In Germany it is quite popular for conservative media personalities to blame the 68ers (the rebellious students from late sixties) for all of society's ills, just as American conservative pundits blame the "dirty hippies" (and Bill Clinton) for every conceivable problem from "losing the Vietnam War" to sexual promiscuity. Perhaps no other media star in Germany went so far - and became so successful - in bashing the 68ers than Eva Herman. For Herman, the feminist ideals that were first articulated in the 1960s have been very damaging to German women. In her best-selling book Das Eva-Prinzip Herman told women to abandon the workplace and stay home with their children - that is the true feminine ideal. This retrograde vision of women resonated with conservative politicians and emboldened Eva Herman to attack feminists even more viciously.
But today Eva Herman revealed the ideological roots of her thinking, and, in doing so, violated the last taboo in Germany:
BERLIN: Germany's NDR public broadcaster fired a talk show host and author on women's issues after she praised Nazi Germany's attitude toward motherhood, the station said Sunday.NDR said Herman, who has written books urging a return to more traditional gender roles, was fired after confirming to station management that she made the statement reported in the Bild am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday.The statement was: "What I wanted to express was that values which also existed before the Third Reich, such as family, children and motherhood, which were supported in the Third Reich, were subsequently done away with by the 68ers" — a reference to 1960s leftists.Other news reports had quoted her as saying at the presentation of her latest book that, while there was "much that was very bad, for example Adolf Hitler," there were good things, "for example the high regard for the mother" under the Nazis.
The authoritarian thrust of Herman's polemic was apparent from the beginning. The journalist Thea Dorn was sued by Eva Herman over a year ago for publishing a commentary in the Tageszeitung entitled Das Eva-braun Prinzip (I found a reprint here). So one has to ask: why did it take NDR so long to fire her? Why does the media promote women with reactionary views and silence those with progressive idea? We have the same situation in the US media, where racists like Michelle Malkin and right wing fanatics like Anne Coulter are spotlighted. Coulter has written books praising the neo-fascist tactics of Joe McCarthy; she labeled a Democratic presidential candidate a "faggot" and "jokingly" called for the murder of "activist" judges. Malkin wrote a book praising the internment of tens of thousands Japanese-Americans in WWII and urged a similar policy today for American Muslims. Where are the boundaries in the American media? At least Eva Herman was honest about the origins of her ideas and now she has paid the price.