Some of the worst examples of humanity can be found in questions to advice columnists. Thankfully, The Washington Post’s Carolyn Hax didn’t support the outrageous and oppressing feminism of the mother who asked how she could keep a little boy off a public playground. You know, to destroy the patriarchy or whatever.
“Playground Drama,” as the anonymous advice-seeker was described, told Hax about a group of moms with daughters who gather at a local playground at the same time each week. There’s no designated “girl time” or “boy time” at the playground and apparently no way to rent the park for any specific park. Yet this mom decided this was her time and that no boys should be allowed.
The anonymous mom said she asked the mother of the little boy (nicely, she thought) if she would take her future Patriarchal Oppressor and get the heck out of there. Naturally, the other mom did not agree, and “seemed angry” at the woman’s request.
“If she comes back, is there a better way I can approach her?” The advice seeker asked Hax. “This has been such a sweet time for moms and daughters, and having a boy there is naturally going to change things. We live in a world where boys get everything and girls are left with the crumbs, and I would think this mom would realize that, but she seems to think her son is entitled to crash this girls-only time. I know I can’t legally keep her from a public park, but can I appeal to her better nature?”
Hax was having none of this, and asked how she could appeal to the mom’s “better nature.”
“Shooing off the mom and her boy was terrible. And justifying it as a cosmic correction, for which an innocent child bears the weight? And still trying to do this even after you’ve had time to think about it? Wow,” Hax responded.
Hax also suggested that little boy had feelings, and might even display better “girl behavior” than some of the girls at the park. She also pointed out that the boy’s mother is a woman who would seem to be at the mercy of those same “crumbs” the advice seeker mentioned, and may have just wanted to spend time with other moms at the park.
“And if you’re going to accuse anyone of being ‘entitled,’ then ask yourself who just asked the world to bend to whom,” Hax concluded after suggesting the mom hold her anti-boy event on private property.
I’ll let feminist scholar Christina Hoff Sommers have the last word: