Reversing sexism in Hollywood

If I was a Hollywood producer, I would like to produce this kind of movie:

A woman is a crime-fighting lawyer. She is not a side-kick or a spin-off. It’s very clear the movie is about her, because the title of the movie is her name. She probably comes from a tough background. She learned to overcome it, however, by standing her ground and refusing to let the world run over her. She is inspired by her past to go into the justice system.

However, there’s a dark side: she’s has a terrible temper. Sometimes, when she is angry she gets very threatening and verbally abusive to the people in her life. She takes her stress out on the opposite sex. She picks up young, weak and naive men, has a fling, and then dumps them. She probably accomplishes this by saving them in court and then expecting their undying worship. That’s okay, however, because she’s very popular with the men, she’s very much a smooth anti-hero type. This beginning part of the movie should feature her in very commanding clothes, maybe with simpering male secretaries that purposely flash bits of bulges and butt cracks in their tight clothing to try to catch her attention. There must be some sort of gratuitous sex scene in which she is shown having sex with a man who moans and groans very loudly, and tells her how wonderful she is afterwards. In the morning, she tells him to get out and addresses him by a name that is not his own. The man should visibly look ashamed at himself for his wanton behavior as he walks out.

One day, she meets this really awesome guy. He’s a bit different from the others, because he talks back occasionally. That’s no problem though, because she does something for him (because he is weak and can’t do it for himself), and he obviously falls hard for her. She agonizes over giving up her high-rolling lifestyle and compromising her demanding job for him. Unlike all the other men she’s met, she is refreshed by his unsurpassed physical beauty and idealism. Thus, she also wants to “protect” him from the seedy things that she sees and works with in her job. The concept of commitment is threatening, but he remains understanding and infinitely supportive throughout. After all, she has the big important job, and he is just a pink collar worker doing something easy, meaningless, and idealistic. There should be a couple of scenes of happy couple-activities in which she does things like taking him out to dinner to places he cannot afford and sending massive bouquets of flowers to his work where all of his male co-workers (all conventionally attractive, perhaps with one minority for diversity and an overweight man for a witty non-sequitor fat joke) gossip about how they wish their girlfriends were as attentive and wonderful.

Eventually, the pressure to commit drives the main character to revert to her earlier ways, so she spectacularly screws up by verbally abusing her new love over something meaningless. He breaks into tears and leaves without a protest to go cry on the shoulder of his best male friend who cheers him up with shopping, food, or bad cinema. Eventually, the friend consoles him, telling him that she is just going through a rough time and that he needs to be as supportive as possible. Women just need space sometimes, he says, they get antsy when you want intimacy.

Meanwhile, our main character goes out to a bar. She proceeds to get really really drunk, and then throws bottles around, picks fights, and does other anti-social behavior because she is just so depressed by her lover leaving her. The other female friend accompanying her (whom must be a minority or ugly to signal her sick-kick status) spouts some cliche line about love. She is not convinced, of course, being stubborn, and goes about her life as if he had never wandered into it. She’s more cranky at work, and probably verbally abuses her male secretaries that still continue to throw themselves at her. One of them, in a moment of clarity, asks what is wrong. She tersely brushes off his concern and continues to do other anti-social behavior.

During this time, her male love has gone back to his simple job. He is visibly sad and depressed, and often sighs while he looks out the window. His co-workers notice that he is not receiving any flowers any more. They nag him until he spills admist tears. They cheer him up by berating him for making himself out to be the victim. If he wants something, he has to go get it! We are empowered men, they tell him, we take what we want. Encouraged, he drops everything (litterally), and rushes off to his lover’s work, but not before he returns home to change into his most fashionable and flattering outfit.

At her work, he awkwardly asks a male secretary where to find his girlfriend. He says that she is in a meeting, so he’ll have to wait. Knowingly, the secretaries gossip amongst themselves, and decide that she is too stubborn to come out on her own, because she won’t admit that she needs him. They call into her office, in the middle of a meeting, and tell her an important client is outside. The secretaries then all act busy and so they can watch the make-up.

She walks commandingly into the lobby, only to find her ex-boyfriend there.  Before she can angrily ask her secretaries what the meaning of this is, he confesses that he really loves her, and that he is dreadfully sorry for walking away and not being there for her. He throws himself at her and they make out to a rising orchestra. When she opens her mouth to say something, presumably sorry, he hushes her and says that he already knows. This should be accompanied by a happy giggle from him, and barely contained exclamations of glee from the onlooking secretaries.

Then, we cut scene to the wedding that happens sometime in the future. She is wearing a very sharply tailored outfit, and he is wearing designer clothes that display his body for the maximum effect. She should look visibly stunned by his beauty when he walks out in his wedding finery, and he should look bashful and adoring. They exchange wedding vows, and then they kiss.

The End

As far as casting goes, the lead female should be older and refined looking. She should not be overweight, but she doesn’t have to be physically perfect either. The appeal will be for her character, not her body, and she doesn’t have to do any gratuitous nude scenes. In the sex scene, we will make sure to cover up all but flashes of her moderately attractive arms and abdomen. The male lead must be young and idealistic looking. He needs to be physically perfect and willing to do at least full-frontal nudity. Other male extras must be just as young and physically perfect unless they are used as side-kicks or a token fat-dude for comedic value. Other female extras can be of all shapes and sizes and ages as long as they aren’t completely hideous and aren’t as dashing looking as the main actress.

When the movie goes to the editing studio, we will be sure to push for including as much shots of male sexuality as possible. Butts, packages, pecs, ass cleavage should always be put in at least every five minutes, especially on the characters that should come off as shallow and “bad” males. The lead should only be explicitly unclothed in sex scenes, but still extremely attractive at all times.

This reads like the conventional romantic comedy or drama. The only thing strange about it is that I have switched the genders. Even attempting to picture a movie like this being made is impossible. The very thought of men being objectified and shown as weak throughout an entire movie is objectionable and quite bizarre.

A thought-experiment such as this should illustrate my point clearly: the depiction of women by Hollywood is usually extremely sexist. If we cannot picture men in the roles typically given and played by women, it is clear that a double-standard still exists.

What also struck me is that if nay-sayers were to be believed, movies like this, an objectification of men, would be common. The argument is that the popular media is just as sexist towards men as women, especially when the intended audience is women.

That is false. In movies marketed towards men, women are objectified. In movies marketed towards women, women are objectified. I could write the same kind of movie proposal for an action movie, only it would feature a man being a prostitute and his suffering (whilst wearing little to nothing) as something sexual. He will be billed as powerful in a male way, while the female is powerful by keeping her clothes on and suffering in a very non-sexual way. I decided not too, only because really thinking about movies like Sin City that sexualize violence against women makes me physically sick.

In fact, I re-read my post, and I was struck by how my lead female comes off as an enormous bitch, and the male comes off as gay.

When men are objectified in the same manner that women are in the popular media–by being visibly worried about their appearance, physically and emotionally weak and expressive, or dressed in skimpy tight outfits–they are homosexual. When men are displayed as sexual they are for the gaze of other men. When do women get to look at men in a sexualized manner? Nowhere, really, unless it is a firmly “adult” risque performance like Chippendale’s. Even then, the we gossip about how the men displaying themselves for women might be gay.

Men fuck women. Subject verb object. In the media, men are always the subject. If by some bizarre chance a man is objectified, the subject of the piece is still another man. In short, men always express their sexuality, in the media, by the act of domination unless they are submitting to another man. Women always express their sexuality by submitting. These roles have never been reversed.

However, when the roles get too close to reversal, like I’ve displayed above, the woman is perceived as a complete and utter bitch for acting in the same fashion the male protagonist or hero acts. The thought that a man is submitting to a woman is so alien that we perceive that he is submitting to another man. He is a “faggot”. She is a “bitch”. Reverse the roles back to the norm and she is a “good girl” and he is a “handsome successful man”.

Talk about a double standard.

Next time someone tries to convince you that men are objectified in the popular media as much as women, please direct them to my thought experiment. The simple fact of the matter is that the roles have never been reversed, men are never asked to submit, and women’s “power”, as it is portrayed by the media, is almost always in acts of submission or in which the man never submits to her.

Nobody likes a bitch, nobody likes a faggot. Hollywood knows this, and the double standard persists. Same shit, different day.

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Posted on August 13, 2008, in Babies and Boners, Beauty Ideal, Feminism, Media, Penis Brain, Snark. Bookmark the permalink. 35 Comments.

  1. goingtomontreal

    First off–I would love to see this movie@
    Secondly– I find it very interesting that a simple role reversal shows the double standards in Hollywood.
    Finally– Not only would this movie be perceived as having gay male characters, it would only be marketed and thought of as a movie for gay men. Because heaven knows women don’t want to LOOK at sexualized men: only men can be the lookers. So no matter what, we lose: society would rather have teh gayz!!1! remain as the “lookers” rather than women.
    If that makes sense.

  2. When men are objectified in the same manner that women are in the popular media–by being visibly worried about their appearance, physically and emotionally weak and expressive

    Men in reality are not worried that much about their appearance. Nor are we emotionally weak or expressive.

    That’s why it comes off as making your male character appear gay. Because gay males are far more likely, in our society, to preen over their looks, and be emotionally expressive.

    Straight males are not. We don’t cry, let alone in public, we don’t usually spend more than 30 seconds on our appearance before leaving the house, etcetera.

    Portraying a woman like that is accurate to society, because women DO cry at movies, cry in public, cry over breakups, spend time on their appearance, etcetera.

    As far as physical weakness, men are, by nature (not socialisation) more physically strong than women. So it’s kind of silly to put that one in there.

  3. “Straight males are not. We don’t cry, let alone in public, “

    Speak for yourself, buddy. I’m straight and (*gasp*) emotionally expressive. The only reason most men aren’t is because they’ve been taught to be afraid to. Thus, IMHO, most men never get to express their full range of emotions, and therefore never afford themselves the golden opportunity to be completely human. As far as physical strength (and size for that matter) males and females of our species enjoy a smaller disparity than any other species (primate or otherwise) on the planet. Furthermore, physical strength has lost its relevance in our modern society. We use our brains much more than our brawn these days.

    The traditional definition of “man”hood is obsolete. We need to rethink our definition of what it means to be a man.

  4. Speak for yourself, buddy. I’m straight and (*gasp*) emotionally

    I was speaking in general.

    If you go to a sad movie, chances are, none of the men in the audience will cry.

    The only reason most men aren’t is because they’ve been taught to be afraid to.

    I respectfully disagree.

    Thus, IMHO, most men never get to express their full range of emotions, and therefore never afford themselves the golden opportunity to be completely human.

    That’s sort of insulting, sounds like you’re implying that somehow, men who don’t do what you think is best are “incomplete”.

    As far as physical strength (and size for that matter) males and females of our species enjoy a smaller disparity than any other species (primate or otherwise) on the planet. Furthermore, physical strength has lost its relevance in our modern society. We use our brains much more than our brawn these days.

    That’s fine and all, but that doesn’t change that males ARE more physically powerful than women.

    If that weren’t the case, forcible rape wouldn’t carry with it nearly as much threat, because women could have the strength and size to fend off the attacker.

    That’s why forcible rape is such a problem, because with his superior strength, a man can pretty much do such a thing unopposed.

    The traditional definition of “man”hood is obsolete. We need to rethink our definition of what it means to be a man.

    That’s just as bad as telling people there is only one definition. It’s not up to “we” to define it, I like how I am, and don’t need anyone telling me to “redefine” myself.

  5. @D – what if I told you that my male friend cried more in a movie than I did, and that he spends more on hair products than I. Is he gay? Am I failing at being a woman by not giving a shit about hair products?

    Generalities are offensive because there are so many exceptions that deviations from this artificial norm are ostracized and demonized. Whether or not men cry at movies, and some do, the definition of the default man as someone who does not cry is extremely harmful to all of those who would fall outside that imposed norm, and those that squash their personality to avoid ostracization.

    So, I really don’t give a damn if most men wouldn’t cry at movies without enforced gender norms. Those gender norms exist, and so anyone that claims that their actions are completely free is incorrect, and anyone that says that they know what men are like and not like is lying and speaking more about what they think men are rather than what men really are.

  6. @D – what if I told you that my male friend cried more in a movie than I did, and that he spends more on hair products than I. Is he gay? Am I failing at being a woman by not giving a shit about hair products?

    You’re misunderstanding me a little. I’m not saying someone is a “bad” woman because they don’t preen a lot, I’m just saying it’s more socially common in our society for women and gay males to spend more time/money on their clothing/appearance than straight men do.

    Whether or not men cry at movies, and some do, the definition of the default man as someone who does not cry is extremely harmful to all of those who would fall outside that imposed norm, and those that squash their personality to avoid ostracization.

    Well, there’s no reason for a male to burst into tears at a movie. I can’t see the helpfulness of it.

    Those gender norms exist, and so anyone that claims that their actions are completely free is incorrect

    Not necessarily. Socialisation can account for some, but not all. It’s one thing to feel a strong impulse to shed tears over something, and quash it. It’s another thing entirely to not feel that at all. Is it socialisation that I can go through the worst breakup of my entire life, with the person I cared the most about, and be unhappy about it, but not have any desire to do emotional expression of it?

    and anyone that says that they know what men are like and not like is lying and speaking more about what they think men are rather than what men really are.

    I hate to throw this snark out: But even feminists? I notice a lot of feminists see fit to say they know what men are like, what they are not like, and what they should be like.

  7. I’m just saying it’s more socially common in our society for women and gay males to spend more time/money on their clothing/appearance than straight men do.

    This statement is meaningless in the context of our discussion. Is this natural? Is it good or bad? If this statement implies no conclusion, than it is meaningless.

    Well, there’s no reason for a male to burst into tears at a movie. I can’t see the helpfulness of it.

    Expressing emotion is healthy. The only reason I could think of not crying when you feel sad or a need to cry is the perception that crying is a weakness. It is the perception, not the need to cry, that is in error. Emotional Intelligence is highly tied to the ability to recognize your own emotions, the emotions of others, and display them in helpful manners. Repressing emotions skews our entire mental state. If someone feels the need to cry in a movie, I can think of no reason why they should not. However, I can think of plenty of reasons why the repressing of this need to emotional expression is unhealthy.

    Not necessarily. Socialization can account for some, but not all.

    Prove it. I have yet to see any good studies on emotion and the expressions thereof that infer that the need for emotional expression is higher in females and lower in males naturally. Nor do I think I ever will, considering that both male and female hormones produce emotional states rather than repress them. I have my doubts as to whether or not no emotional response to a messy breakup with someone you truly cared about is healthy or natural. Although I am of the opinion that the numbness that follows especially trying events is, in fact, a emotional response, not the repression of them. Although someone that is able to carry on after a tragedy with absolutely no change in their mental state probably isn’t human.

    But even feminists? I notice a lot of feminists see fit to say they know what men are like, what they are not like, and what they should be like.

    This blog isn’t about all feminists, it’s about my feminism. My feminism is very much about non-determinism, or that the natural state of the genders is unknowable in within the present context of societal pressures and roles. I’ll ask you to stop attacking feminism.

  8. This statement is meaningless in the context of our discussion. Is this natural? Is it good or bad? If this statement implies no conclusion, than it is meaningless.

    I made it, because you were expressing that by not spending a lot, you were somehow “bad” at being female. I was just saying I was pointing it out, not justifying it.

    Expressing emotion is healthy. The only reason I could think of not crying when you feel sad or a need to cry is the perception that crying is a weakness.

    Some people are less emotional than others. Some cry at the drop of a hat, some are unshakable. A “healthy” amount of emotion expressed is subjective to the person, really.

    Prove it. I have yet to see any good studies on emotion and the expressions thereof that infer that the need for emotional expression is higher in females and lower in males naturally. Nor do I think I ever will, considering that both male and female hormones produce emotional states rather than repress them.

    Well, they produce emotions, but, well, different ones.

    I’ve known both MTF and FTM transpeople. The FTM noticed when they went on their T, that they had a shorter temper, and got irritated more often. The MTF noticed more strength in their stereotypically “feminine” emotions, such as crying more often.

    I have my doubts as to whether or not no emotional response to a messy breakup with someone you truly cared about is healthy or natural.

    Well, if it helps give perspective, I also watched my father die in my living room when I was younger, and didn’t cry about it.

    The response isn’t there. I can be aware of a situation being “bad”, it just doesn’t give me as much effect as it might someone else. That’s why I say it’s not always purely socialisation, as the drive itself isn’t there.

    Although someone that is able to carry on after a tragedy with absolutely no change in their mental state probably isn’t human.

    Well, is it really that bad that someone can shake off a tragedy with no ill effects? I would think completely shrugging it off and moving on would be a good thing, no?

    This blog isn’t about all feminists, it’s about my feminism. My feminism is very much about non-determinism, or that the natural state of the genders is unknowable in within the present context of societal pressures and roles. I’ll ask you to stop attacking feminism.

    It wasn’t an attack. You stated that “anyone that says that they know what men are like and not like is lying and speaking more about what they think men are rather than what men really are.”

    And I pointed out, that, generally feminists tend to say they know what men are or are not, and also what they SHOULD be. That’s not an attack, it’s just an observation.

    I wanted to know if your opinion that anyone who says they know what men are is just projecting an opinion, not truth, applied also to feminists.

  9. Some people are less emotional than others. Some cry at the drop of a hat, some are unshakable. A “healthy” amount of emotion expressed is subjective to the person, really.

    This is not debatable, nor am I negating this statement. A “healthy” amount of emotion, however, is always some sort of emotion. There is not a single person on the planet that has never felt emotion, and never felt the need to express it.

    I’ve known both MTF and FTM transpeople. The FTM noticed when they went on their T, that they had a shorter temper, and got irritated more often. The MTF noticed more strength in their stereotypically “feminine” emotions, such as crying more often.

    So much of the common knowledge of testosterone and estrogen is wrong that I feel comfortable in saying that it is not uncommon that the shift in mental states when transitioning between male and female cannot be complete a result of hormones and not a result of a shifting perception of one’s social role.

    I would think completely shrugging it off and moving on would be a good thing, no?

    Completely shrugging it off is not healthy. Healing has a lot more to do with acceptance than denial.

    I wanted to know if your opinion that anyone who says they know what men are is just projecting an opinion, not truth, applied also to feminists.

    I am not all feminists. I cannot speak for them, nor can I determine which subset of feminism you are speaking of. I am not the gatekeeper to feminism. I am telling you what I think. My statement is that gender is meaningless outside of generalities and social constructs.

  10. This is not debatable, nor am I negating this statement. A “healthy” amount of emotion, however, is always some sort of emotion. There is not a single person on the planet that has never felt emotion, and never felt the need to express it.

    I just mean, some people never feel a need to express it, nor a drive to.

    So much of the common knowledge of testosterone and estrogen is wrong that I feel comfortable in saying that it is not uncommon that the shift in mental states when transitioning between male and female cannot be complete a result of hormones and not a result of a shifting perception of one’s social role.

    Well, I’m aware a lot of complex things are involved, but many other stories, blogs, journals, etcetera of transpeople report very similar things.

    It’s not that they feel it’s alright to express crying, for instance, but that they can’t help themselves when it comes to it.

    Completely shrugging it off is not healthy. Healing has a lot more to do with acceptance than denial.

    It’s not necessarily denial. Denial is “that didn’t really happen”. Saying “Yes, that happened, and that’s life” and going on isn’t bad, is it?

    I am not all feminists. I cannot speak for them, nor can I determine which subset of feminism you are speaking of. I am not the gatekeeper to feminism. I am telling you what I think. My statement is that gender is meaningless outside of generalities and social constructs.

    I never said you were. Just, as I read about, it seems pretty common that a lot of feminists do seem ready to define men in a way they want to define them. I’ve seen you do it as well.

    Though, you seem to believe that there is NO biological component to gender at all? If that’s the case, that’s a little disingenuous, I’d think.

  11. @D – I sense that we are going around in circles, and that debate on these issues, issues which I cannot identify, is fruitless. In other words, I’ve lost interest because I cannot see any purpose or gains, and the direction of our conversation is going in a completely different direction than the original post. If you wish to continue this conversation, I’d prefer it was not here.

  12. Fair enough. Though, I can’t really continue it unless you end up making a post where it fits better, now can I? :P

  13. d – i have no interest in defining your masculinity. To clarify (sorry I didn’t): When I say we need to define masculinity, perhaps I should have worded it as we each need to define our own masculinity, rather than falling in lock-step with gender norms. The incompleteness I spoke of was not to imply that one is subhuman unless they express their full range of emotions, but that I believe that they are missing out on what personal humanity is all about. I feel if that someone feels restricted by traditional gender roles, they should tell society where they can stick it. I did, and I feel much better about myself having done it. If you don’t mind being caged by someone else’s rules, more power to you.

  14. rather than falling in lock-step with gender norms.

    Again, if I like how those “norms” set things up for men, I see no reason to challenge or change them, just because YOU don’t like them.

    but that I believe that they are missing out on what personal humanity is all about.

    As I expressed to Jenn, what is “complete” or “full” is subjective.

    If you don’t mind being caged by someone else’s rules, more power to you.

    Again, just because YOU don’t like it, doesn’t mean it isn’t fine for someone else. It’s not “caged” to most men, because most men don’t need to cry at the drop of a hat, and go around wanting to hug everyone all the time.

  15. @ D – you’re not comprehending what we are saying. If, as you say, it is perfectly natural for you to behave in a manner that, coincidentally, sticks very close to male gender norms, than why do these norms have to exist? Are you arguing that norms don’t exist? If they do exist, are they not oppressive? Do not fads and trends influence the perception of self?

    Thus, if it is natural that most men do not need to cry or express emotion, than there would need to be no pressure to repress emotion if you are a man. I don’t think either syndicalist702 or I is arguing that men not crying is wrong, and that all men need to blubber at every emotional movie. That’s absurd. I don’t even blubber at all but the most depressing of movies, and I’m a card-toting female. There’s nothing wrong with that. What is wrong is the social forces that attach “good” and “bad” to male expressions on completely arbitrary social trends that differ entirely from the opposite gender.

    Thus, not only are the social forces that emphasize only one mode of masculinity harmful, they are unnecessary.

  16. @ D – you’re not comprehending what we are saying. If, as you say, it is perfectly natural for you to behave in a manner that, coincidentally, sticks very close to male gender norms, than why do these norms have to exist? Are you arguing that norms don’t exist? If they do exist, are they not oppressive? Do not fads and trends influence the perception of self?

    I think the difference is in how we see it. They’re “norms” because they’re common. Did it become a “norm” because the majority of males exhibited it, ergo, it became what was considered to be the standard of masculinity? Probably.

    Though, you seem to be arguing from a position that a majority of males never exhibited it, and it was created enforced by some secret cabal who said “This is how men should act”, and then men started acting that way.

    Regardless, no, I don’t find it oppressive. I see no need to change myself or alter the way I see/experience things, just because someone else thinks it’s limiting, when I do not.

    As far as fads and trends, sure, but only to an extent. People are generally going to be who they’re going to be. I’ve had a lot of societal pressures leaned on me over the years, and I’m still the same asshole, with the same convictions, the same morals, and the same general sense of self I always had.

    Despite the pressures of “the conquest”, I still find no appeal in casual sex, despite being bombarded with stereotypes of the “cheating dog”, I find infidelity absolutely reprehensible, and have never done it, despite the “drinking is cool” pressure, I rarely ever have alcohol, and usually only a single beer when the random craving hits, etcetera.

    Sure, some people can be swayed by society, but I tend to think they were inclined to do that anyway.

    Like… Do people kill people because they played Grand Theft Auto, or were they already inclined to violence in the first place? I’d tend to think they were already bent, and were just waiting for something to snap them.

    Thus, if it is natural that most men do not need to cry or express emotion, than there would need to be no pressure to repress emotion if you are a man.

    I don’t feel any such pressure. The great majority of men do not. The ones who, for whatever reason, don’t fit the standard, feel said pressure. Does that suddenly mean the ones who DO fit it, only fit it because they are forced to be “limited” by society?

    In my opinion, no. I believe men are the way we are, by and large, simply because we are. Occasionally one isn’t. That doesn’t mean society makes the rest of us the way we are, just that it leans on the few who aren’t to match.

    Take homosexuality for instance. If we apply the same argument you’re using, that would mean all heterosexuals are just being societally forced into heterosexuality, which, obviously is false, as I don’t think we’d evolve this far as a species that didn’t have an inherent reproduction setup.

    Yet, you still occasionally get a homosexual, much the same as you occasionally get a male that has less control over his emotions, or has more potent ones than his peers.

    I don’t think either syndicalist702 or I is arguing that men not crying is wrong, and that all men need to blubber at every emotional movie. That’s absurd.

    He seems to be coming from a place where he thinks men not crying IS wrong, or at least damaged/limited/incomplete. At least, that’s what I take from it.

    What is wrong is the social forces that attach “good” and “bad” to male expressions on completely arbitrary social trends that differ entirely from the opposite gender.

    Thus, not only are the social forces that emphasize only one mode of masculinity harmful, they are unnecessary.

    That’s a matter of opinion, though.

    It’s also slightly beyond (no offense) the purview of feminism.

    I would assume you wouldn’t want men attempting to define or redefine to you, what it means (or should mean) to be a woman, correct? It’s much the same here.

    If someone has no experience BEING said gender, one really can’t say with any true certainty if something is bad or harmful for that gender, or how it feels to be that gender, or how societal pressures or lack thereof affect said gender.

    If this isn’t making sense, I blame the whole “4:28 AM” part of my post.

  17. Did it become a “norm” because the majority of males exhibited it, ergo, it became what was considered to be the standard of masculinity? Probably.

    Here I have my doubts. Did everyone prefer women with shaved legs because women just naturally had hairless legs? Do men hate pink because everyone with a penis hates pink and it’s natural? (the last one is false, by the way, Indian men think pink is masculine and orange is feminine). Until there is significant evidence pointing to the actual human genome, particularly the parts dealing with the sex chromosomes, the easiest explanation for most gender differences (beside the penis vs vagina deal) is socialization.

    Though, you seem to be arguing from a position that a majority of males never exhibited it, and it was created enforced by some secret cabal.

    There is no secret cabal, no monolithic hierarchical oppressive regime. These are social forces so ingrained on our mental state that we are incapable of telling whether or not they are natural. Social forces are enforced or denied by nobodies, by teachers, by parents, by children, by the media, by advertising, by our friends, by books. Anything human or created by humans displays these social forces. The position you think I seem to be arguing from is incorrect. I have no desire, however, to debate the origins of social forces, simply because the origins of each are so convoluted and broken that such a lengthy historical topic is beyond the scopes of anything but something like my philosophy thesis.

    Regardless, no, I don’t find it oppressive. I see no need to change myself or alter the way I see/experience things, just because someone else thinks it’s limiting, when I do not.

    I am not telling you to change anything. I am saying that the forces that say “men or women do X and not Y” are outdated, irrelevant, and probably partially unnatural. And if they aren’t the latter, then the removal of them would make no difference. I have stated this point clearly at least three times above by now. If you wish to paint me as some tyrant that would tell you how to live your life properly than it is easy to disprove what I say here. But that is not way I say at all, and I tire of untrue accusations of my supposed tyranny.

    As far as fads and trends, sure, but only to an extent. People are generally going to be who they’re going to be. I’ve had a lot of societal pressures leaned on me over the years, and I’m still the same asshole, with the same convictions, the same morals, and the same general sense of self I always had.

    That extent probably varies person by person. Why do some girls make themselves throw up to lose weight? Is this natural? Would they do it without the social pressure to be thin? Why do some men think that displays of homosexuality are obscene and wrong whilst heterosexual displays are good? Is this natural? Would they feel this way without the social pressure that equates “fag” with bad?

    Despite the pressures of “the conquest”, I still find no appeal in casual sex, despite being bombarded with stereotypes of the “cheating dog”, I find infidelity absolutely reprehensible, and have never done it, despite the “drinking is cool” pressure, I rarely ever have alcohol, and usually only a single beer when the random craving hits, etcetera.

    I am not saying that we are mindless and incapable of free will. My point is that much of what we think is free will might be influenced by social pressures although we might resist others. And there are opposing social pressures, you know. Depending on who you spend time with, casual sex is good or bad, and getting completely shit-faced might be a weekend pasttime or completely abhorrent. Social forces are not monolithic. They are often hypocritical and illogical. Such as the basic Good-girl/whore dichotomy, in which girls are asked to be sexy, but not sexual. These social forces do not originate from the same place, nor do they make sense together. Which is probably why so much of what humans do is so utterly illogical.

    I don’t feel any such pressure. The great majority of men do not.

    If your proposition is that social pressures are irrelevant or non-existent, or that there is some special breed of humanity that is immune whilst others turn into mindless status-quo automatons, then we’re not going to have any common ground for further argumentation.

    He seems to be coming from a place where he thinks men not crying IS wrong, or at least damaged/limited/incomplete.

    Men who never cry, ever, or even feel the need to, probably have emotional issues. Same with women that never feel they need to hit something. Just because the formula says that women aren’t violent and men don’t cry doesn’t mean that we both aren’t human and apt to do things like get violently angry or depressingly melancholy. Regular emotions are never absent or omnipresent, that’s a sign of mental problems. Rather, they vary in their intensity and occurrence. That’s my point.

    That’s a matter of opinion, though.

    If you really think that there is no value statement inherent in social norms, that fat isn’t deemed ugly, pink isn’t bad for men to wear, homosexuals aren’t demonized, then we have absolutely no common ground to speak on.

    It’s also slightly beyond (no offense) the purview of feminism.

    Feminism is the bifocals of my philosophical musings. The foundations thereof, also, are that gender norms can be harmful. This should be common knowledge. If we disagree on the usefulness of feminism, then, again, we don’t have any common ground and further argumentation will be completely circular and aimless.

    I would assume you wouldn’t want men attempting to define or redefine to you, what it means (or should mean) to be a woman, correct? It’s much the same here.

    Wrong tense. I don’t want men defining me now, which they already do, and as the usual rulers of this society, have been the enforcers of social norms far more than women for far longer. And I’m not defining men. I’m attempting to say that gender is undefinable and almost meaningless outside the question of reproduction (and sometimes, meaningless even in that context too). Social norms say that “men are X, and women are Y”. I say not only are the above statements incorrect, they are meaningless. But I am not going to say, in the absence of definitions, that “men are now W and women are now Z”. No, I’d say “we’re all human, and please stop acting like assholes”.

    If someone has no experience BEING said gender, one really can’t say with any true certainty if something is bad or harmful for that gender, or how it feels to be that gender, or how societal pressures or lack thereof affect said gender.

    Men are not separate species from women. We’re both human, and it’s about damn time someone started saying “gee, we have an awful lot in common, don’t we?” My point is also that my state of BEING female is only relevant in the context of completely unnatural social norms that caused me to do things like starve myself when I was 13, or want boob implants at 17, or wish for a steady boyfriend at 9 before I even knew what the hell desire or love was. My real state is human. My social state is that of a woman. My sex is female, which is probably XX (or XXX, XXXX, XXXXX, XXY, or XXYY, which makes determining my sex as one of two possibilities fairly absurd). I’m genetically (probably) a woman, I’m socially a female, I’m most definitely human. Out of all of those identifiers, it should be the last one that matters most, not least.

  18. Hey Jenn,

    I’m sure I’ve visited here before but I’m not sure why you were not immediately added to my blogroll. Your blog is awesome. I love this idea for a movie. It would be really interesting to see peoples reaction to a completel reversal of the shit we see in malestream movies on a daily basis. Nice work.

  19. @Allecto – Aw, thanks. I think that the uproar if such a movie was actually produced would be enormously funny in a very dark way.

  20. Here I have my doubts. Did everyone prefer women with shaved legs because women just naturally had hairless legs? Do men hate pink because everyone with a penis hates pink and it’s natural? (the last one is false, by the way, Indian men think pink is masculine and orange is feminine). Until there is significant evidence pointing to the actual human genome, particularly the parts dealing with the sex chromosomes, the easiest explanation for most gender differences (beside the penis vs vagina deal) is socialization.

    Well, some things can be attributed to socialisation, sure. I mean, why do women prefer clean-shaven men? Obviously, the natural state is a beard, but the vast majority of women don’t find bearded men attractive. I happen to dislike pink because it’s not blue. (I don’t like orange, either, for that matter. :P) Though, my favorite color isn’t really socialisation, because I don’t wear a lot of blue (I primarily wear dark browns and greens), I just happen to like to have blue things.

    If that makes sense. I just think in our culture, more pastel colors are considered feminine, not necessarily just pink.

    I am not telling you to change anything. I am saying that the forces that say “men or women do X and not Y” are outdated, irrelevant, and probably partially unnatural.

    Oh, I never said you were. Some of my statements are half in reference to syndicalist, wherein he implied that the way men are is insufficient, or needs alterations.

    And if they aren’t the latter, then the removal of them would make no difference.

    Well, from that standpoint, so would leaving them be, if you think about it.

    That extent probably varies person by person. Why do some girls make themselves throw up to lose weight? Is this natural? Would they do it without the social pressure to be thin? Why do some men think that displays of homosexuality are obscene and wrong whilst heterosexual displays are good? Is this natural? Would they feel this way without the social pressure that equates “fag” with bad?

    Well, as for anorexics, one could also argue is it all societal pressure, or is it a mentally ill or unstable person, just being pushed that extra bit by those pressures? If it were solely the pressure, all women would be puking up their meals, and they aren’t, obviously.

    As far as the displays of sexuality, I’d say it’s partially because people don’t want to see things they don’t have an interest in. Even women are guilty of it. I’m certain plenty of women wouldn’t want to see overt homosexual displays of either gender. Then, some people simply don’t like public displays of ANY sexuality. (I don’t. PDA bothers me.)

    I am not saying that we are mindless and incapable of free will. My point is that much of what we think is free will might be influenced by social pressures although we might resist others. And there are opposing social pressures, you know. Depending on who you spend time with, casual sex is good or bad, and getting completely shit-faced might be a weekend pasttime or completely abhorrent.

    Oh, I know that. But, to see it like I do, assume a scale. Some people are -100 to +100, some are -10/+10, some are -1/+1. In other words, everyone starts at the center, and some people will sway more easily to pressure than others, or simply take less pressure TO sway, but in general, people will still maintain the balance they would have already had.

    If your proposition is that social pressures are irrelevant or non-existent, or that there is some special breed of humanity that is immune whilst others turn into mindless status-quo automatons, then we’re not going to have any common ground for further argumentation.

    No, what I meant was: The majority of men don’t feel a pressure to be stoic, we don’t feel anyone exerting upon us that we HAVE TO be such a way. The only ones who do are the ones who aren’t. Most of us just are this way.

    As in, if that pressure is there, it’s not being focused on us, because it’s not necessary to.

    Men who never cry, ever, or even feel the need to, probably have emotional issues. Same with women that never feel they need to hit something. Just because the formula says that women aren’t violent and men don’t cry doesn’t mean that we both aren’t human and apt to do things like get violently angry or depressingly melancholy. Regular emotions are never absent or omnipresent, that’s a sign of mental problems. Rather, they vary in their intensity and occurrence. That’s my point.

    Well, I don’t think I have emotional issues. I function quite fine, and never feel a need to shed tears, and honestly can’t recall if I ever have. I don’t believe so.

    It’s a funny place, because I notice a lot of feminists almost rely on the argument that “men are more violent”, but then turn around and say that nobody is more prone to anything based on gender.

    I am prone to melancholia, but that doesn’t mean you’ll ever notice it, see it, or find any visual evidence of it.

    That, and I won’t lie, I wanted an excuse to say “melancholia”.

    I don’t consider my absence of most major emotions to be mental problems, I just consider it part of who I am, like my eye or hair color.

    If you really think that there is no value statement inherent in social norms, that fat isn’t deemed ugly, pink isn’t bad for men to wear, homosexuals aren’t demonized, then we have absolutely no common ground to speak on.

    I was speaking of the “one mode of masculinity is harmful” statement. Unless you have experienced life as a man, and can determine then, personally, that this is or isn’t harmful, it becomes a matter of opinion. Make more sense?

    Feminism is the bifocals of my philosophical musings. The foundations thereof, also, are that gender norms can be harmful.

    I’m aware, but I was speaking in reference to defining what masculinity should mean. That is up to men, just as defining what femininity means should be up to women.

    Men are not separate species from women. We’re both human, and it’s about damn time someone started saying “gee, we have an awful lot in common, don’t we?”

    No, we are not separate species, but we each tend to perceive the world and it’s pressures in vastly different ways, as well as being subjected to vastly different stimuli and pressures.

    That’s what I mean.

    Though, I don’t really see myself having much in common with anyone.

    My point is also that my state of BEING female is only relevant in the context of completely unnatural social norms that caused me to do things like starve myself when I was 13, or want boob implants at 17, or wish for a steady boyfriend at 9 before I even knew what the hell desire or love was.

    See, and you can determine if you find those to be harmful or not. That would be accurate. But unless you’ve ever been a man, you can only offer opinion, as the things presented to men are much different than those presented to women.

    Women might see implants as a valid way to attract a mate, men see steroids.

    Though, as far as wishing for a significant other, that’s not something specific to either gender, but both. Men and women are both taught that love is “good”, relationships are “good”, etcetera.

    In terms of kicking away social norms, that’s my major victory, that I’m sure, to you, would sound incredibly bad. Getting past the ingrained conditioning that says “men need women/men should have a woman/men aren’t important without a woman/life is meaningless without a woman”. Realizing that no, no I don’t need one, unless I wanted to reproduce (which I don’t), which is the only thing I can’t do without one.

    Every time I’ve expressed that, I’ve been attacked, so, I don’t fault you for doing so, if you do. I’m aware it sounds bad, but I’ve no other softer way to express it. That’s the biggest social conditioning that I’ve gotten rid of. Probably the only one that really affected me in serious ways.

    For a long time, I felt like I was supposed to have a girlfriend, and wanted one, all the damn time, despite the fact that every attempt was hideous and awful. Took a fairly long time to sit back and really teach myself that I didn’t. That pressure is omnipresent, and one of the most potent we have in society, I think. Because it’s still there, even when I’ve gotten rid of most of it, and I still catch myself with it once in a while.

    My social state is that of a woman. My sex is female, which is probably XX (or XXX, XXXX, XXXXX, XXY, or XXYY, which makes determining my sex as one of two possibilities fairly absurd).

    Well, the genetic abnormalities of extra chromosomes are kind of rare, and usually exhibit themselves in other ways, as a lot of women with an extra have wildly affected menstrual cycles, or none at all, or other issues.

    The reason it’s one of two possibilities, is because in general, we have male and female. Genetic damage doesn’t count as a new gender. I know that sounds harsh, but errors in transcription are what they amount to.

    I’m genetically (probably) a woman, I’m socially a female, I’m most definitely human. Out of all of those identifiers, it should be the last one that matters most, not least.

    Well, what’s your opinion on feminists who think that way, but when it comes to men, choose not to apply that same definition, and instead class us solely as “men”, and then apply various negative connotations to it?

    Also, as an aside, I used to rather strongly dislike you, yet I find myself continually coming back here to have long-winded discussions. It doesn’t mean we’re picking out curtains or anything. It’s about the closest I come to complimenting, to say you have good debate skills. :P

  21. Though, my favorite color isn’t really socialization, because I don’t wear a lot of blue (I primarily wear dark browns and greens), I just happen to like to have blue things.

    I submit in the natural state of things, that preferences of anything, even sexual identity or gender identity, would be as meaningless as your favorite color. That would be because things like favorite colors are not all that enforced by things like social norms, mostly, and choosing an unpopular color isn’t going to make people treat you differently. My point is that all preferences should be as meaningless and free as your favorite color.

    Totally unrelated, but it’s “socialization”, not “socialisation”. Sorry, I’m a bit of a spelling fiend when it comes to technical terms.

    Oh, I never said you were. Some of my statements are half in reference to syndicalist, wherein he implied that the way men are is insufficient, or needs alterations.

    Unless syndicalist comes back, I cannot presume to speak for him (and he should come back, I like debating with many people as long as they are respectful). My personal opinion is that it is useful to talk to anyone that falls far outside the default definition of “normal” to get a full understanding about how stupid averages are and how diverse humanity truly is. Regardless of how mundane my upbringing was, and it was fairly unexciting compared to some, I like to hear personal bits from others with extreme upbringings or personalities to glean a more complete view of humanity. That is not to say that someone that falls naturally (which is incredibly hard to determine, as I feel I have established) into the definition of “average” is stupid or bad. Merely that as an average person (which is usually, in America, taken to be a white heterosexual middle-class person, usually male), insights to what is not average are often offensive and completely wrong. Whereas, someone on the fringes of society probably not only has a better view of the fringes, they probably know as much as “averageness” than an average person (or at least more likely to know of average than average folks are to know of them). This is so because the average lifestyle is presented, usually to the total exclusion of others, in things like the media endlessly every day. As far as the popular media goes, people like me (fluid sexuality, radical political leanings that don’t include Che or Marx or Rand) don’t exist. It’s not absurd to assume that I have a better understanding of average people than they do of me. All I have to do to glean a basic understanding of the norm is turn on the television or read a book. For them to know me, they first have to realize that what I am is even possible to be, accept it, and then seek knowledge. This process is much rarer than an unusual person knowing what he or she is not.

    For feminists and other identity movements, this phenomenon is known as a large part of privilege that is usually deemed “invisibility”. In short, if I was straight it would be very easy for me to find pornography or romance novels that appeal to me. Since I am not, my selection is extremely narrow. Not only that, I might have to get my rocks off to books and medias that assume people like me don’t exist. It is far far more common for gay people to have straight sex than it is for straight people to have gay sex. This is because gay people see straight sex everywhere, and it is normal. Straight people have to look for gay sex, if they even acknowledge it exists in the first place, and it is considered abnormal or even abhorrent. What needs alteration in this equation is how pushed out of the human narrative “abnormal” humanity is, like homosexuality, disabledness, fatness, age, color, and extreme poverty. When you really look at it, the number of people that are normal as deemed by popular culture are actually a minority to those that are “abnormal”. Which is bizarre, because when I turn on the television all I see is the same shit about the same skinny white middle-class people. It’s about time that the so-called majority realizes that their “majority” status is false, and that their ignorance of the rest of the world is damaging everyone’s comprehension of humanity.

    Well, from that standpoint, so would leaving them be, if you think about it.

    If social norms are damaging, and you have agreed that they are to some (although I propose they are to all in some fashion or another, but that doesn’t alter my point), then the removal of them is ultimately better than the enforcement and preservation of them. I hope I adequately explained the theory behind that above.

    Well, as for anorexics, one could also argue is it all societal pressure, or is it a mentally ill or unstable person, just being pushed that extra bit by those pressures? If it were solely the pressure, all women would be puking up their meals, and they aren’t, obviously.

    It’s a variety of factors: exposure, self-esteem (which is influenced by so many things), parents, friends, class, race… that simply saying that one is genetically prepossessed to do harmful things to themselves, or others, in the name of social norms is false. The only genetic propensity that would be relevant would be either extremely low intelligence or sociopathy, neither of which are problems of the majority of those that submit to social pressures. What is the problem, therefore, is the unique mix of social pressures that one encounters. That is more society than genetics, you see. While Anne might watch the same television shows as Amy, an anorexic, does, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Amy is genetically more likely to starve herself by some genome that codes for a “weak will”. It probably means that Amy has lower self-esteem; her mother might insinuate that she is fat, or her boyfriend mocks her eating habits. I submit that unless mental illness can be proven, all damaging—to oneself or another—adherences to social norms are products of environment, not genetics.

    As far as the displays of sexuality, I’d say it’s partially because people don’t want to see things they don’t have an interest in.

    I have no interest whatsoever in modern art. Passing by it doesn’t bother me. I also have no interest in milk. People drinking it doesn’t bother me. Unless something genuinely annoys you (like country music, I hate country music) and you are forced to watch, listen, or see it constantly, extreme aversion to it is a sign of intolerance and socialization, not natural preferences. Likewise, I’m not a huge fan of PDA of any sexuality. But unless it impedes me doing something, going somewhere, or enjoying something else, I really don’t give a shit. Likewise, I am not attracted to extremely obese people. But seeing them, talking to them, and being friends with them doesn’t bother me either. This isn’t because I’m weird or something, it’s because I have consciously decided that all of these things I don’t necessarily like actually do not impede my quality of life, so being an intolerant ass about them only makes me a bigot. It’s also something handy called exposure. Once you fall into the “freak” side of the show (by the nature of my radical feminism and fluid sexuality), things don’t bother me like they bother “normal” people because I see them, hear them, and talk about them every day. This is good. I hardly think that ignorance is good, and I think that we should be able to agree on that point at least.

    Oh, I know that. But, to see it like I do, assume a scale. Some people are -100 to +100, some are -10/+10, some are -1/+1. In other words, everyone starts at the center, and some people will sway more easily to pressure than others, or simply take less pressure TO sway, but in general, people will still maintain the balance they would have already had.

    I do assume that everyone starts at the center, so we are in agreement. However, if someone, by your terminology, is +100 and another person is +20, that doesn’t mean that the +100 person is naturally weak-willed. Like I said before, there probably exists other social pressures and environmental issues (not “environmental” like global warming, “environmental” like having a drunkard for a mother, for example) unless it can be proven that something is the product of genetics. And heretofore, I have not found very many studies that are able to conclusively state that our entire destiny is written in our DNA rather than a product of how we live and the people we meet, and the million and one other things that we don’t consciously realize have effects on our mind states.

    No, what I meant was: The majority of men don’t feel a pressure to be stoic, we don’t feel anyone exerting upon us that we HAVE TO be such a way. The only ones who do are the ones who aren’t. Most of us just are this way.

    You have stated, previously, that you feel that you are naturally stoic. Which is fine, by the way. Nevertheless, the reason you might say that men don’t feel the need to be stoic or something they are not is because you are the thing that other people might not be, like you said. I can absolutely attest that as someone who is not heterosexual, I feel every single day, if I think about it (and I try not to, because it’s utterly depressing), the pressure to be straight. This is because I am not. Thus, the reason you might not perceive that there exists pressure to fit a narrow model of humanity is because you already, naturally or otherwise (that point is totally beyond my scope here, and my willingness to debate, honestly), fit that mold in the most important ways. That is the major point of the term I deemed above as “privilege”.

    It’s a funny place, because I notice a lot of feminists almost rely on the argument that “men are more violent”, but then turn around and say that nobody is more prone to anything based on gender.

    Men are more violent based on statistics. Men are not more violent by genetic destiny. I have yet to meet a feminist, besides the radical separatists (and most of those are constructed as a tactic to discredit the majority of feminists) that actually thinks that. I think the miscommunication here might be on what I take for granted as the “sex verses gender” divide which is basic knowledge in feminism (although not elsewhere, sadly). Sex is XX or XY, gender is a social construct that fits the sexes into narrow models of acceptability on mostly arbitrary and false norms. So when I saw that “men are more violent”, I am not saying that “you are more violent because you are XY”, nor am I saying “you are criminal, because what hangs between your legs, and I hate you” (which you have not insinuated I said in this thread, thank god, or I would not be bothering to respond at all); I am saying that “genetic men, because they are influenced by a social role that praises violence, are statistically more likely to go around robbing people”. This is a very different thing than what anti-feminists would like to paint us as saying, despite how loudly we tell them they aren’t paying attention.

    I don’t consider my absence of most major emotions to be mental problems, I just consider it part of who I am, like my eye or hair color.

    Perhaps. I’m willing to entertain it as part and parcel of my “expanding human knowledge” methods. I thank you for sharing that. Perhaps there are people that go through life and never feel the need to hit things. I’m not one of them, which makes personal arguments a bit more taxing for me.

    I was speaking of the “one mode of masculinity is harmful” statement. Unless you have experienced life as a man, and can determine then, personally, that this is or isn’t harmful, it becomes a matter of opinion. Make more sense?

    If women and men are human, and gender norms are universal, and I can absolutely determine that gender norms are harmful to at least some, especially me, then I can conclude that gender norms are harmful, also, to some men as well. Albeit, in different ways because of the very different social constructs the genders fall into.

    I’m aware, but I was speaking in reference to defining what masculinity should mean. That is up to men, just as defining what femininity means should be up to women.

    My point here is, why bother? Seriously. I say fuck gender expectations. That’s a massive part-whole fallacy (oh noes, here comes the philosophy background). If I were to take 1000 people, and measure their heights, I would come up with some single measurement, such as 5’4’’. That number is useful when looking at data sets, not data points. However, if I was a stupid researcher (and many are, much to my dismay) and I came across a 5’8’’ person and told them, “you are wrong, because you are too tall”, or “gee, you are weird because you are not 5’4’’”, I would be committing a logical fallacy. What is average for a data set cannot be applied to individuals. Thus, I measured that the average across 1000 people was 5’4’’, but I did not measure that everyone is 5’4’’. Make sense? So if I expect everyone in that data set, or even most people in that data set, to be exactly 5’4’’ I should be fired as a scientist.

    Therefore, if I am looking at individuals, my averages from a large group are meaningless. Thus, gender roles work in the same way. Just because the average man is statistically more likely to rob a store than a woman does not mean that I should expect an individual man to be a thief, nor could I logically say that I can assume that a random man is a thief. Make sense? As applied to women, just because women, on average, are weaker then men doesn’t mean that an individual woman is weaker than an individual man, or that an individual woman is a frail little thing that men must protect, or that if a woman is not weak, there is something wrong with her. If I were to assume any of those things, I would be committing a logical fallacy. Which is why I say that if people cannot figure out how stupid they are being by committing this logical fallacy day in and day out (and most can’t, hell, I’m sure I do it often enough without realizing it) then measurements of averages, as social norms, are not only meaningless on the individual level, they are harmful. So let’s trash ‘em.

    No, we are not separate species, but we each tend to perceive the world and its pressures in vastly different ways, as well as being subjected to vastly different stimuli and pressures.

    I admit to not knowing where you got the impression that I disagree with this statement. I wholly and completely agree. My point is that these perceptions and pressures and stimuli are unnecessary and the result of very long legacy of historical sexism rather than a true look at what sex (male verses female, not hanky-panky) actually means.

    Women might see implants as a valid way to attract a mate, men see steroids.

    And both are stupid and wrong and harmful. But that doesn’t mean that women and men cannot see that the social pressures exist for both genders, whether or not they are that gender. If you were to say, “women have the pressure to cook well and please men before themselves”, I would say, “duh”. All you’d have to do to establish that is figure out what you are told not to do (gender roles are often mutually exclusive, making it easy to figure out what men should be and shouldn’t be, and vice-versa).

    In terms of kicking away social norms, that’s my major victory, that I’m sure, to you, would sound incredibly bad. Getting past the ingrained conditioning that says “men need women/men should have a woman/men aren’t important without a woman/life is meaningless without a woman”. Realizing that no, no I don’t need one, unless I wanted to reproduce (which I don’t), which is the only thing I can’t do without one.

    You should probably stick around this blog more often. If my point is that women don’t need men to be happy and fulfilled with themselves, I would be a complete asshole to say that men need women because they’re useless sacks of shit otherwise. If all men actually went around being useless sacks of shit, and some do that quite well, that’s because they, personally, are useless sacks of shit or think that they ought to be that way because women will clean up after them. My feeling on that is that self-sufficiency is a very good thing, although relying on others is good too if it’s mutual and equal and wanted (although being alone should be as acceptable as being in a relationship). As someone currently in a very long dry spell, I’d have to be completely wrapped in self-hatred to assume that the purpose of life is to attach one’s self to another person at all times. Oh, and there’s plenty of children in the world already. Not reproducing doesn’t make you a bad person. There’s quite a few times I’ve said to myself “I can’t stand people for longer than a couple of months” or “I’m way to selfish to raise a kid or two, I’d probably cock it up”. I have no idea where you got the impression that I think that people that stay out of relationships, as long as they don’t go around procuring casual sex by being lying manipulative assholes, are bad horrible people.

    For a long time, I felt like I was supposed to have a girlfriend, and wanted one, all the damn time, despite the fact that every attempt was hideous and awful. Took a fairly long time to sit back and really teach myself that I didn’t. That pressure is omnipresent, and one of the most potent we have in society, I think. Because it’s still there, even when I’ve gotten rid of most of it, and I still catch myself with it once in a while.

    I’ve had really hideous and awful relationships with men. Perhaps it’s the men around me, but I like dating women better because they are less apt to follow gender roles (mostly because as lesbians, gender roles tend to shake their fists at us in exasperation). Nobody needs a relationship, really. They’re wonderful and awesome things when they’re good, but if they’re not good, it’s quite a stupid idea to be in one. Although, as someone that has lived through quite a bit of abusive bullshit in relationships and a serial monogamist (with myself that is), I’m not the best source of relationship advice. And yes, the pressure to have boyfriends is omnipresent for me too. Which kind of sucks, when I find myself pursuing another woman, because that’s pretty far from getting a boyfriend. And see? There are social pressures that are stupid and pointless and make you want to throw things because the pressure to conform makes you feel angry. And you realize that the need to have a girlfriend is being imposed because it’s not natural, and even if it was, the imposition is frustrating. Which is exactly what I mean when I say that social norms are stupid.

    Genetic damage doesn’t count as a new gender. I know that sounds harsh, but errors in transcription are what they amount to.

    I hate to score this point, because it doesn’t really matter, but are you aware that the male chromosome is actually an “error in transcription” of the female chromosome that the universe found beneficial and decided to keep via evolution? So you’re the product of a mutation of female. Have fun. Actually, it really doesn’t matter, at all, only to say to the Bible “ha, you’re wrong, women came first”.

    Well, what’s your opinion on feminists who think that way, but when it comes to men, choose not to apply that same definition, and instead class us solely as “men”, and then apply various negative connotations to it?

    I think you might be misinterpreting feminists. I’m aware I do a lot of what is deemed man-hatin’, which is to say that I really think the default definition of “man” is quite stupid and silly, especially because it results in things like higher crime rates for them, but not females. That is not to say that men are stupid, because humans are cool and I like humans. To be quite honest, the default definition of female is quite stupid and silly too, and it results in stupid things like anorexia for girls, but not as likely for guys. I attach negative connotations to the gender of “male”, but I quite like the sex of “men”. But I also do the same for “female” because gender norms in general, in my opinion, are stupid.

    Also, as an aside, I used to rather strongly dislike you, yet I find myself continually coming back here to have long-winded discussions. It doesn’t mean we’re picking out curtains or anything. It’s about the closest I come to complimenting; to say you have good debate skills.

    Oh good. I’m quite a draconian decorator. I’d rather bite someone’s head off than agree on paint schemes or curtains. At least you had the decency to ask rather than assume, eventually. Which is, honestly, quite surprising because I’ve met quite a few assholes on the internets of both genders. I once decided that I would not really want to engage in seven page long debates, but I guess I changed my mind when approached the right way. I’m aware that I’m “radical”, and that can piss people off, which puts me on the defensive because I am defending my strange status-quo defying thoughts against random people whom I know very little about. I’m quite willing, however, to answer questions and engage in constructive argumentation, which I deem this to be (because I would have taken longer to come up with the part-whole fallacy by myself otherwise, and I’m quite proud of it).

    I honestly hope I have good debate skills. My old debate coach would kill me otherwise, and I would suspect that my philosophy professors are being quite dishonest in their grading if my GPA was a total sham.

  22. My point is that all preferences should be as meaningless and free as your favorite color.

    I figure, regardless of the status of society, people will always attach significance to the choices of others, no matter how meaningless they may be.

    Totally unrelated, but it’s “socialization”, not “socialisation”. Sorry, I’m a bit of a spelling fiend when it comes to technical terms.

    Well, if you want to split hairs, both are, in fact, correct. Does it also bother you that I spell it “behaviour”? :D

    It all depends on if you were taught American English or British English, or both. :)

    All I have to do to glean a basic understanding of the norm is turn on the television or read a book.

    Well, perhaps, but that still doesn’t tell you what it’s like to BE that person. I think that’s part of the problem, we have people who assume what it’s like, or create an assumption about it, and then base their future opinions off that.

    It’s a variety of factors: exposure, self-esteem (which is influenced by so many things), parents, friends, class, race… that simply saying that one is genetically prepossessed to do harmful things to themselves, or others, in the name of social norms is false.

    I simply mean that someone who already has an unbalanced mental state is much easier to further unbalance, than one who doesn’t. Like Columbine. Did they kill people because of “Doom”? (No.) They killed people because they were mentally unbalanced, and assorted societal pressures pushed them over.

    The only genetic propensity that would be relevant would be either extremely low intelligence or sociopathy, neither of which are problems of the majority of those that submit to social pressures.

    No, but one could say depression, and various other mental issues are genetic, or, failing that, something you’re simply born with.

    While Anne might watch the same television shows as Amy, an anorexic, does, that doesn’t necessarily mean that Amy is genetically more likely to starve herself by some genome that codes for a “weak will”.

    I’d say depressed women would have a much higher chance of self-esteem issues, which would then lead to things like anorexia.

    Blaming anything on any one factor is over-simplifying, I think.

    Unless something genuinely annoys you (like country music, I hate country music) and you are forced to watch, listen, or see it constantly, extreme aversion to it is a sign of intolerance and socialization, not natural preferences.

    I would say, not necessarily. I have an extreme aversion to a lot of things, and society would say I was wrong, and that I should like those things. I can’t tolerate even being in the same room as children, and when they scream in public, I wince, and try to get away from them.

    However, if someone, by your terminology, is +100 and another person is +20, that doesn’t mean that the +100 person is naturally weak-willed.

    That was meant to illustrate that some people take more pressure to achieve a result than others, and/or some simply won’t be pressured to change themselves. As in, the 1 to 1 scale, would be a very easily pressured person, who requires little to no pushing to sway, and the 100 to 100 scale would be someone that takes a lot of pressure, or can’t really be swayed at all easily.

    Make more sense?

    Thus, the reason you might not perceive that there exists pressure to fit a narrow model of humanity is because you already, naturally or otherwise (that point is totally beyond my scope here, and my willingness to debate, honestly), fit that mold in the most important ways. That is the major point of the term I deemed above as “privilege”.

    That’s more what I was saying, that people who already are something, aren’t pressured to be or stay that.

    Though, I wouldn’t really consider heterosexuality a narrow model, because, as in any species that sexually reproduces, the majority of it’s population will be heterosexual.

    Men are more violent based on statistics. Men are not more violent by genetic destiny. I have yet to meet a feminist, besides the radical separatists (and most of those are constructed as a tactic to discredit the majority of feminists) that actually thinks that.

    Well, then I’ve run across a fair amount of separatists. Even the ones that aren’t constructed to make feminism look bad, do a good job of making it look bad. Quite a few of the ones I’ve run across definitely believe that men are more violent, that men shouldn’t be allowed near children (despite statistics showing that more women than men maltreat children), and strongly rely on the “men are naturally more violent” argument.

    So when I saw that “men are more violent”, I am not saying that “you are more violent because you are XY”, nor am I saying “you are criminal, because what hangs between your legs, and I hate you” (which you have not insinuated I said in this thread, thank god, or I would not be bothering to respond at all); I am saying that “genetic men, because they are influenced by a social role that praises violence, are statistically more likely to go around robbing people”. This is a very different thing than what anti-feminists would like to paint us as saying, despite how loudly we tell them they aren’t paying attention.

    Still, it’s all in the wording. Just as women can be offended by careless wording, so can men.

    Perhaps. I’m willing to entertain it as part and parcel of my “expanding human knowledge” methods. I thank you for sharing that. Perhaps there are people that go through life and never feel the need to hit things. I’m not one of them, which makes personal arguments a bit more taxing for me.

    Well, I can joke about it, like, talking with my coworker about how we’d like to beat our other coworker, but it’s not an actual desire to do so, it’s just that human language limits how you may express frustration with someone, and crude terms get the point across incredibly well.

    Shockingly enough, I’m actually terribly non-violent. I can only think of one occasion in my life where I was moved to violence, and it was quite well justified and necessary.

    If women and men are human, and gender norms are universal, and I can absolutely determine that gender norms are harmful to at least some, especially me, then I can conclude that gender norms are harmful, also, to some men as well. Albeit, in different ways because of the very different social constructs the genders fall into.

    Perhaps, but personal experience is still the trump card. It’s why I don’t/can’t say how things affect women, because, last time I checked, I wasn’t one.

    Which is why I say that if people cannot figure out how stupid they are being by committing this logical fallacy day in and day out (and most can’t, hell, I’m sure I do it often enough without realizing it) then measurements of averages, as social norms, are not only meaningless on the individual level, they are harmful. So let’s trash ‘em.

    It’s a lot to ask humanity to do, I think. People like to classify things. They want to learn about them, then they want to classify them. Human curiosity and the way we organize and catalog things might very well be inherent in our species, but even if it isn’t, I’ve never met a person who doesn’t, on some level, do these things.

    If the average fits a large group, they’re going to apply the label, even if it doesn’t fit on an individual level.

    And both are stupid and wrong and harmful. But that doesn’t mean that women and men cannot see that the social pressures exist for both genders, whether or not they are that gender.

    Yeah, but then you also get into the questions of “Are there occasions where a person doing this is okay?”. You also start sliding around the attracting a mate part, and “what is reasonable and unreasonable to do in attracting one?” I’d assume we both acknowledge that humans, much like any other species, will act differently, or do different things, to attract the attention of someone they’re interested in.

    If you were to say, “women have the pressure to cook well and please men before themselves”, I would say, “duh”. All you’d have to do to establish that is figure out what you are told not to do (gender roles are often mutually exclusive, making it easy to figure out what men should be and shouldn’t be, and vice-versa).

    Seeing something isn’t quite the same as experiencing it, I think. The whole walking a mile in someone else’s shoes bit. Like, if we swapped bodies for a week, and interacted in the environment of the other, it would be a lot more than just making note of, or seeing the pressures of the other.

    You should probably stick around this blog more often. If my point is that women don’t need men to be happy and fulfilled with themselves, I would be a complete asshole to say that men need women because they’re useless sacks of shit otherwise.

    Sadly enough, I see that more often than not. A prevailing attitude of “We don’t need you, but you need us!”, and serious offense taken if I even so much as slightly insinuate that no, I don’t need them.

    As someone currently in a very long dry spell, I’d have to be completely wrapped in self-hatred to assume that the purpose of life is to attach one’s self to another person at all times.

    But I’d bet you feel the pressure to.

    Oh, and there’s plenty of children in the world already. Not reproducing doesn’t make you a bad person. There’s quite a few times I’ve said to myself “I can’t stand people for longer than a couple of months” or “I’m way to selfish to raise a kid or two, I’d probably cock it up”. I have no idea where you got the impression that I think that people that stay out of relationships, as long as they don’t go around procuring casual sex by being lying manipulative assholes, are bad horrible people.

    Well, I understand reproduction is a necessary evil, I just wish people would do less of it. Replace the adults who are having them, not go around like the Duggars and have 437 kids. (Don’t even get me started on them, yeesh.)

    I just acknowledge I’d be a horrible parent. I can’t even have dogs, because they’re too dependent. I just have cats, because they’re more like a roommate.

    Where I got that impression, was by me saying “No, I don’t specifically “need” a woman, unless I want to have kids, which would make a woman quite necessary”. Not just the staying single part. I’ve been run off blogs, banned, screamed at, and called a misogynist for daring to say I don’t need a woman to share my time/life with.

    For the record though, casual sex grosses me out. I’m incredibly, terribly picky about sex. I generally don’t get all that much out of it, I mean, I can have orgasms on my own.

    I’ve never had sex outside of the context of a relationship, and frankly, don’t see the point. I’m aware it works for some people, but I just don’t see why one would want to go to the effort and time of procuring a partner just for sex. I don’t even like shaking hands with strangers, sex seems far too personal to use like that.

    I’ve had really hideous and awful relationships with men. Perhaps it’s the men around me, but I like dating women better because they are less apt to follow gender roles (mostly because as lesbians, gender roles tend to shake their fists at us in exasperation).

    I think part of the pressure to keep trying at it, also tends to come from the fact that for every sorry, foul, empty, awful relationship you endure… You always know a friend who has a fantastic one.

    Well, I can’t exactly date lesbians, now can I? ;) My best friend happens to be one, but oddly, she mostly laments how hard it is to find a decent woman. So, maybe everybody sucks at dating?

    Nobody needs a relationship, really. They’re wonderful and awesome things when they’re good, but if they’re not good, it’s quite a stupid idea to be in one.

    I’ll have to take your word for it. I’ve never HAD a good one.

    Although, as someone that has lived through quite a bit of abusive bullshit in relationships and a serial monogamist (with myself that is), I’m not the best source of relationship advice.

    Oddly enough, and my friends find this most ironic… I give fantastic advice on them. I’ve been told, more than a few times, that I’ve saved someone’s relationship, and helped them make it much better and more fulfilling.

    Me, I just get cheated on, and talked into sex I didn’t want to have.

    And you realize that the need to have a girlfriend is being imposed because it’s not natural, and even if it was, the imposition is frustrating. Which is exactly what I mean when I say that social norms are stupid.

    I think, to an extent, it probably is pretty natural for humans to want to pair off. We wouldn’t have sex drives, and all that assorted stuff, and the ability to care for one another in deeper ways if it wasn’t.

    It’s just that a lot of people (more than society accounts for) really don’t, or can’t fit that. Do we not fit it because of our foul experiences, or because we never did fit it? That’s one we really can’t define, I think.

    It’s the imposition that bothers me, simply because it’s stating that I’m incomplete without one, or that I HAVE to have one. I’ve noticed, though, women are more callous about it than men. “Oh, you do (this and that) for a living? I bet your girlfriend loves that, comes in handy, right?” “Don’t have one.” “Oh…?” and you can tell they’re reasoning it out, wonder “what’s wrong with him?”, if they don’t outright actually SAY that. Which some do.

    I hate to score this point, because it doesn’t really matter, but are you aware that the male chromosome is actually an “error in transcription” of the female chromosome that the universe found beneficial and decided to keep via evolution? So you’re the product of a mutation of female. Have fun. Actually, it really doesn’t matter, at all, only to say to the Bible “ha, you’re wrong, women came first”.

    Well, allelic variation isn’t quite the same as a direct bit of damage, or faulty transcription.

    At the time, there wasn’t a female chromosome, OR a male one. It was an identical chromosome that diverged and became both the X and Y. Actually, an autosome.

    So you could say that both were an error. Though, I’m hesitant to say “error”, as I ascribe “error” to “harmful”.

    Besides, you can’t have female if you don’t have male. Asexual species are genderless.

    Oh good. I’m quite a draconian decorator. I’d rather bite someone’s head off than agree on paint schemes or curtains. At least you had the decency to ask rather than assume, eventually.

    Haha, it’s just one of my more favored figures of speech. At least you “got” it. A lot of people don’t. “Curtains? What…huh? I don’t understand what you mean!” is often heard.

    I’m quite willing, however, to answer questions and engage in constructive argumentation, which I deem this to be (because I would have taken longer to come up with the part-whole fallacy by myself otherwise, and I’m quite proud of it).

    I honestly hope I have good debate skills. My old debate coach would kill me otherwise, and I would suspect that my philosophy professors are being quite dishonest in their grading if my GPA was a total sham.

    Haha, fair enough. I’m unaware if I do or not, but then, I never did the college thing, or any of that. (Much to the chagrin of my mother.) I do all my learning freelance, as it were. I find a subject I like, and I absorb as much of it as I can.

  23. For the record, I was the one that was incomplete. Sorry I didn’t come back around sooner. I’ve been really busy.

    D – I think you’re free to do whatever you damn well please as long as you’re not hurting anyone. I felt incomplete when I submitted to the societal pressures. I felt like I sold out in a way. Now, I do and perceive things in a way that I prescribe, not society. I only wish everyone would do that. Perhaps you wouldn’t change much, but I’m sure a lot of people would. Of course we have no way of knowing how many, but I find it hard to believe that even a majority of people want to conform to gender norms any more than they want to conform to the ideal of the obedient consumer. You might call that idealistic. Fine. I happen to believe that folks have, at least to some extent, an intrinsic ability to cross gender boundaries, and not always in obvious ways. If you looked at me, you’d think I was an average guy. Clearly, in reading what I have to write here, you know I’m not – at least not exactly. My point is that neither of us have anyway of knowing how many men, or women for that matter, have the dichotomy of being sick to death of gender norms and feeling obligated to succumb to the pressures, but they’re out there. I know because I’m one of them. I’ve broken free of it somewhat, but I still find myself falling back into old habits.

    You define your “man”hood one way. I define my “man”hood another way. We should be mutually be free to write our own respective definitions and not have to worry about social pressures. That freedom ends when we start trying to define it for others. Apologies if I came off that way. I’m new to this and have some pretty strong feelings about it.

  24. D – I think you’re free to do whatever you damn well please as long as you’re not hurting anyone.

    That’s a little strong.

    I prefer that I’m free to do whatever I please, as long as I’m not directly hurting anyone. In other words, I do not hurt people by mission of action. However, should they become hurt through my inaction, or inadvertently because of how I am, that’s none of my concern.

    In other words, if some woman floats through my life, and decides she’s deeply saddened and upset because I’m not emotional enough for her, and this hurts her feelings, that’s tough shit.

    Make sense?

    Sounds rough, I’m sure, but whilst I will not intentionally do someone damage, I’m not going to go out of my way to alter myself, because of how they react to my normal behaviour.

    but I find it hard to believe that even a majority of people want to conform to gender norms any more than they want to conform to the ideal of the obedient consumer.

    Take a survey of men and ask them if they wish they could be more emotional. I bet you’ll find a majority do not.

    I know because I’m one of them. I’ve broken free of it somewhat, but I still find myself falling back into old habits.

    Of course, you’d never consider those old habits a default bit of your personality, though, would you?

    If I see you falling back into old habits, that tells me you’re fighting yourself to be different than what you are.

    Apologies if I came off that way. I’m new to this and have some pretty strong feelings about it.

    C’est la vie.

    It did sound as though you were pushing your “ideal”, which is, of course, not at all ideal for me.

  25. I prefer that I’m free to do whatever I please, as long as I’m not directly hurting anyone. In other words, I do not hurt people by mission of action. However, should they become hurt through my inaction, or inadvertently because of how I am, that’s none of my concern.

    You know, you just wrote out the manifesto of priviledge right there. I mean, anyone can dodge the racist/sexist/homophobic bullet now with “but, but, I didn’t mean to make anyone mad!” and we’re all expected to think that it’s all okay. No, not even close.

    I couldn’t just let that point lie.

  26. You know, you just wrote out the manifesto of priviledge right there. I mean, anyone can dodge the racist/sexist/homophobic bullet now with “but, but, I didn’t mean to make anyone mad!” and we’re all expected to think that it’s all okay. No, not even close.

    I couldn’t just let that point lie.

    Not really. It simply means that I do not do things that directly hurt people. Like I said as an example above:

    In other words, if some woman floats through my life, and decides she’s deeply saddened and upset because I’m not emotional enough for her, and this hurts her feelings, that’s tough shit.

    Because, in my opinion, asking someone to change themselves, for you because you don’t like how they are, is something I find unreasonable. Especially when that person isn’t hurting anyone.

  27. d- the only thing I’m fighting is societal pressure to regress, falling back to being but a cog in the machine that I sold out to. I was “effeminate” as a boy, until I got picked on enough to think that it was best to alter my behavior. I credit my youthful ignorance and the cost of being different during adolescence with that.

    As for not “directly” hurting anyone, I choose to take responsibility for both what I do and what I fail to do, such as notice that my action/inaction, while it may seem natural (it may not be), is hurting someone, decide to change it/not change it accordingly, and accept the consequences of my changes/lack of changes. To me, that’s what personal responsibility is really about. I don’t commit my actions/inactions in a vacuum, so they’re bound to affect someone somehow, whether I intend them to or not. Better to watch myself so my conscious is clear than to make the rest of the world responsible for how my apathy/inaction/what have you may be affecting them. No one should have to carry that load for me.

  28. I think of a person asking their partner to change something is analogous to setting terms in a relationship – kind of a verbal contract, if you will. If one don’t accept the other’s terms, they get out of that relationship. Simple enough, but folks try to make this more difficult than it has to be. They love the person, but not enough to accept their terms. This is why people have problems.

  29. As for not “directly” hurting anyone, I choose to take responsibility for both what I do and what I fail to do, such as notice that my action/inaction, while it may seem natural (it may not be), is hurting someone, decide to change it/not change it accordingly, and accept the consequences of my changes/lack of changes. To me, that’s what personal responsibility is really about. I don’t commit my actions/inactions in a vacuum, so they’re bound to affect someone somehow, whether I intend them to or not.

    That’s all well and good, but my point is, it is not anyone’s right to tell someone else “You should change yourself because I don’t like you”.

    Doesn’t work that way. People are free to not interact with me, if they find me abrasive, upsetting, or whatnot.

    Better to watch myself so my conscious is clear than to make the rest of the world responsible for how my apathy/inaction/what have you may be affecting them. No one should have to carry that load for me.

    My point is, I shouldn’t have to. I’m not going to “watch myself” and walk around on eggshells.

    I think of a person asking their partner to change something is analogous to setting terms in a relationship – kind of a verbal contract, if you will. If one don’t accept the other’s terms, they get out of that relationship. Simple enough, but folks try to make this more difficult than it has to be. They love the person, but not enough to accept their terms. This is why people have problems.

    I’m not talking about relationships, I don’t “do” relationships.

    I simply meant in general. Thing is, I’m against people asking their partner to change in a relationship. Doesn’t work that way.

    It’s often one half of the relationship doing all the asking, and the other doing all the changing.

    If someone can’t make a purchase “as-is”, too bad for them. You aren’t buying a “fixer upper”.

  30. Oop, just noticed I missed a word:

    “Thing is, I’m against people asking their partner to change in a relationship.”

    Should be:

    “Thing is, I’m also against people asking their partner to change in a relationship.”

  31. d – someone forgot to tell you that relationships are about compromise. But, I forgot, you don’t “do” relationships. Gee, I wonder why.

  32. d – someone forgot to tell you that relationships are about compromise. But, I forgot, you don’t “do” relationships. Gee, I wonder why.

    Yeah, and “I demand you change for me” isn’t compromise. Compromise is two people giving up things. One person giving them up is called “sacrifice”, not compromise.

    Therein lies the difference.

    You wonder why? Because when applying a very simple cost/benefit analysis to them…they come up quite lacking. Lots of costs, no benefits. Unless you count “orgasm provided by a person other than yourself”, which, really, I don’t count as a benefit. Sex isn’t a big deal to me.

    Also simply because I don’t need one. I function fine by myself.

  33. (I just lost my previous comment, so I hope this doesn’t appear twice – sorry if it does)

    I know I am pretty late commenting on this, but I have been reading back through your blog!

    I think you should check this out:
    #http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manhunter_(Kate_Spencer)

    Superhero comic from DC – Kate is a laywer, she has a male secretary, she smokes, she is divorced and she hunts down super villans. Yeah, her costume is skin tight but unlike other female superheroes she is never drawn in a “sexy” pose. She is drawn kicking a lot of ass though.

    You can get a lot of the back issues in trades. I highly recommend it!

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  2. Pingback: this could be my manifesto « on the edge of time

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