Debate and Discussion

Sexism
isukun at 11:55AM, Sept. 2, 2010
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I believe the cost of the witch hunts people like you launch against them do more harm than good, in poisoning people's attitudes and painting well-meaning people as agents of evil or automatons to be “reprogrammed.” This kind of “us against them” scenario is unhealthy and nonconstructive.

That whole rambling first part of your post is exactly the kind of reasoning that was used to justify “separate but equal” and argue against the civil rights movement. Good job.

Again, you're selectively ignoring things I've said about the necessity of liberation movements and you are intentionally misrepresenting my position.

So in other words, you're just a hypocrit claiming that historical evidence is only relevant when it supports your personal views. Speaking of selectively ignoring things…

it's condescending for you to state that women don't understand what their choices are.

It is far more condescending to claim their place is “barefoot and in the kitchen” due to some imaginary biological imperitive. And as I've said before, it is only condescending if it isn't true. This situation is exactly the same as how people “choose” their religion. Nobody sits a kid down at an early age, outlines all of the major religions, and lets a kid make a choice. They simply take them to their parents' church every week, send them to Sunday school and indoctrinate them into a particular religion. It is not condescending to claim that the Christian who was raised ONLY on Christian teachings doesn't understand what their alternatives are.

It's a one-size-fits-all scapegoat.

You really need to start coming up with something to back yourself up with rather than simply trying to break down other people's arguments. You aren't good at it. We are talking about a social issue. Who would you prefer I blame it on? After all, historically, racism, sexism, and religious intolerance have always been a product of society. There is no dark conspiracy that causes this, just thousands of years of mysogyny.

It's very hard to get away with even the appearance of sexual discrimination today.

Only if you're a company.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
imshard at 12:00PM, Sept. 2, 2010
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isukun
Well namely because in Western society, sexual discrimination is illegal and that law is enforceable.

Actually, it really isn't. There is no law which outright bars sexual discrimination. The law is limited to only certain forms of discrimination and there are actually a lot of situations where people can discriminate without any legal consequences.

Also, social norms are defined by society, not the law, and there are still a lot of situations where discrimination (including but not limited to sexual discrimination) is considered the norm.

http://www.dol.gov/oasam/regs/statutes/equal_pay_act.htm
http://www.archives.gov/education/lessons/civil-rights-act/
http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/codification/executive-order/11478.html
http://www.hud.gov/offices/fheo/progdesc/title8.cfm
http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/statutes/pregnancy.cfm
http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/statutes/cra-1991.cfm
http://www.opm.gov/oca/leave/html/fmlafac2.asp
http://www.dotcr.ost.dot.gov/documents/ycr/nofearact.pdf

and the soon to be passed: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Employment_Non-Discrimination_Act


Read 'em and weep, and those are just the big ones from the USA, not including numerous state laws. Hell California has an entire department devoted to the subject: http://www.dfeh.ca.gov/DFEH/default/. Even if you're a victim of simple harassment or poor treatment, YOU CAN SUE. I can't claim to be aware of all the European laws but they tend to be even more progressive (new shiara laws aside).

Quit holding onto a victim/entitlement POV. Releasing grudges and moving past bias is the only way to overcome it. Don't get me wrong, I'm a man, but still an active member of NOW, and NOMAS http://www.nomas.org/. I have a very clear idea of the challenges faced by the women in my own life and I have both helped and watched proudly as my mother, sisters, and close friends overcame barriers to a happy and complete lifestyle.

Western society is defined by its laws. Laws are in essence a codification of publicly agreed upon societal morals as defined by the will of the majority. Sexism is not something you're allowed to act on and if you're the victim of it you have only yourself to blame for allowing it to continue. I understand pressure, I understand fear, but the problem is not society. Society allows women to overcome and master obstacles, the resources are all there and a lot of effort is poured into awareness and fighting institutional chauvinism wherever it is found. Women and Men both have the power, rights, and resources to fight discrimination in our society. To me, that means the problem is not society itself, or else society would remove these tools from law and practice.

Edited for spelling, added links
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isukun at 5:14PM, Sept. 2, 2010
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Read 'em and weep, and those are just the big ones from the USA, not including numerous state laws.

Read ‘em an weep about what? None of those laws offer blanket protection against discrimination. The laws are only designed to protect certain legal rights, and even then, there are exceptions. These laws apply mostly to corporations. Many organizations are still free to limit membership based on whatever criteria they see fit, even race, gender, and religious belief. Individuals are also not required to be indiscriminate in their day-to-day affairs and no, you can’t sue over most offenses. Unless you can prove my actions rob you of your legally protected rights, there is nothing you can do about it.

Western society is defined by its laws.

You've got that backwards. We write and rewrite our laws based on our society. That's kind of the point of having a representative government.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
mlai at 7:07PM, Sept. 2, 2010
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So what's the point of the argument if it's not a legal one? Groups of ppl will also discriminate or hate on other groups of ppl. It's human nature. And not restricted to sex, ethnicity, class, or religion.

FIGHT current chapter: Filling In The Gaps
FIGHT_2 current chapter: Light Years of Gold
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:06PM
El Cid at 7:10PM, Sept. 2, 2010
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isukun
That whole rambling first part of your post is exactly the kind of reasoning that was used to justify “separate but equal” and argue against the civil rights movement. Good job.
It isn't, and without actually demonstrating the error of the logic, you're committing a sophomoric logical fallacy in finding guilt by association. For example, the methodology used to prove gender inequalities isn't wrong because of its association with eugenics (unfortunate though that may be), but because like that method it relies on an arbitrary variable to determine causation and makes the assumption of constancy across groups where such does not exist. Nice try there, once again trying to accuse me of supporting racism, but you're just making yourself look even more intolerant, not to mention desperate.

isukun
Again, you're selectively ignoring things I've said about the necessity of liberation movements and you are intentionally misrepresenting my position.

So in other words, you're just a hypocrit claiming that historical evidence is only relevant when it supports your personal views. Speaking of selectively ignoring things…
The quote you're referencing had nothing to do with historical evidence; it was about my opinions regarding social reform. You're not even bothering to read my posts anymore.

isukun
It is far more condescending to claim their place is “barefoot and in the kitchen” due to some imaginary biological imperitive.
My position is and always has been that a woman's place is wherever she chooses to be.

isukun
And as I've said before, it is only condescending if it isn't true.
lol! Say what? And I've said it before, veracity has nothing to do with tone! A lot of very true statements are made condescendingly. Do you really think you can change the definition of words just by saying they mean something else? You really are out of touch with reality!

isukun
This situation is exactly the same as how people “choose” their religion. Nobody sits a kid down at an early age, outlines all of the major religions, and lets a kid make a choice. They simply take them to their parents' church every week, send them to Sunday school and indoctrinate them into a particular religion. It is not condescending to claim that the Christian who was raised ONLY on Christian teachings doesn't understand what their alternatives are.
I was raised ONLY as a Southern Baptist, in a Southern Baptist and Methodist family, and yet by middle school I was already experimenting with Hinduism and Buddhism, and by high school was an atheist, as I remain today. I have three brothers. We were all raised in the same household, experienced the same conditions and had the same opportunities in life. My older brother is a semi-successful entrepreneur, and I'm finishing up my college degree. My twin brother has eked it out in menial positions all his life and dealt with drug issues, but he's turning his life around. My younger brother has been in prison on-and-off since he was fifteen, and is currently locked up for a series of robbery-kidnappings. We all turned out differently, despite our influences, because of the CHOICES we made. And you know what? It was ALL because of society.

isukun
You really need to start coming up with something to back yourself up with rather than simply trying to break down other people's arguments. You aren't good at it.
Oh, boo-hoo! You don't like me telling you how silly your opinions are. I've already stated my position, and you've failed miserably at disproving it. I have no need to present anything new to “back myself up,” nor do I need to argue ad nauseam with someone who's too wrapped up in his own self-aggrandizing dream world to be bothered with reality. You see, this is the good thing about being right: You don't need to be creative or clever to tell the truth. You only need those skills to be a bullshit artist.

That's not to say that's what you are, by the way; it'd be giving you too much credit. You're just rehashing all the greatest hits, but at least you're persistent about it. I'll give you credit for that.

isukun
Who would you prefer I blame it on? After all, historically, racism, sexism, and religious intolerance have always been a product of society. There is no dark conspiracy that causes this, just thousands of years of mysogyny.
Blame what on? I don't think I can help you with that, because I don't see what you're complaining about. The evil you're complaining about is so vague and the cause you're relating it back to so broad and generalized, that it's almost like you're shooting buckshot at the side of a barn and claiming victory if a single pellet strikes home. *shrugs* Go ahead and blame “society,” if it makes you happy. It's arguably true enough, but not in any way meaningful. Yeah. Society. I'm happy with it if you are.

isukun
It's very hard to get away with even the appearance of sexual discrimination today.

Only if you're a company.
If individuals choose to be sexist jerks in their personal lives, I don't see how that is any of your business. What a terrible thing, that people might actually be free to make bad decisions! If only we had you to make up our minds for us.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
El Cid at 7:14PM, Sept. 2, 2010
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mlai
So what's the point of the argument if it's not a legal one? Groups of ppl will also discriminate or hate on other groups of ppl. It's human nature. And not restricted to sex, ethnicity, class, or religion.
There probably is no constructive point to the argument, I think. But beliefs like the ones Isukun expresses can have policy implications down the road if they're accepted as valid by enough people in the right places, which is a real hazard.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
isukun at 12:41AM, Sept. 3, 2010
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You only need those skills to be a bullshit artist.

Funny considering your entire post reeks of BS. You aren't even arguing a point, anymore. You present flawed data, ignore it when people call you on it, ignore evidence that doesn't support your theory, and when all else fails, try to set yourself up as a victim using faulty logic while slinging mud at the opposition. When you actually have something to say, I'll be glad to give you a response. So far, however, you have failed to present anything even remotely convincing.

So what's the point of the argument if it's not a legal one? Groups of ppl will also discriminate or hate on other groups of ppl. It's human nature. And not restricted to sex, ethnicity, class, or religion.

The intial question was “Is this still a problem in Western society?” Ozoneocean's original post had very little to do with legal issues and everything to do with social perceptions.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
ayesinback at 9:10AM, Sept. 3, 2010
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isukun
The intial question was “Is this still a problem in Western society?” Ozoneocean's original post had very little to do with legal issues and everything to do with social perceptions.

Thanks for the reminder. At this point it’s difficult to see what the original question was what with all the mud in the air.

El Cid has convinced me that it is not a problem for him. Personally, I think he has the makings for a very successful career in politics. He phrases his opinion with eloquence, but does not prove fact. And he’s more than persistent about it.

Several have written that sexism is not a problem because we have laws to make it illegal. But laws protect only as far as they are enforced, and before a law can be enforced, there must be determination that a law was violated. It’s called burden of proof.

Don’t know how many of you have used our legal system in forwarding a claim of sexual discrimination, but I have direct personal experience here. I really don’t want to go into the whole thing. (1) it just makes me bitter all over again and (2) I don’t want it debated. But the upshot is that I couldn’t prove my claim.

If I had been able to afford an attorney, maybe I would have had access to the company’s documents, if they kept such records. Maybe if the two women who had been similarly affected before me had agreed to testify, then we could have proven a discriminatory pattern. On the other hand, the management did not have to prove why they let me go. Somehow they were able to acknowledge my consistently-high job performances and admit that I was a valued employee. Somehow they were able to plead financial hardship while hiring a new employee with less experience than I. None of this was considered proof. I was left in a bizarre, Monty-Python-esque situation of “just LOOK at the bones, Man”.

And as exceptional as I might pretend I am at times, I really don’t think mine was a unique experience. I think it happens still.

The question is not what to do about it. The question is whether sexism exists. But if we want to do anything about it, the first step is to acknowledge that it exists.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 11:14AM
imshard at 11:29AM, Sept. 3, 2010
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ayesinback
The question is not what to do about it. The question is whether sexism exists. But if we want to do anything about it, the first step is to acknowledge that it exists.


Of course it does. My assertion is that its not a problem with society in general. I simply used legal precedents to show that the common societal standard is egalitarian. Or else we'd still have Rule of Thumb laws allowing men to legally beat their wives. Thus Western Society is not sexist.

As El Cid kind of mentioned, using “society” as a blanket excuse for sexist situations is incorrect. Sexism is a problem that needs to be fixed. In any break/fix scenario the first step is to correctly identify the causes and source. The cause in this case is not “society”. I cited the source in my first post in thread as a problem with a group that exists in all societies. Chauvinists. This clearly defined group of individuals (of both Men AND Women), continues to hold onto anachronistic roles of women as subservient.

I think it would also be helpful at this point if we could clear up how everybody is defining Sexism and Western Society.

Traditional family roles are not inherently sexist. Assuming one spouse should be subservient and/or poorly treated (as far as less than human in some instances) IS sexist though. Its also sexist to posit that you MUST fill a traditional role. The egalitarian reality is that you have the choice of whatever lifestyle you want (and we do in Western society), and marriage is an equal partnership that you can choose to partake of or not.

Also; Western Society as opposed to what? Eastern Society? Any of the African cultures? Middle-Easterners? Western society is a group that can only be defined in contrast to other groups. And here I thought we were moving past such definitions in favor of a culturally diverse world.
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isukun at 12:18PM, Sept. 3, 2010
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Traditional family roles are not inherently sexist. Assuming one spouse should be subservient and/or poorly treated (as far as less than human in some instances) IS sexist though. Its also sexist to posit that you MUST fill a traditional role. The egalitarian reality is that you have the choice of whatever lifestyle you want (and we do in Western society), and marriage is an equal partnership that you can choose to partake of or not.

This I agree with. I just see the problem as being tied to social norms and not just a select few who happen to have extreme views. When people find out they are going to have a girl, their first instinct is to paint the room pink, buy frilly clothes and baby dolls. Children have a tendency to be immersed in an atmosphere which promotes particular cultural and family roles right from the start. That weighs heavily on their freedom of choice as they grow older and in the extreme cases encourages greater chauvinism in some individuals. Chauvinists are not the cause of the problem, just a byproduct of it.

The solution would be to raise children without the preconceived notions of family roles and once they grow old enough to communicate, let them decide how they want to develop. Let them decide whether they want the Barbie or the GI Joe, whether they want the chemisty set or the EZ Bake oven, whether they play baseball or take ballet, whether they get the magical princess outfit or the Batman costume.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
imshard at 12:52PM, Sept. 3, 2010
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isukun
This I agree with. I just see the problem as being tied to social norms and not just a select few who happen to have extreme views. When people find out they are going to have a girl, their first instinct is to paint the room pink, buy frilly clothes and baby dolls. Children have a tendency to be immersed in an atmosphere which promotes particular cultural and family roles right from the start. That weighs heavily on their freedom of choice as they grow older and in the extreme cases encourages greater chauvinism in some individuals. Chauvinists are not the cause of the problem, just a byproduct of it.

The solution would be to raise children without the preconceived notions of family roles and once they grow old enough to communicate, let them decide how they want to develop. Let them decide whether they want the Barbie or the GI Joe, whether they want the chemisty set or the EZ Bake oven, whether they play baseball or take ballet, whether they get the magical princess outfit or the Batman costume.

I think we need to agree to disagree here. Chauvinist is the term we use to describe a sexist individual. Who perpetuates these views other than the individuals? There are no social norms, just beliefs that are held by people. Blaming society just gives these people a way out of being accountable for themselves.

Also there is a difference between family roles of son and daughter and gender roles. I see your point on programing gender roles into children with toys, clothing and what else. Frankly though certain percentages of that falls biological imperatives, and cultural choices.
Once a child is old enough to start expressing their tastes most parents will comply to some degree. Even so as the Major of the Child a parent has a right to pass on their beliefs to their children. I can't believe people would (as a rule) force their children into unsuccessful or unhappy roles for the sake of a society that is based on free choice. Regardless of the EZ bake sets, I think the nature of a person will typically override the programming and we definitely have a culture that promotes individuality.

That brings us back to Chauvinists. The few people that are hardcore enough to tell their daughters to stay in the kitchen, keep them out of school, and forbid them from playing with the wrong toys, or being seen by boys unsupervised. Whilst teaching their sons women need to shut up and put up, and they are the masters.
By comparison I think the pink vs blue room is a superfluous choice, especially since most nurseries are actually white.
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isukun at 4:31PM, Sept. 3, 2010
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Frankly though certain percentages of that falls biological imperatives, and cultural choices.

There is no biological imperitive which hard codes girls to like barbie dolls, cooking, or dance and boys to like GI Joe, video games, or football, these are all constructs, products of society which fulfill no biological need, yet all reinforce gender stereotypes of subserviance in girls and dominance in boys.

I can't believe people would (as a rule) force their children into unsuccessful or unhappy roles for the sake of a society that is based on free choice.

And yet, that's what we do. We establish the gender divide right from the start, before the child has any say in the matter. The child's first clothes, first toys, their entire world is defined by their parents. They are taught from the start that accepting those roles and that demeanor is “normal” and young children have a tendency to crave validation from their parents. They are going to adapt to whatever mould is set before them. Many people in the modern world end up in places they don't want to be because they have been brought up believing that's what is expected of them. And this isn't something that just occurs early on in life, either. Parents sign their kids up for sports to get them out of the house, plan activities as a substitute for daycare, buy toys based on outside recommendations of what is approrpiate for boys and girls. Even in adulthood many parents encourage their daughters to settle down and start having kids. For men it's chase your dream and for women it's find the right guy while you still can.

I think the nature of a person will typically override the programming and we definitely have a culture that promotes individuality.

People have a tendency to follow their programming, no matter how ridiculous that programming may be. And while we may promote individuality, that doesn't mean we promote total freedom to think and act as we please. I could wear a giant foam cowboy hat as I walk down the street and I'd get more than a few odd stares and comments. We only support individuality so long as we choose from a closed circle of socially acceptable behavior. Fall outside that circle, however, and your individuality is no longer something to be lauded, but something to be criticized.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
imshard at 5:37PM, Sept. 3, 2010
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isukun
People have a tendency to follow their programming, no matter how ridiculous that programming may be. And while we may promote individuality, that doesn't mean we promote total freedom to think and act as we please. I could wear a giant foam cowboy hat as I walk down the street and I'd get more than a few odd stares and comments. We only support individuality so long as we choose from a closed circle of socially acceptable behavior. Fall outside that circle, however, and your individuality is no longer something to be lauded, but something to be criticized.

Lemme stop you RIGHT there. Chauvinism is one of those behaviors that is considered abnormal and widely admonished. If I walk around leering at women and telling them to go home to their husbands I'd get slapped, or worse!

Yes, our society includes gender roles. It's part of who we are, because we're not an androgynous species, nor would we like to be. Not all of it is inherently bad or even sexist. It Just Is. Some of the measures you advise simply go too far. Children ARE naturally inclined to certain behaviors and tastes by their genetics. These are things that cannot be changed and handing over barbies VS. Gi Joes is not an automatic damnation to a life of servitude.

That just sounds daft! Parents are not running indoctrination camps in their homes. Whats you alternative? Make the kids wear uniform gray jumpsuits and keep them in state camps raised by gender neutral machines until they're 18? Eventually they're going to notice that half the other kids look like them and the other half don't. Then they're going to have these weird urges and want to act on them with one half or the other. I played with GI Joes and I had no problems recognizing women as people to be respected, any more than my sister played with barbies and went on to be an engineer with a successful career. Come off it, and smell the smog, this is the real world we're talking about.
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El Cid at 6:37PM, Sept. 3, 2010
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Imshard: You're wasting your time trying to speak rationally with Isukun. He'll try to downplay it, but what you outlined is EXACTLY what he'd like to see. The fact that everyone already has equality of opportunity is not enough for him; he wants to see equality of outcomes, a truly gray world. You can't get there just by giving people freedom, because free people engage in nonrandom behavior, which leads to patterns, which people like him will inevitably choose to interpret as injustice.

isukun
…When you actually have something to say, I'll be glad to give you a response. So far, however, you have failed to present anything even remotely convincing.
Not convincing to YOU, no, but I had no expectation of convincing you. Zealots never reconsider. I'm more concerned with demonstrating to anyone else who might be reading that your opinions (which sadly do represent a widely accepted sentiment) are misguided, and that you can only claim injustice by first removing free will from the equation. I understand this is easy for you; you reject self-determination. That's fine. But I believe most people do believe they have choices in life, and if they take the time to read what you've written critically as I have, they too will will find it unpersuasive.

ayesinback
The question is not what to do about it. The question is whether sexism exists. But if we want to do anything about it, the first step is to acknowledge that it exists.
If that is the question, then there's no debate necessary: Yes. Sexism does exist. Always has and always will, as long as there's a single individual out there who holds chauvinistic beliefs. That's not a difficult question, nor does it elicit a very useful answer. I believe the more important question is whether or not our society is sexist. Is sexism present and accepted to an extent that it can actually be considered a predominant characteristic? I think not.

And as for what we need to do about it, I have a very NON-politician answer to that: be vigilant. That's it. Strike it down wherever and whenever it rears its ugly head. I don't know the particulars of your situation, but if you honestly do believe you were sexually discriminated against, I would strongly urge you to contact the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission as soon as possible (there are statutes of limitations involved) and find out what your options are. It's free, and they take these things very seriously.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
isukun at 7:03AM, Sept. 4, 2010
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Chauvinism is one of those behaviors that is considered abnormal and widely admonished.

Only because most people use the correct definition of the term. Chauvinism as it relates to gender is the belief that one gender is superior to the other. THAT attitude will cause deviant behavior that we look down upon in modern society. That is not in any way related to what I am talking about, though. The people who perpetuate the problem are not chauvinists by that definition, but regular people doing what they think is normal.

Besides, whether chauvinism falls outside the circle doesn't change the fact that women who exhibit more “maculine” qualities and men who exhibit more “feminine” qualities also fall outside that circle.

Some of the measures you advise simply go too far.

How so? If you are right, then kids will choose the interests and behaviors that you claim fit their nature and there is no change. If you are wrong, the system is sexist and these changes need to be made.

Whats you alternative?

The solution would be to raise children without the preconceived notions of family roles and once they grow old enough to communicate, let them decide how they want to develop.

I've already stated my alternative, and it has nothing to do with gray jumpsuits, internment camps or raising kids with machines. There is a lot more to being an individual than whether you're an innie or an outie. If anything, my approach actually discourages conformity and helps kids get a better grasp on what they want out of life so they don't find themselves lost or dissatisfied as adults.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
ayesinback at 10:45AM, Sept. 4, 2010
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El Cid
The question is not what to do about it. The question is whether sexism exists. But if we want to do anything about it, the first step is to acknowledge that it exists.
If that is the question, then there's no debate necessary: Yes. Sexism does exist. Always has and always will, as long as there's a single individual out there who holds chauvinistic beliefs. That's not a difficult question, nor does it elicit a very useful answer. I believe the more important question is whether or not our society is sexist. Is sexism present and accepted to an extent that it can actually be considered a predominant characteristic? I think not.
I did take the earlier suggestion to look up some definitions. There’s quite a bit of interpretation when it comes to sexism:
• discriminatory or abusive behavior towards members of the opposite sex (wordnetweb.princeton.edu)
• prejudice or discrimination based on sex; especially : discrimination against women (www.merriam-webster.com)
• attitudes or behavior based on traditional stereotypes of sexual roles (dictionary.reference.com)

I don’t think our society is abusive to either gender, but I do think there are societal attitudes or behavior based on traditional stereotypes that ultimately serve to discriminate and over which free choice has little or no sway. Perhaps households exist where there is no sexist attitude, but as soon as the TV is on, as soon as a magazine enters the house, society’s sexist attitudes are introduced. And when you step outside your door, you can choose whether to accept, tolerate, ignore or fight the attitudes of others that will factor into your world, but you can't choose to obliterate the existence of sexism.

But sexism is not chauvinism. Almost unilaterally, the definition of chauvinism incorporated the word militant, and frequently fanatical. Extreme sexism. So, although there are chauvinistic individuals, western society itself is not chauvinistic.
El Cid
And as for what we need to do about it, I have a very NON-politician answer to that: be vigilant. That's it. Strike it down wherever and whenever it rears its ugly head.
With the more subtle and pervasive thing called sexism, I think the only approach is on the individual level, which is to not buy into it. Turn off the TV; don’t let your 9-year old dress as a hooker; etc. And certainly, do what you can to prevent sexism from ever reaching chauvinistic levels again. Striking down is good.
El Cid
I don't know the particulars of your situation,
Yeah, I didn’t share much. I brought it up mostly because I never expected to undergo such an experience , I thought we (the company, the laws) were further evolved than what they were. And then I let the experience overtake my self-worth for WAY too long, although not for the entire 3-1/2 years that it took the State to decide to dismiss my claim. Although I appreciate the option you present, I prefer to protect what traces of sanity remain.
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last edited on July 14, 2011 11:14AM
El Cid at 5:46PM, Sept. 4, 2010
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ayesinback
I don’t think our society is abusive to either gender, but I do think there are societal attitudes or behavior based on traditional stereotypes that ultimately serve to discriminate and over which free choice has little or no sway. Perhaps households exist where there is no sexist attitude, but as soon as the TV is on, as soon as a magazine enters the house, society’s sexist attitudes are introduced. And when you step outside your door, you can choose whether to accept, tolerate, ignore or fight the attitudes of others that will factor into your world, but you can't choose to obliterate the existence of sexism.
My thoughts on that: I think it definitely deserves examining just how much television and magazines really has to do with shaping people's gender associations. Popular media and advertising has a need to reflect the society it serves, so it's just as plausible that the reason you see less female action heroes and male househusbands on TV is because they're so rare in reality, and have been since well before television or the printing press were ever invented. The roles women play on television today are vastly different from those you would have expected to see in the 1950s, because women have advanced dramatically since then, and there are plenty of non-traditional female influences throughout the popular media as well so it does represent their diversity. Also I'd imagine that a lot of the magazines we read here reflect very different customs in their international publications, again to reflect their audience. So I think it's more likely that the media changes to reflect who we are rather than the other way around.

It's true that we all experience social pressures telling us how we're supposed to behave, or dress, or what kind of music we're expected to listen to. Ultimately the choice is still ours, and it's a far reach to call that a form of discrimination. Who we are is determined not so much by the pressures we experience in life, but how we respond to them. Saying you turned out a certain way because people expected you to is nothing more than an excuse. There are limiting factors in life, like economic ones, or geographic ones, which leave us with imperfect options. But other people's expectations do not limit our options.

We can't choose to obliterate sexism, you're right. Or any other -ism, for that matter. But there's also no reason why it should affect you. If someone doesn't think you can do something because you're a woman, then prove him wrong. Yes, unfortunately, there's always going to be some sexist/racist/nationalist jerks out there who do bad things because of what they believe. And they should be punished when they do. But that shouldn't color the way any of us view society as a whole.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
Hawk at 6:47PM, Sept. 4, 2010
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There are definite signs in the animal kingdom that indicate mothers have built-in maternal instincts. I specifically remember that when my dog miscarried, she suddenly starting trying to treat our cats like puppies. I don't think she learned that from a magazine, because we kept all reading materials inside the house.

Is it such a stretch to think that human women might have ingrained maternal instincts, and moreso than men? The PC answer is that both genders should have those instincts, and our society is forcing women to be maternal via social expectations and indocrinating media… but I don't entirely buy that. I think there is some biology involved. It's wrong to expect women to do the bulk of child-raising, but we shouldn't be shocked and cry foul when a large percentage of women choose to.

Now, this point isn't meaning to downplay the power of media, magazines, TV, and other stuff. I just don't think it has 100% control over us.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:47PM
ozoneocean at 7:31PM, Sept. 4, 2010
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Wow, there's been a lot of heavy discussion here! :)

I think El Cid has provided a valuable contribution here: he's shown just how insidious and self justifying sexist behavior can be.
This dove-tales so neatly with my initial post in the thread- in that we just don't think sexism is a problem any longer because of various superficial factors, but it is a problem still because of certain ingrained attitudes.

I think as a society we still have a lot of growing up to do. :(

—————————-
The terms “Chauvinism” and “Chauvinist” are not synonymous with “sexist”. They refer to a person who militantly, enthusiastically advocates for one position or cause. That is what they have always meant since they were coined to describe the over-nationalistic behavior of their namesake.
What people mean here is “male” chauvinism.
We could probably ALL be considered “Chauvinists” for the positions we advocate, if we advocate them staunchly and enthusiastically enough.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:37PM
Hawk at 9:33PM, Sept. 4, 2010
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You may be distilling El Cid's points too much, Ozone. I think some of it make sense.

The pay discrepancy between men and women is documented. When one person says it's because of sexist employers and another person says it's because of pregnancy and maternity leave, I'm the kind of guy who thinks it's somewhere in between… like maybe both factors play their part. And why couldn't they?

I've always been enraged at the idea of assumed sexism or assumed racism. It's a process of creating easy scapegoats without having to investigate further. And this is what happens when we see that women are getting paid less than men and we jump straight to the conclusion that the mean, evil men that run our business are all cheating women out of their fair pay. You may think El Cid is sexist for the explanation he provided, but I like that he's at least applying some critical thinking to the problem and giving us all something to discuss.

There could be LOTS of factors besides cut-and-dry sexism, (or in addition to sexism).
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:47PM
isukun at 9:55PM, Sept. 4, 2010
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There are definite signs in the animal kingdom that indicate mothers have built-in maternal instincts. I specifically remember that when my dog miscarried, she suddenly starting trying to treat our cats like puppies. I don't think she learned that from a magazine, because we kept all reading materials inside the house.

Dogs have a different biology and social structure than humans. If you want to look at things in terms of how they work in nature, you need to compare similar species. Monogamous species, for instance, have a tendency to show far fewer phyical differences between male and female members of the species and more often than not both parents/genders share responsibility in protecting, providing for, and raising young.

Now, this point isn't meaning to downplay the power of media, magazines, TV, and other stuff. I just don't think it has 100% control over us.

Nobody is suggesting that is the case. You will always find some people who manage to break away from the social standards. Just because we have natural inclinations, however, does not mean that those natural inclinations cannot be overpowered by societal pressures or that people don't adopt personas and roles in society based on what they think is expected of them rather than what they want for themselves.
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:05PM
rokulily at 10:44PM, Sept. 4, 2010
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El Cid
But there's also no reason why it should affect you. If someone doesn't think you can do something because you're a woman, then prove him wrong. Yes, unfortunately, there's always going to be some sexist/racist/nationalist jerks out there who do bad things because of what they believe. And they should be punished when they do. But that shouldn't color the way any of us view society as a whole.

seriously? no reason? at all?


pffffffffhahahahhahahahahahhahahahahahhahahahahahhahahaha, oh wait you're serious? hehehe thats so cute.

lemme tell you something. i don't believe sexism will stop me from living but i do think it affects the way i have to live my life. i have to adjust, and compromise, and fight. why? because people assume things from me as a young lady. all the time. i fit into some role and people go with it. they box me in and i always have to push back if i want to go anywhere almost. and i say people- not just guys.

if this was one or two people maybe then i wouldn't think society but the thing is when a bunch of people do it they are the society. and these people are my society.

i think with sexism there is too much assumpution- that one person has to do this or another person is less then this. could be said for a lot of other things too, like racism. and these assumputions have to come from somewhere- they come from us. from what we are taught, from what we see, to then what we know. they come from the society, the society of us. so yes i blame society because society is just another way of saying me, you, and all those other people who have co-exist together. why do you think society is something more distant then the people around you?

now there are ‘laws of a society’ and theres unspoken laws of a society. like that whole bit you did with your brother and mom- the family. thats an unspoken law. the whole notion of family is a small society and your duty to it are these unspoken laws- not always right but there. now the ‘laws of a society’ may be correct and in place but unspoken law rules- if you can't beat that in whatever enviroment you're in ‘laws of a society’ will not save you. luckly with extreme cases like murder and theft the unspoken laws are in agreement with ‘laws of a society’ but take for instance where a male gets raped. very few cases are reported- is it because it almost never happens or because its shameful and so very hard to prove?


also- hawk- its not ingrained, its chemically and capiable of effecting the fathers too. babies produce certain chemicals which helps create bonds. its more reinforced in females because of our own chemical hyjinxs and the fact that we can start some of the chemical bonding a little bit eariler what with the whole 9 months deal
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 3:09PM
El Cid at 5:47AM, Sept. 5, 2010
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rokulily
seriously? no reason? at all?
None. Not unless you allow it to.

rokulily
pffffffffhahahahhahahahahahhahahahahahhahahahahahhahahaha, oh wait you're serious? hehehe thats so cute.

lemme tell you something. i don't believe sexism will stop me from living but i do think it affects the way i have to live my life. i have to adjust, and compromise, and fight. why? because people assume things from me as a young lady. all the time. i fit into some role and people go with it. they box me in and i always have to push back if i want to go anywhere almost. and i say people- not just guys.
Sounds to me like you're allowing it to affect you. Not trying to be a butt-head, but you did respond to me, and with laughter no less, so I have to ask just how you feel sexually persecuted? What you wrote here is very vague. Please be a little more specific so we can better understand your concern.

rokulily
…they come from the society, the society of us. so yes i blame society because society is just another way of saying me, you, and all those other people who have co-exist together. why do you think society is something more distant then the people around you?
I don't, actually. You're confusing my position with Isukun's. In fact, you've succinctly made a point that I was trying to get across to him: That blaming society for people's attitudes is virtually tautological, which makes it not a terribly meaningful or useful argument.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
kyupol at 7:48AM, Sept. 5, 2010
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Sexism is just one of the divide and conquer tactics used against us (along with left-right paradigm, religion, race, etc.) so we get distracted from the real problem (visit infowars.com to learn what the real problem is).

Just accept that men and women have inherent differences and there is nothing you can do about that.

Men are always stronger than women… with some exceptions of course. A 6 foot tall amazon is definitely stronger than a 5 foot tall skinny guy. A blackbelt level female fighter can beat up a man with no training with no problem. But when a man and woman with the same level of training would fight, the advantage lies with the man because that is just the way his biology is.

Men's brains tend to be more “left brained” (with some exceptions of course). This is why more men are scientists, doctors, etc. because those jobs require alot of logical thinking. The man's brain is also hard-wired to build civilization and fight in wars.

Why do you think more men tend to be skilled tradesmen (plumber, carpenter, auto mechanic, etc.) and soldiers? It doesnt matter what type of socialist affirmative action program or incentive you have to get women into skilled trades. In the end, the women mostly DO NOT LIKE those jobs. That is just the way the man's brain is hard-wired to do. Why do you think little boys like to play with toy trucks, tools, and pretend play that they are a soldier or cop or some kind of macho superhero or something.


Women on the other hand have the power to create life. Whether you like your mother or not, fact is she still gave birth to you. Speaking of giving birth and taking care of children, that is what the woman's brain is biologically hard wired to do. Why do you think you always see the little girl playing with her doll and even putting the doll in a stroller and giving it a pretend baby bottle or something? It is simply because that is what she is hard-wired to do. To nurture. To care. To be a mother.

Women's brains are more hard-wired to perform jobs that require alot of “feeling”. Why do you think the alternative medicine field (hypnotherapy is equally distributed… homeopathy and other fields that require a similar amount of study to a medical doctor is slightly male dominated) is female-dominated? It is because alternative medicine has this “holistic” philosophy at its core wherein you feel out the client's mind-body-spirit connection or something along those lines. Same thing goes with customer service jobs, administrative assistants, etc. – female dominated.

It is because the woman's brain is hard-wired for “feeling” and not for logical thinking. That is not to say that is a bad thing. In fact, that is the reason why more women are psychic (healing types and looking into the future… confronting evil entities, women tend to generally chicken out).


Again, those things I wrote about men and women are GENERAL and do not apply in all cases. There are always exceptions.

The point is, a free society and open society does not IMPOSE gender roles on men and women… and at the same time, it doesn't try to force change upon the very nature of men and women (as demonstrated by “affirmative action”, feminism, and political correctness).

If a woman wants to be a plumber, so be it. If a man wants to be a ballerina, so be it. Let them.

In the end, men and women must accept the way things are. Because if you try to rebuild their nature, it will only give them psychological damage.

If you look at websites about women against feminism, all they talk about is “motherhood is great” and “screw this whole career-woman lifestyle being forced by the feminists!” and “we've been lied to by the system!”

And if you make university into this system that emphasizes “feeling” over logic (in the non-hard sciences courses), more men tend to drop out and/or shy away from it. Even the men whose minds were never exposed to the type of information me and others provide. They become depressed and empty shells because in their gut, they know that something is inherently wrong with the system and they just do not know what it is.

Again. Just learn to accept the inherently different traits that men and women have. Their inherent strengths and weakneses. Learn to live with it. Learn to compliment it with the other. That is what working as a team is all about.

I know you socialist feminazis and manginas are gonna jump on me for saying this. But I'm just telling you… no matter how hard you try to rebuild human nature from the ground up… you are DOOMED TO FAILURE. :)
NOW UPDATING!!!
last edited on July 14, 2011 1:27PM
ayesinback at 8:03AM, Sept. 5, 2010
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Just wanted to welcome Mr. 1215 AD /ce (as in medieval, probably at least as up-to-date as the magna carta) to the discussion.

Since I agree there is freedom of choice, it really isn't necessary to glance through previous posts and see what points have already been pistol-whipped.

under new management
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:14AM
bravo1102 at 8:22AM, Sept. 5, 2010
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kyupol
I know you socialist feminazis and manginas are gonna jump on me for saying this. But I'm just telling you… no matter how hard you try to rebuild human nature from the ground up… you are DOOMED TO FAILURE. :)

Yes, it's called belief versus evidence. No matter how much the evidence shows one course the person will always cling to their belief. This is how you can have rational well thought out arguments that pass all the tests objective critical thinking can throw at them summarily dismissed by those who cling to that they believe they see and experience as opposed to what actually is occurring.

As the spouse of a legal secretary involved in labor Law those laws against sexual discrimination work and they work very well. But it does go both ways. For every fews case of real discrimination there are the frivilous ones that pad out the statistics and make headlines. That of course doesn't stop people from taking advantage of them by slinging all kinds of accusations and hoping one will stick. Like someone once accused and then exonerated of charges once said “Where do I go to get my reputation back?”

The accusations are so quick to be reported and yet when they are found to be without worth, well no one ever believes that. They were so well convinced the person was guilty that no amount of evidence to the contrary will clear the person's name. There is no place you can go to get your reputation back.

Ironic how someone mentioned 1950's sitcoms as an example of woman's roles changing and the modern format of the television sitcom was practically invented and certainly perfected by a woman in the 1950s and most critics agree wasn't matched for forty years. I Love Lucy and Seinfeld
last edited on July 14, 2011 11:33AM
ozoneocean at 8:54AM, Sept. 5, 2010
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Hawk
d. When one person says it's because of sexist employers and another person says it's because of pregnancy and maternity leave,
That's the key point. The assumption that pregnancy and maternity leave are the leading factors is central. He believes that women are genetically and biologically inferior for modern workplace roles.
That might be putting a very negative spin on his views, but that is what it boils down to. This view is shared by a few here. And it's even used as a justification for explaining why women can't take on certain roles to the same level as their male counterparts.

This isn't really up for argument either, since they hold these views, admit to them, and have spent all their time here justifying them.

That is what sexism is.
 
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:37PM
Plague Doctor at 9:02AM, Sept. 5, 2010
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Kyupol-no offense,but labeling men and women as total different species doesn't exactly help beat sexism.
Ofcourse,there are biological differences between men and women,but their brains aren't that different.Biological differences cause different hormonal releases that only affect body changes appropriate for the gender and sexual preferances.
The right-left hemisphere theorie is depened on the individual regardless of the gender.
Basicly what you are saying that women are programmed to be spazes who react on any stress by crying,arguing and manipulating,while men always stay cold headed and strong while they think their problems through logic.
This is just a negative media perception that has it's roots in medivel tales of brave knights and damsels in distress.
The society is much more tolerant to womens outbursts of distress than males.
Which is kind of contradictory of you,when you posted a video of a social experiment when the abuser was women.Again,this type of negelect is caused by society's false perception of men as natural abusers and women as always helpless victims.
Regarding fitness level,yes,statistics show that on average,women may be slightly slower and weaker,hence on slightly.But that goes only for highly train fit women.
And how many average women keep themselves active,built muscles and stamina,study martial arts and lift weights?Hardly any.
Society discourages women from reaching their full physical potential because that would make them “unfeminine” and “undesirable”

I would have expected atleast from you not to beleive anything society pushes down our throath,atleast from your political blog,which I agree with on btw.
last edited on July 14, 2011 2:46PM
El Cid at 3:01PM, Sept. 5, 2010
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ozoneocean
That's the key point. The assumption that pregnancy and maternity leave are the leading factors is central. He believes that women are genetically and biologically inferior for modern workplace roles. That might be putting a very negative spin on his views, but that is what it boils down to.
I don't mind you putting a negative spin on what I've said (from everything else I've seen of you, I'd rather expect it actually), but in this case you've distorted things to a point where you've changed the meaning. Inferiority and superiority are subjective value-based judgments. What you've described would be a determination of competitiveness, something which can be measured and is not a matter of opinion.

ozoneocean
This view is shared by a few here. And it's even used as a justification for explaining why women can't take on certain roles to the same level as their male counterparts.
It was used to explain why women don't take on certain roles and in the same way as men do, not why they can't. I can't think of any jobs off the top of my head which men can do and women can't.
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM
El Cid at 3:13PM, Sept. 5, 2010
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kyupol
…It is because the woman's brain is hard-wired for “feeling” and not for logical thinking.
Whoa.

kyupol
That is not to say that is a bad thing. In fact, that is the reason why more women are psychic (healing types and looking into the future… confronting evil entities, women tend to generally chicken out).
Oh, thank God you totally saved that!

*runs, hides*
last edited on July 14, 2011 12:20PM

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