Are there dangerous ideas?

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This topic contains 112 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Unseen 2 days, 12 hours ago.

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  • #33371

    Davis
    Participant

    Additionally i argue that gender roles are highly flexible and we ought to seek equality and self actualization for all.

    An entirely obvious statement that seems to fly over a lot of people’s heads.

    #33372

    Unseen
    Participant

    Unseen although i mostly agree with you i don’t think it is fair to compare achievements in art and science unless it is the last few decades. Opps for women were so limited. I also think there may not be as many power hungry would-be CEO’s or heads of state but there are some. Opps again limited do to discrimination.

    jakelafort wrote:
    Unseen although i mostly agree with you i don’t think it is fair to compare achievements in art and science unless it is the last few decades. Opps for women were so limited. I also think there may not be as many power hungry would-be CEO’s or heads of state but there are some. Opps again limited do to discrimination.

    Let’s talk about discrimination. What are you talking about? Give me some examples.

    My position holds that many, perhaps most, of the differences in pay and gender distribution in various fields are simply due to individual inclinations and choices, and that those differences are usually traceable to physical differences (defined to include the brain) between the sexes, and that those differences can mostly be summarized in terms of hard wiring in the brain and the effects of testosterone and estrogen.

    Patriarchy isn’t the cause, it’s the effect. Studies show that we tend to prefer lower voices in our leaders. Even our female leaders tend to talk in the lower female register. Can you think of an important female leader in politics or business with a high-pitched voice. I can’t.

    People don’t always need opportunities. Talented people MAKE opportunities.

    The fact that so few women go into pure math may be due to not being hard-wired to find purely theoretical work interesting. After all, anyone who like me is a science documentary junkie knows that when the special is about math, you’re not going to see any world-class female mathematicians interviewed whereas if it’s about astronomy, a field requiring considerable depth in math but which has an actual real world subject matter, there are many leading female astronomers.

    Maybe music composition is similar to math in that respect. Dr. Paglia has stated her view that women generally have little interest in taking on large-scale projects, which certainly implies an explanation for why there are no major female-written symphonies and no female-built Sagrada Familia. There’s no shame in that. I can’t say I’ve ever taken on a project as huge as a symphony or an indiosyncratic cathedral, and if I’m supposed as a male to feel guilty about that…sorry, but I don’t.

    Here are the 10 college major fields with the most extemely lopsided gender distributions:

    Fields mostly male: construction management 93%, mechanical engineering 92%, electrical engineering 91%, physics 89%, aerospace engineering 87%, civil engineering and computer science (a tie) 85%.

    Fields mostly female: fashion design 95%, interior design 90%, social work and nursing (a tie) 88%, occupational therapy 86%.

    I don’t know about you, but looking these fields over, they seem to reflect pretty closely what I know about male and female inclinations and interest areas.

    #33373

    jakelafort
    Participant

    Unseen,

    Women have not emerged from the stranglehold of religion until recently-in some places still have not. Suffrage movement started in 19th century but rights in various nations begin around the first world war and for some nations much later. Rights to enter into a contract or to inherit are/were discriminatory. Attitudes towards women are/were as hysterical (wandering uterus) giddy, ditzy, incapable, flighty, emotional etc Having those characteristics is viewed as a negative in important/responsible fields. In strong muslim cultures we all know women are beaten/property, married off as children, given fewer or no opps for education. Katey bar the door on women. What are there over a billion muslims, no is it 2 billion? So a good percentage of women are/were discriminated against in a manner in which any achievement is impossible.

    I think you have indicated that women are as capable or have greater capability in language and yet we see many women have taken male nom de plume. Why? If the culture frowns on women entering certain professions or avocations it is difficult for women to break in. In the salons of the enlightenment there were women who sponsored the salons but few women were to my knowledge regular members. And those were presumably the most enlightened men. For the most part women until recently had narrowly defined gender roles that barred achievement in the arts.

    I think differences in pay are mostly a reflection of social status. As women get more responsible jobs the pay gap narrows because the social status narrows. That is my guess anyhow. I acknowledge that gender differences in distribution in part reflect male and female hormones and brains. It makes sense to me that inclinations and proclivities for various fields are not simply a matter of cultural norms. To deny the role of biology is folly. On the other hand it is pretty clear that women can do things that are traditionally viewed as male and the opposite is true. Women can work. Men can clean the home and rear the kids. During the second world war we saw men off to war and women filling the traditional male tough guy factory jobs.

    You say patriarchy isn’t the cause it is the effect. I give partial credit to that notion. I think the nature/nurture controversy is not sufficiently nuanced. I never read or hear how the environment or the culture is a result of nature. So while nature and nurture are inextricably linked it is also true that nature plays a role in producing the environment. Patriarchy is in part a result of the nature of men and women. The female politician who does not fit the pitch norm is Elizabeth Warren.

    It is really difficult to ascribe causation to gender distribution gaps is various jobs. It is in part as you think and in part gender roles and expectations.

    #33374

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    What the woke offer is a politically-biased social experiment with more dogma than data behind it.

    This is what I find.  It’s frustrating and depressing.  Their shell of cognitive dissonance does not want to break.

    It’s also depressing that they tend to put people off their ideas, with the way they act, when those ideas are generally agreeable.

    #33375

    Simon Paynton
    Participant

    I don’t think that gender roles per se are the problem.  After all, as you say @unseen, they are to some extent “natural” if that means “somewhat appropriate”.

    The problem is the oppression of females and devaluing of female roles.  The traditionally female roles are, statistically, lower paid than the traditionally male roles.  Oppression means that women are relatively unable to step outside those prescribed by society (and its norms), and engage in traditionally “male” things.  Males take the prestige and status, and deny them to women.

    As for math, science, computer programming, philosophy, leadership – I’ve never found that women lack ability in these areas, up close.

    #33377

    Unseen
    Participant
    Women have not emerged from the stranglehold of religion until recently-in some places still have not. Suffrage movement started in 19th century but rights in various nations begin around the first world war and for some nations much later. Rights to enter into a contract or to inherit are/were discriminatory. Attitudes towards women are/were as hysterical (wandering uterus) giddy, ditzy, incapable, flighty, emotional etc Having those characteristics is viewed as a negative in important/responsible fields. In strong muslim cultures we all know women are beaten/property, married off as children, given fewer or no opps for education. Katey bar the door on women. What are there over a billion muslims, no is it 2 billion? So a good percentage of women are/were discriminated against in a manner in which any achievement is impossible.

    My comments apply to the relatively unfettered women in western culture. I only want women who are free to choose to try to follow their inclinations. I don’t want a society where the awokened tell them to set those inclinations aside. Except for a few cult-like outliers, the churches in the Western world are not telling women “Do study astronomy, don’t study math. Do become a social worker, don’t become an architect.” You can’t seriously be thinking that women give up their mechanical engineering aspirations to become elementary school teachers solely due to social pressures from their church. LOL In today’s western world, women can pursue any academic field, and the evidence is those who do, because I can’t think of any field which is ALL male, can you? The reason more don’t isn’t because we don’t have a Vonnegutian Handicapper General tasked with making sure women and men are equally represented in every academic field.

    I think you have indicated that women are as capable or have greater capability in language and yet we see many women have taken male nom de plume. Why? If the culture frowns on women entering certain professions or avocations it is difficult for women to break in. In the salons of the enlightenment there were women who sponsored the salons but few women were to my knowledge regular members. And those were presumably the most enlightened men. For the most part women until recently had narrowly defined gender roles that barred achievement in the arts.

    It was you who asked me to stick to examples in recent decades, wasn’t it? Who are contemporary writers who felt they had to write under a male-sounding name? It’s not a lengthy list if you google it, which raises the question of whether their fear was justified, given the far lengthier list of successful female writers writing under their own names or under female-sounding pen names. There are particular fields where writing under a pen name sounding like the opposite sex does help, which is why a male romance writer may write under a name like Matilde Del Rio or some such. Better get the Handicapper General at work on that one, right?

    I think differences in pay are mostly a reflection of social status. As women get more responsible jobs the pay gap narrows because the social status narrows. That is my guess anyhow. I acknowledge that gender differences in distribution in part reflect male and female hormones and brains. It makes sense to me that inclinations and proclivities for various fields are not simply a matter of cultural norms. To deny the role of biology is folly. On the other hand it is pretty clear that women can do things that are traditionally viewed as male and the opposite is true. Women can work. Men can clean the home and rear the kids. During the second world war we saw men off to war and women filling the traditional male tough guy factory jobs.

    People overthink pay. What a company pays is very simply this: the employee’s value to the operation. An employee who gladly works overtime, gladly relocates if needed, takes very little time off for personal matters, and so on is paid more, and that accounts for most of the pay differential because men tend to be more valuable according to those standards. The remainder is probably due to us giving our sons better negotiating skills than their daughters. Giving them life skills isn’t social engineering, it’s parenting.

    You say patriarchy isn’t the cause it is the effect. I give partial credit to that notion. I think the nature/nurture controversy is not sufficiently nuanced. I never read or hear how the environment or the culture is a result of nature. So while nature and nurture are inextricably linked it is also true that nature plays a role in producing the environment. Patriarchy is in part a result of the nature of men and women. The female politician who does not fit the pitch norm is Elizabeth Warren.

    I made the point earlier that there have been matriarchies in the past which are no longer with us, so that there seems to be a survival value to patriarchies which matriarchies lacked. The patriarchies of today aren’t as overbearing as they once were. In fact, they hardly deserve the term “patriarchy” at all, and are more like male-dominated partnerships. Why male dominated? Men are more interested in power dynamics than women, and that’s because men and women are wired differently and have a different mix of hormones in their veins.

    Of course, I’m making generalizations which don’t necessarily apply to individual men and women or individual situations. Yes, there remain some cult-like churches which dictate gender relations, but most Christian faiths in the West aren’t going to shun a woman for majoring in math rather than becoming a homemaker.

    At the same time, thankfully there are still homemakers. Hopefully, there always will be.

    It is really difficult to ascribe causation to gender distribution gaps is various jobs. It is in part as you think and in part gender roles and expectations.

    There are no insurmountable “expectations.” And as I’ve just pointed out, the evidence is that there is no exclusively male or female fields of endeavor. There are female electrical engineers and there are male fashion designers, and the gender distribution doesn’t just reflect societal expectations, but normal interests in inclinations. Even those things we call “expectations” may simply be observations.

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by  Unseen.
    #33379

    Unseen
    Participant

    I don’t think that gender roles per se are the problem. After all, as you say @unseen, they are to some extent “natural” if that means “somewhat appropriate”. The problem is the oppression of females and devaluing of female roles. The traditionally female roles are, statistically, lower paid than the traditionally male roles. Oppression means that women are relatively unable to step outside those prescribed by society (and its norms), and engage in traditionally “male” things. Males take the prestige and status, and deny them to women. As for math, science, computer programming, philosophy, leadership – I’ve never found that women lack ability in these areas, up close.

    I think we throw around “traditional” as if it doesn’t have any nuance or subtext. That warriors tend to be men and caregivers so often are women isn’t a tradition, like going to work wearing business suits or driving on the right or left. We need a more neutral and descriptive term. There are practical reasons for gender roles these commonly observed (rather than “traditional”) differences having to do with the very real way the sexes are different.

    We value both sexes in the appropriate context and in a rational and/or practical way if you’re referring to remuneration. What’s fair will always be debatable. A good parent or elementary school teacher may be more valuable socially than an effective CEO, but an effective CEO maximizes what his or her company can pay its shareholders and employees, employees who may number in the hundreds or hundreds of thousands.

    You can always look at valuation from more than one angle. There is no single way of evaluating anything. One thing is for sure, though, paying parents CEO pay simply isn’t practically possible and parents are willing and often eager to play out their role for very little pay, so they have no negotiating power.

    #33902

    Unseen
    Participant

    Further evidence from a Harvard study that pay differentials between men and women doing the same job under the same rules are simply due to men and women making different choices driven by different values, not due to any sort of prejudice against women.

    They (the researchers) find that male train and bus drivers worked about 83 percent more overtime than their female colleagues and were twice as likely to accept an overtime shift—which pays time-and-a-half—on short notice and that around twice as many women as men never took overtime. The male workers took 48 percent fewer unpaid hours off under the Family Medical Leave Act each year. Female workers were more likely to take less desirable routes if it meant working fewer nights, weekends, and holidays. Parenthood turns out to be an important factor. Fathers were more likely than childless men to want the extra cash from overtime, and mothers were more likely to want time off than childless women.

    In other words, the difference in male and female earnings at the MBTA was explained by those “so-called ‘women’s choices,’” which Hartmann and Rose so easily dismissed.

    “The gap of $0.89 in our setting,” the authors concluded, “can be explained entirely by the fact that, while having the same choice sets in the workplace, women and men make different choices.”

    The “gender wage gap” is as real as unicorns and has been killed more times than Michael Myers. Yet politicians feel the need to genuflect before this phantom figure. President Obama’s White House was obsessed with that ridiculous 80-cent number. Let us substitute the quest for phantoms with serious research into the causes of relative incomes. (read the source for the above here)

    It seems to me that there is a way—a very extreme way—of doing away with this rather small differential, and that is to do away with masculinity and femininity and the roles associated with those states of being, which is something very few people really want.

    BTW, here is where you can find the actual study referred to above and what follows is the abstract to the study:

    Even in a unionized environment where work tasks are similar, hourly wages are identical, and tenure dictates promotions, female workers earn $0.89 on the male-worker dollar
    (weekly earnings). We use confidential administrative data on bus and train operators from
    the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA) to show that the weekly earnings
    gap can be explained by the workplace choices that women and men make. Women value
    time away from work and flexibility more than men, taking more unpaid time off using the
    Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and working fewer overtime hours than men. When
    overtime hours are scheduled three months in advance, men and women work a similar
    number of hours; but when those hours are offered at the last minute, men work nearly
    twice as many. When selecting work schedules, women try to avoid weekend, holiday, and
    split shifts more than men. To avoid unfavorable work times, women prioritize their schedules over route safety and select routes with a higher probability of accidents. Women are
    less likely than men to game the scheduling system by trading off work hours at regular
    wages for overtime hours at premium wages. These results suggest that some policies that
    increase workplace flexibility, like shift swapping and expanded cover lists, can reduce the
    gender earnings gap and disproportionately increase the well-being of female workers.

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