Last year Councilwoman Barbara Sexton spoke at the Louisville Women’s Leadership Conference. The theme was “Readiness, Resilience, and Results,” echoing her keynote partner Karen Hough’s rhetorical question, “Are you resilient?” And no, most people are not. Resilience is a situation, a confluence of factors including internal ones like coping skills but also factors completely out of a person’s control. No amount of time management will resolve wage slavery, poor health, or an unmarketable skill set. Money makes people resilient. When people are evicted, changing their outlook on life won’t get their house back. Nevertheless, the presenters will have urged the audience to be resilient anyway.
The Leadership Conference, led by two female CEOs and marketed toward women, was expensive; this year a table for ten costs $2,700. If you are doing the math, it would take over a week for a person making minimum wage to pay their share and learn about “Outdated Presentation Tips”. This is the brand of feminism, if it is feminism, excludes more people than it advances by perpetuating the patriarchy– even if it fills its ranks with women. This approach doesn’t speak for all people subjugated by the patriarchy, it doesn’t even speak to the needs of most women.
Karen Hough’s insinuation that women need reminding to focus on results can be left for another day.