Poor Diablo Cody just can’t get a break! That old bat shit Phyllis Schlafly hates Juno as much as adoptees and first parents do. Not for the same reasons, of course. Schlafly claims the yukky film is a playbook for penknife wielding feminist castrators in their battle to carve out a happy-ever-after male-free utopia:

The theme of this movie isn’t love, romance, or respect for life, but the triumph of feminist ideology, i.e., the irrelevancy of men, especially fathers. The men in the movie are likable, but marginalized; beyond their sperms and their paychecks, they have no value worth considering, and can be thrown overboard by independent women and girls.

The movie portrays the adoption as a good outcome, but it is not. The baby will grow up without a real or even a surrogate father, and Paulie, the father, is not asked to approve the adoption or to sign the adoption papers.

Some day the child will ask why he does not have a father. The truthful answer is that feminism has made fatherlessness acceptable in our society.

But don’t get too excited. Phyl the Pill, founder and president of The Eagle Forum, is the grande hag of the American Right. (Remember A Choice Not an Echo? The destruction of the ERA?) I saw her work her stuff at the 2002 Christian Coalition Road to Victory conference at the Washington Convention Center. She looked like she’d been made-up by an undertaker. The Tennessee Eagle Forum joined The National Council for Adoption, the Tennessee Christian Coalition, The Family Research Council, and other odious anti-adoptee organizations and individuals as an amicus to overturn Tennessee’s semi-open records law (Doe v Sundquist). They lost. She’s as much a friend of first parents (ie fornicators) and adoptees as NCFA.

UPDATE: March 19, 2008, 11:05. Another take on Juno by adoptee activist Jdean Strauss appears in today’s USA Today (also archived on Adoptee Right News Blog.


  1. It’s always dangerous to go looking for a theme in any piece of entertainment, be it book, movie or ‘film’. Witness the furor over the supposed message in this fantasy on life as a 16 year old girl.

    It’s a movie. Juno’s choices are driven by plot considerations. Juno couldn’t choose abortion because it was a romantic comedy. The father of the child was irrelevant to the adoption decision because of who he was, as much as because of the way adoption works in this society. (Although I seem to recall passing mention of him being required to sign off on the adoption.) The break-up of the prospective adoptive parents was simply another plot point, imserted to give the sense of drama needed to keep the story going the requisite 90 minutes or so.

    Ultimately, Juno is about Juno: a naively mature and still self-centered 16 year old girl whose decision gave rise to a speed bump in her early 21st century life.

    The story is as much about adoption as Harold and Maude was about suicide.

  2. Bravo on this piece of enlightenment. I like Juno. She’s a spunky girl with an attitude. I guess that makes her a feminist. I don’t know why Phil doesn’t want to make adoption “cool,” especially an old school closed adoption like this one.

    The great thing about Juno it is allows us to have a conversation about adoption, abortion and teenage sex and responsibility. I guess that’s a feminist attitude too.

    I heard one woman recently say that she believed that in a “Christ-centered home” the man is in charge based on God’s design. Let’s hope her husband hasn’t patronized any high-priced prostitutes lately. Or low-priced for that matter. Perhaps all this prostitution stuff is also ordained by Christ – after all without sinners there wouldn’t been a need for salvation and the high-priced prostitutes of The Word.

    Given all the hypocrites on the religious right, political center, far left and right wings, a future without men might not be so bad. Ah but I forgot, Juno was on top in this movie. A life without men might not be such a good thing after all.

    How about men wearing condoms – now THAT’S an inspiration that even a feminist could love (although apparently not former NY Luv Gov Spitzer).

  3. I googled “juno” and “feminism” and landed on Schlafly’s screed, as well as this response.

    I thought it was interesting that Schlafly didn’t notice the window of opportunity Juno opened to Bleek. Schlafly said Bleek had absolutely no say; but there’s that scene early on where Juno gives him a chance to have input. It turns out that his willingness to anticipate and appease the standard issue approach to these situations, plus Juno’s own hair-trigger response to his failure to express all-out commitment right out of the gate, contribute to her decision.

    There’s a lot you can say about this dynamic, including the perfectly reasonable observations that, cool glibness aside, Juno and Bleek are really just kids.

    But you can’t say what Schlafly said.

    On the other hand, Schlafly said one thing that got me thinking; and that was the implication that Mark was marginalized all along. I hadn’t thought of that, and I’m going to give it a little thought. I think it’s possible to consider this, AND dodge the bullet of accusation of misogyny. Obviously, however, Mark is not merely the victim Schafly would have us believe, and Vanessa was not merely a castrating fembot–perhaps a tad castrating, yes, perhaps a little too conventional, albeit seasoned with a touch of heart-warming indulgence–but also arguably realistic. That Vanessa, in the end, [SPOILER ALERT: Stop reading if you haven’t seen Juno!] decides to raise the boy by herself isn’t exactly a repudiation of men by feminism. But it can be argued, as I’m sure Schlafly would, that the very idea of honorable, responsible single-motherhood *is* something of a bestowal of feminism on our society.

    The question Schlafly would stentorously intone concerns whether its depiction in Juno is a scurrilously misplaced heroism.

    Juno can be appreciated as a heart-warming repudiation of the idea that human foible, in all its glorious foibliness, must bow and scrape before the pretense of unimpeachable straightjacket moral order imposed by our religiously motivated (hence above criticism) “betters.”

    But, the proof is in the pudding. Juno is an operatic expression of something grand and genuinely touching. All that aside, when the house lights go up and we emerge from the theaters into the light of day, we have to deal with who we are. Will we survive our families? Will we survive the baleful glares of the Schlaflys?

  4. The only bizarre thing in the review was the “weird music” how old fogey and irrelevant. I was disappointed by juno, all hyped up. I thought it was totally hip canned and I was not happy with the ending. She had no real bond w vanessa. Why not find a 2 parent family? I didnt like the way she treated

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