Prominent feminist says maybe the U.S. to blame for radicalizing Boston bomber

The title of this post is not an exaggeration. Read on for the actual quotes.

We are used to feminists insisting upon nothing bad ever being a woman’s fault.

When something bad happens, all of a sudden the Strong and Independent (TM) women lose all agency and it’s the fault of someone else – a man, some men, the institutions of our society, the government, etc. If nothing else can be blamed, it’s the fault of the big boogieman, patriarchy.

This loss of agency has usually been limited to shielding women from the consequences of their own actions when the responsible party, in part or entirely, is female.

Now, the well know feminist, Hanna Rosin, author of the book “The End of Men” has taken it to another level. Her blog, the XX-Factor at has a new post titled “Why All This Maternal Sympathy for Dzhokhar?” wondering why the middle aged women in her social circle are sympathetic to the younger brother in the Boston bomber duo:

But what stands out in the ardor for Dzhokhar is a deep maternal strain. Given what the man is accused of doing—killing an 8-year-old, among others, and helping to set off bombs that were loaded to maim—how do you explain that? In the past week and a half I have not been to a school pickup, birthday, book party, or dinner where one of my mom friends has not said some version of “I feel sorry for that poor kid.” This group includes mothers of infants and grandmothers and generally pretty reasonable intelligent types, including one who is an expert on Middle Eastern extremist groups.

With a fig-leaf nod to the facts of the case for those of us living in reality, she moves on to fantasizing about what turned the older bomber into a murderous terrorist (ed: emphasis added):

Probably the correct moral response to this misplaced maternal sympathy is the one my Slate colleague had, which is to say: “People, please. Cut that shit out. He’s an adult and a mass-murderer.” ….

Maybe the lesson is that just like teenage ardor, unleashed maternal sympathy is a powerful force that can land in strange places. Maybe if we had learned more about the 8-year-old who got killed in the bombings it would have found a more appropriate target. Maybe (the most depressing answer) this all stems from the fact that Dzhokhar is cute.

Or maybe (the most hopeful answer) the maternal sympathy will help us get to a more sophisticated understanding of homegrown terrorists. With every one that comes our way—theLackawanna Six, the Portland Seven, the Virginia Jihad Network—we search for the day they went overseas, traveled to a mosque in Egypt or Yemen or Chechnya, and got radicalized. But the truth is that their time in the U.S. almost always plays a big part in their transformation. They try to assimilate and either succeed all too well and become disgusted with themselves or are stymied. (Older brother Tamerlan’s inability to continue to box in the top national competition because he wasn’t a citizen after a rule change barring legal residents—in other words, to become more American—seems to have narrowed his options and radicalized him, for example.) Maybe the mothers drawn to Dzhokhar don’t want to bring him home and lay a warm cloth on his brow. But they are struggling in some way not to disown him. And that will in the end help us better understand people like him and what forms them. And if that’s not true, then they should just cut it out.

Yeah, that sure sounds like a sophisticated understanding of the case. The fault is really on the part of the United States who took them in as refugees and then oppressed them. If only the boxing governing body had known that their rule changes were creating terrorists and murderers.

Uncle Ruslan disagrees, but what the hell does he know? He doesn’t look like a serious student of feminism, so he is obviously wrong. Unlike his nephews, he’s not a victim of oppression, for whatever reason.

Now apply the same logic and emapthy to the responsible young men in high profile recent cases like Steubenville and Rehtaeh Parsons. Can you imagine the howls of outrage from the feminist hordes if you dared even think like that? Just ask CNN.

Reaction to Rosin’s fantasy about the reasons behind Tamerlan Tsarnaev’s actions? Crickets.

There are two lessons here: (1) Feminist hypocrisy knows no bounds. (2) Feminists do not have a problem when women are expressing “maternal sympathy” for cold-blooded murderers, instead there is likely a more sophisticated understanding of homegrown terrorists in it. Why hasn’t the FBI hired some of these friends of Hanna Rosin yet?


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