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The Rohan Rambler

SR April 1, 1592

ISENGARD.  A fierce debate surrounds Middle Earth's most famous tower, Orthanc.

“It was built by men, to celebrate men, and to protect men,” says Dana Harad, of the Lesbians International Community. “It needs to come down.”

At the center of the debate rests the mixed legacy of Numenor, whose aggressive descendants conquered and subjugated many of Middle Earth's indigenous peoples.

“I think we all know Gondor built it,” says Harad. “Can you name one lesbian or even one woman in Gondoria history? I can't.”

Orthanc, however, has its defenders.

“For starters,” says James Dunland, “engineers say it can't be taken down. Studies show you could apply 1,000 kilo-newtons of force to it and it wouldn't budge. Some speculate that even Ents can't yank it down.”

Dunland also points out that Orthanc wasn't built with any patriarchal intent.

“If it were patriarchal, I'd be the first to vote for it to come down, but it's not,” says Dunland. “The vaginal-like ring around Orthanc is problematical, but I simply don't think the Dunedain [builders of Orthanc] had any patriarchal intent.”

Harad and others, though, strongly disagree.

“As long as Orthanc stands,” Harad says, “women in Middle Earth will have no equality.”