I began the slow crawl toward libertarianism a long time ago, but didn’t begin studying the philosophy and movement until about 2007. At that time, I considered myself a neophyte. Today, I’m a full fledged libertarian, although I still have many questions and much to learn.
Over the past year, I have expressed myself through discussion and the occasional rant with friends and family members. Usually, this is enough for me, the quiet, generally soft-spoken introvert. Lately, though, I have grown frustrated with the limited discourse, and through that discontent have begun reading blogs and news feeds written from the libertarian perspective.
Most of those authors are men. In fact, I would venture to guess that all but one or two are men. When I did a Google search today for female libertarians, the first three or four pages returned were filled with articles and blog posts whose title question was Why are there so few (or no) female libertarians? Each individual author tried to answer that question, most falling back to the stereotyped generalizations of the emotional, social woman as an explanation.
This is not adequate, nor is it quite true. Not all women are emotional and/or social. Many women are logical and rational, however passionate they may be about their individual goals and concerns, but not all have been exposed to libertarian thought per se, and so women who might otherwise lean libertarian do not self-identify as such. It doesn’t help that the few outspoken female libertarians are demonized or trivialized by the main stream press, or drowned out by the loud cacophony of male libertarians. Or so it seems.
Perhaps, too, some women lack the courage to come out because of societal pressure, or perhaps because libertarianism isn’t well understood by the populace at large or even considered a valid view point. Who knows?
What I do know is that the dearth of female voices in this movement necessitates that every woman who is able must step up and speak out, both to encourage our fellow libertarians, male or female, and to educate others to the importance of libertarian thought.
This is my voice and my journey. Do with it as you will.