[A] quarter of an hour quite convinced [Emma] that Mrs. Elton was a vain woman, extremely well satisfied with herself, and thinking much of her own importance; that she meant to shine and be very superior, but with manners which had been formed in a bad school, pert and familiar; that all her notions were drawn from one set of people, and one style of living; that if not foolish she was ignorant, and that her society would certainly do Mr. Elton no good.
Emma was not required, by any subsequent discovery, to retract her ill opinion of Mrs. Elton. Her observation had been pretty correct. Such as Mrs. Elton appeared to her on this second interview, such she appeared whenever they met again,—self-important, presuming, familiar, ignorant, and ill-bred. She had a little beauty and a little accomplishment, but so little judgment that she thought herself coming with superior knowledge of the world, to enliven and improve a country neighbourhood; and conceived Miss Hawkins to have held such a place in society as Mrs. Elton's consequence only could surpass.
Emma, by Jane Austen
Although I tremble to directly address those of greater learning and understanding than myself, I take pen in hand to give my poor, ignorant opinion regarding the place of women in society today. This is a topic of frequent discussion amongst my father Mr. McArdle's country seat, Upper West Side, where I grew up. Indeed, Washington is very like Upper West Side in attractiveness and exclusiveness, although it has a shocking lack of parks and other amenities that made Upper West Side such a charming, beautiful place. When you are transplanted like me from a beautiful country seat (which my father had for quite a long time, indeed, most of his adulthood) to a smaller, less convenient set of rented rooms, you will be able to appreciate how difficult it is to leave such happiness behind. But I digress.
Interestingly, this debate on the role of women seems mostly to be taking place among libertarian men, while I am here, ready to be consulted. Not that I expect to be consulted, mind you, being only a humble female, yet I do believe my utterly unique experience as the only female libertarian of any merit should have led those of good breeding like my own to seek out my opinion.
Some might have misunderstood me when I said that the conservative (and by association libertarian) is the Negro of academia and media, so let me hasten to add that the Negro has been mostly sorely vexed and put upon, and while I am a modest women, I too have felt vexation at the constraints placed upon women like myself in previous eras. Women of other classes do not feel the same restrictions as myself, of course. We were banned from rising to our natural station in life, forced to take jobs no woman of my class could ever want.
Most women would not have become professionals in the first place and so were not affected by this prejudice against women in the workplace. Most women saw their role as a wife and mother, and no doubt if they became widowed or needed to supplement their husband's small income by working in factories and shops, they could go to their fathers for additional support, as I did when unemployed.
While nothing is more unjust than trying to inflict justice on others, I still find it personally advantageous to have equal rights, and therefore am willing to accept whatever privileges my rank and wealth can give me, no matte how wrong it might be. Nothing is worse for a marriage than power inequality, which should exist solely in the economic spheres of the lower classes, who by virtue of their lack of morals and hard work have found their natural level. Not even my caro sposo, dear Mr. S., a Christian ("former") evangelical most unimpeachably committed to equality, in theory and action, could be trusted with that much power over his wife.