Better Midler is one sick puppy.

Scratch that. Sick puppies’ morals are far superior. The Divine Miss M ripped into Mitt Romney during Monday night’s presidential debate when he explained that encouraging gender equality could help combat extremism in the Islamic world.

Fascinating how the Left is all about “lady parts,” but the brutal mutilation of lady parts by radical Muslims has nothing to do with extremism.

According to Midler, polygamy a few generations back in Mitt Romney’s family tree is cause for outrage, but gender apartheid and the oppression and mistreatment of women in the Muslim world is totally no biggie. Or at least, those things have nothing to do with the extremist ideology responsible for terrorism, slavery and a host of horrific atrocities.

During the debate, Romney said that in addition to going after the bad guys, the United States needs to pursue “a pathway to get the Muslim world to be able to reject extremism on its own.” That includes fostering economic development, better education, civil societies and gender equality, he explained.

But brilliant human rights crusader and foreign policy strategist Bette Midler scoffs at the notion that gender inequality is part of Islamic extremism. Empowering women to become educated, independent and in control of their own destinies is just silly talk, right? No need for Islamists to modernize that part of their radical beliefs.

We’re not sure what Bette’s strategy for fighting extremism is, but we know it starts with locking up filmmakers who insult Islam. Why blame terrorists for their actions when you can blame America first?

Besides, Midler has way more important concerns.