[This definitely veers into SSTDT but the greater point is too broad for that]
Most ROK readers should find the idea of vocation intuitive. Women have purposes specific to their sex and should not attempt to steal or destroy manly places. However, the caste hierarchy and relative leveling of vocations may seem extraneous to American readers: the US were founded over the idea that neither a centralized Church nor a nobility should exist. Did not the Founding Fathers reject the caste system from the start? Indeedbut I am neither American nor conservative enough to put them on the same footing as sacred texts.
A hierarchy where manly men have authority over feminine women works well. Each one has a role fit to its nature and can realize one’s own purposes with the help of the other. An inverted, matriarchal hierarchy where women would rule, on the other hand, is dissatisfying: women would look like caricatures of men by being bossy, let their defects such as conformism and group-thinking tendency express, and turn men into slaves or short-term driven pleasure-seekers. None of the parts would be able to realize its better tendencies, such as loving and caring for women, or meeting with challenges for men.
Likewise, the four-caste hierarchy is the good or fairer one. A society following it and having proper individuals at each level would be the most harmonious one, even in poverty. When the regular order gets messed up, so does the whole society: Kshatriya pretending to spiritual authority start subordinating it to political interests, just as the Protestant princes of Europe did in the sixteenth century; Vaishya pretending to power end up commercializing everything, turning politics into a marketplace where lobbyists and sellouts abound. “Inferior” castes cannot help but bring their essential ethos with them no matter where they go or what they pretend to be.
The lesson, here, could be that modernity has been mostly synonymous with a “vaishya-ization” of society: universities have turned into an academic niche market, politics have become a market as well, and the process have been aggravated by women trying to play menespecially upper bourgeois women pretending to political power. Each “inferior” caste denythe “superior” ones their rights and prerogative have made the world poorer.
As for myself, I have no problem with the idea that some, even men, should not have the right to financial independence: libertarianism may work well among men of Mensa, but a 70-IQ people clearly need some paternalist management not to drown into their own stupidity.
“Even a capable Shudra must not accumulate wealth, for when a Shudra becomes wealthy, he harasses Brahmins.” (10.129) Some wealthy people fund seditious, divisive groups such as BLM, some who enjoy a small authority act like power-tripping small chiefs, some women get beta orbiters and management power
A fair hierarchy is not one with equal chances or opportunities to get promoted, but one where each one can reach his rightful place.
Alt-Right blogger Lawrence Murray contrasted Buddhism, which enjoys some cultural status and association with the upper classes in the West, with an “intensely alien Hinduism.” Practicing yoga, reciting a handful of mantra and mingling with other bourgeois bohemian while sipping fair trade green tea seems indeed easier than vindicating such a frankly non-modern order.
Modernity in general and the so-called American Dream in particular entertain a deep trend of anti-traditional, anti-dharmic thinking which promotes an abstract and formally autonomous individual able to do has he wants. “Gender” or the negation of biological sex in the name of a chosen or psychological sex is but the last product of the trend.
If you could choose between a society where Hillary Clinton had won the election and a society with castes and sacred fires, would you have the guts to choose the second optionknowing that women would be women but also that you may be, say, a Vaishya and thus not entitled to (for example) give a scholarly opinion about what the Bible says?
Whatever your answer, remember that modern ethical theories come and go with the Zeitgeist, whereas dharmic cultures still exist today side by side with modern technology. I could bet anything that in a hundred years the Law Code of Manu will still be studied while Anita Sarkeesian’s name will be forgotten.