Ask any Bernie Sanders supporter what their ideal society is and they would probably say the Scandinavian countries, especially Sweden. Sweden is said to be a good socialist country, not like those bad socialist ones such as the Soviet Union, Nazi Germany, North Korea, Cuba, or contemporary Venezuela.
The current government in Stockholm prides itself, to Justin Trudeau’s eternal shame and disappointment, as being “the first feminist government in the world.” When Donald Trump was signing various executive orders during his first days in office, Swedish officials appeared to mock the new President with a similar photo of the signing of a new climate law in which all those present in the photo are women.
Compare and contrast: Trump restricts women's rights; Sweden's Isabella Lovin pushes world's most ambitious (?) climate law pic.twitter.com/1po54sDYsb
— Megan Darby (@climatemegan) February 3, 2017
Then, the Swedish government embarrassed itself for the whole world to see. Trade Minister Ann Linde recently led a business delegation to the feminist stronghold of Iran. Linde and her fellow women stood up for the feminist ideals they strongly believe in by kowtowing to the Iranian regime by wearing hijabs during the meeting. Linde’s courageous explanation as to why a group of Swedish feminists donned headscarves: she did not want to break Iranian law. So much for a feminist foreign policy.
The same feminists who will accuse you of being theocratic and anti-woman for being pro-life will subject themselves to the societal norms of those countries that actually do oppress women. Prime Minister Stephan Lofven claims to have raised human rights issues with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, although it is difficult to see Rouhani taking recommendations from Lofven after the lack of seriousness Linde showed with respect to her supposedly strongly held values.
Sweden’s “feminist” policies do not stop at bowing to the whims of seventh century theocracies; they also apply to snow removal. Yes, “feminist snow removal” is a thing in Stockholm. The problem according to the advocates of this scheme was that emphasizing snow removal on the main roads was sexist because the roads were likely to be used by men. When Stockholm was buried by snow in November, city politicians got to put their theory to the test. It was an abject failure. Politicians fixed what was not broken. Snow removal teams cleared bicycle lanes and sidewalks under the justification that these were likely to be used by women. As a result the main roads were not given priority and public transportation failed, traffic congestion increased, and injuries requiring hospital visits also raised. Around 1,700 public transport users were planning on suing as the Swedish capital ground to a halt.
The United States should not be more like Sweden. Whether it be in terms of quota filling in government or implementing some idea that escaped some Feminist Political Theory classroom, Sweden is not an example to replicate and these are just two examples as to why.