisting solely of Christian men, standing and publicly proclaiming that they have shirked their responsibilities. They admit they are responsible for much of the decay we all see in our society, and that they have to regain control of themselves to address these problems effectively. I see them publicly proclaiming their faith to the world, and vowing to again set worthy examples for their peers, their wives, and their children.
I, for one, have no problem with this.
Why is it all right for women to come together to reinforce their worth but when men do the same, women suddenly see a conspiracy in the works? Are women so unsure of themselves that they feel threatened by the simple act of male bonding? Can we expect to be taken seriously if we see trickery and machination behind every rock and tree?
Every woman I have talked to sees the Promise Keepers as a positive and necessary force in today's American society. Make no mistake - Promise Keepers is a force to be reckoned with. But forces can and frequently are positive things. What the Promise Keepers stand for is positive and uplifting, and is beneficial to American families.
Political organizations like NOW have historically had a difficult time perceiving any large movement as having benign motivations. Patricia Ireland looks at the Promise Keepers and sees merely the potential for opposition to a cause she strongly believes in.
What she must understand is that many women see the mission of Promise Keepers as long overdue, and they feel that the salvation and reconciliation of their families is far more important that an organization that has lost touch with the realities of their lives.
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