Hollywood is known for pushing their limits, but a personal attack is below the belt. Unfortunately, the first episode of FX Network’s Mrs. America believes boundaries are a thing of the past. It twists Phyllis Schlafly’s life to redefine the motivations behind her attack on the Equal Rights Amendment. Hollywood portrays her as a woman with dreams under men’s thumbs.
Episode One’s opening scene provides a falsified view of Republican life. Mrs. Schlafly strides out onto the stage in a red, white, and blue bikini for every male Republican to caterwaul at. She’s not the only one. All the Republican Party member’s wives are on display donning patriotic colors. Backstage, Hollywood’s Phyllis is in self-denial of the male driven world around her.
Portraying a conservative congressional campaign objectifying women suits Hollywood’s agenda. Always inserting unnecessary sensual scenes to sell their films, Hollywood endorses liberalism. Does this not objectify women?
Furthering their allegations, Phyllis brings muffins to her husband’s office. An employee mocks his own child saying he has nothing to talk to his baby about. He asks Phyllis if she had ever considered opening, “a baking business.” Clearly, Hollywood’s Phyllis lives in a chauvinistic world, but she’s too “blind” to see it.
Hollywood depicts John Fred Schlafly as a selfish man caring only for himself. As for Mrs. Schlafly, she’s just a woman to him. This is inaccurate. Fred Schlafly completely supported his wife in her endeavors. On Good Morning America in 1978, Fred discusses first meeting Phyllis saying, “I thought she was very beautiful, but also she was extremely well-informed, better than I was on many subjects.” Married for thirty years at the time and agreeing it was “love at first sight,” self-sacrificial love is evident. Hollywood’s objectification theme is their own personal issue, not the Schlaflys’.
Setting Phyllis in a world of men, Hollywood is staging their goal for Phyllis’s life: an opportunistic woman. They want the public to believe Phyllis was a dreamer oppressed by men. Hollywood invented an objectifying, chauvinistic, and selfish patriarchy causing Phyllis to oppose the Equal Rights Amendment because it is convenient for their narrative. Phyllis’s personal life defies this reasoning proving that Hollywood is using Phyllis’s life to propose not only an agenda, but their own version of history.