Morning Ed: Women & Men {2017.12.07.Th}


Will Truman

Will Truman is the Editor-in-Chief of Ordinary Times. He is also on Twitter.

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46 Responses

  1. Avatar LeeEsq says:

    WM1: Goes to a link about technology allowing couples in long distance relationship to kind of, sort of touch each other with a supped up version of Nintendo’s power glove.

    WM2: For a global perspective, this look into the patriarchy was very Euro-centric and English Euro-centric at that. We heard a lot about the Church and Europe, particularly England, but not much about female subjection under Hinduism in India or Japanese patriarchy under Samurai rule. Global should mean that, global.

    WM3: Marxists were always very weird when it came to sex. Many of them hated bourgeois norms an advocated free love like Alexandra Kollotai or Trotsky but many others like Lenin and Stalin had a very strong puritanical streak. They all tended to hate dating and romance as it worked out in the West because it was either bourgeois and bad or a waste of time that distracted from the Revolution The Chinese Communist Party put it as “making love is a mental disease.” Like any good religious order, the higher-ups were freaking hypocrites about anything they said about sex.

    WM5: If being transgender has at least partially biological origins, the ideas that male and female brains are wired differently makes a lot of intuitive sense. Transgender people might be people whose brains have the wiring for one sex but the biological body of another. (I slightly edited this paragraph to be less accidentally – I think – insulting to trans people – maribou.)

    WM6: On the other hand, controlling what women wore and not allowing them to express themselves sexually was a very popular tool of the patriarchy. I’m not really sure that puritanical feminism really works as an ideology even if allowing greater freedom of dress is a mixed blessing

    WM7: Having fallen in love at first sight when I was 29 and having the besotted feeling last until I was 32 and still somewhat persist till today, although its complicated, I can definitely say that falling in love at first sight exists. Science be damned and psychology isn’t reliable.Report

  2. Avatar Damon says:

    [WM3] The bodies of 15 year old girls are to be used in support of our glorious revolution. The people own their bodies (in the form of the commanders, ahem). Yeah “surprisingly progressive”.

    [WM5] Well, no, there are a lot of physical strengths and weaknesses males/females have.

    [WM7] Lust yes. Love, no. For my own perspective, it takes a lot of “together time” to move from one to the other.

    [WM6] “Who Is Distracted by a Girl Wearing Skintight Leggings” Every single male near puberty or past it. Girl in the case being a woman or female post puberty. I go to the grocery store and it’s all moms in yoga pants-tight yoga pants. I go to kick fit and it’s moms in tights/yoga pants. You know, if you’re publicly displaying your “goods”, I’m going to window shop.Report

    • Avatar Maribou says:

      @damon They’re not publicly displaying their goods, given that they’re wearing clothing, nor are their bodies “goods”. They’re going about their day in the clothes that are most comfortable for them. (I don’t care if you look at their bodies, either, fwiw, “custody of the eyes” is stupid – I just find the whole metaphor gross and demeaning.)Report

      • Avatar Damon says:


        If the clothing is so tight it’s possible to tell if the “lawn” is mowed or not, and the outline of the “lady parts” is distinct, I can find no other word better suited than “display”. Once or twice on different people and it could be excused as nothing, but the same people every time? I’m thinking it’s no accident but is intentional.

        To quote jerry sienfield “not that there’s anything WRONG with that”.Report

        • Avatar Kazzy says:

          Are you displaying your arms when you wear a t-shirt?Report

        • Avatar Maribou says:

          @damon They may not be *displaying*, so much as *not giving a crap* (in my experience this seems to be the case, as baffling as I find it).

          In any event my objection wasn’t to the word display – I wouldn’t have complained at that alone – it was to the whole metaphor of goods and shopping. Lady parts aren’t “for sale”.Report

          • Avatar Damon says:

            I don’t know about the giving a crap or not. I’ve never bothered to ask. None of the women I know with any intimacy, do this, but I would only ask them. Maybe I’ll ask them anyway, see what kind of response I get.

            I sure as hell am not asking some guy’s wife that I barely know about it.Report

  3. fillyjonk fillyjonk says:

    WM7: there’s also a difference between being “in love with” someone and “loving” them. The first can fade; the second is much less likely to. Also, “being in love” is self-centered; “loving” centers on the other person.

    I believe that it’s possible to have attraction at first sight, but not genuine love: I have met too many handsome dudes who were utter jerks (and whom I disliked after getting to know them slightly, despite whatever visual attraction they might have).

    I also don’t believe in the concept of soulmates, partly because if everyone has a soulmate, either I haven’t traveled enough to find mine, or I met him and was too blind to realize it. It seems a very…stultifying….concept. It also seems to suggest people who haven’t coupled some how lack….I don’t know what, detection-ability or appreciation that such and such person is their soulmate, or what.Report

  4. Avatar Oscar Gordon says:

    Wm6; It strikes me that this opinion could be served by looking at single sex schools with lax dress codes (if any exist).Report

    • Avatar Pinky says:

      In my experience, males tend to notice bodies and females tend to notice fashion. Girls are always going to play their little dominance games as long as a school has a lax dress code. The study is interesting in that females are affected by attire even when it’s theirs.Report

      • fillyjonk fillyjonk says:

        Also, if there are any socioeconomic differences at all in the town, that will be noticed and exploited heavily, at least by the girls.

        See: why I had to live with the derisive nickname “Wrangler” in junior high. (Jordaches were the “cool” jeans at the time. My parents were too frugal to buy anything but basic brands….)

        Even with a dress code of sorts, certain types of girls are very good at picking up on subtle SES signals.Report

      • Avatar Oscar Gordon says:

        But I wonder if the girls would be dressing to objectify themselves if there were no boys to dress for? If it was just girls, would the dress shift from sexual objectification to financial/status signalling?Report

        • Avatar Pinky says:

          In my whole life, I’ve never heard a man initiate a conversation about a bridesmaid’s dress. I’ve been to plenty of weddings, and I can tell you who was the hottest bridesmaid at each of them, and I have no memory of any of their dresses. They were almost all low-cut though. Do they do that to attract the male gaze? I don’t know. I think they do that for themselves (or each other, I guess).Report

  5. Avatar Doctor Jay says:

    I keep wondering if [WM1] is one of @will’s little jokes that I don’t quite get, since it talks about a touch-response glove, and there’s no overt mention of coercion.

    Here is a piece about the work of Catherine Dulac on the topic that I find interesting. Dulac herself does not write popular articles, she is cautious of hype and misinterpretation.

    Here is another piece about Dulac’s work where she talks about how sensory reactions differ male to female, and how we see differences in neurons connecting to the amygdala.

    My takeaway from this is that yes, the brain of a male is likely to possess structures which that the brain of a female does not have. But most structures overlap, and it’s more a question of which structures get activated and used.Report

  6. Avatar pillsy says:

    At least one little thing has gone half-right during this horrible week. Sam Seder has been reinstated by MSNBC.

    Over-under on major media organizations learning their lesson and in the future not giving alt-right serial-fabulist rape apologists the time of day?Report

  7. Avatar Morat20 says:

    In unrelated news, it appears that the reason Rand Paul got tackled by his neighbor was, in fact, about petunias.

    The short version is: Paul’s neighbor has a reputation for, let’s charitably call it, exacting lawn standards, and had apparently had a screaming match with Paul about a decade prior about lawn clippings.Report

    • fillyjonk fillyjonk says:

      Holy crap. I’m glad I’m 6″ taller and about 45 pounds heavier than my neighbor who harasses me about my pecan tree dropping stuff in her yard. I could totally take her if it came to it….Report

  8. Avatar Saul Degraw says:

    Franken announced he will resign from the Senate.Report

  9. Avatar LeeEsq says:

    Alabamans seemed posed to elect a pedophile assaulter because, hey, he isn’t a Democrat.Report

  10. Avatar Kazzy says:

    Maybe I’m misunderstanding the law, but isn’t this illegal?

    • Avatar Morat20 says:

      Even if it was, does it matter? He could turn into a gibbering, cosmic horror and eat a live Christian on TV and the worst you’d hear is “mild concern” from GOP politicians. Specifically the ones not up for re-election.Report

    • Avatar Pinky says:

      Why would that be illegal?Report

      • Avatar Kazzy says:

        I thought Conway got in some hot water earlier for promoting Ivanka’s Nordstrom line. Something about using the office of the President and related offices to endorse products. But I may be misunderstanding the law.Report

        • Avatar Kolohe says:

          That was sketchy because of Ivanka’s finanicial interest in such an endorsement.

          As long as its not a family member (even if its an ideological ally), I view it as something like this Or, for instance, that Obama essentially endorsed Hamilton from the point it was just a few songs in Miranda’s mind.Report

      • It’s a lie, because it implies that Trump read a book, but not made under oath.Report

    • Avatar Saul Degraw says:

      He is just endorsing a book. It’s legal. Tacky possibly but I don’t see what is illegal about it.Report

      • fillyjonk fillyjonk says:

        I’d say, “It may also backfire” but then again the sort of people who’d be predisposed to buy a Kilmeade-written book probably are Trump fans (or at least, not not-fans) to begin with.

        I dunno. I’m at the point of casting a vote for any politician who pledges not to go on social media.Report

      • Avatar Maribou says:

        Yeah, presidents endorse books all the time – usually by agreeing to ‘what is the president reading?’ articles, granted, but there’s no real difference.Report

  11. Avatar Kazzy says:


    I’ve seen Leonard Sax speak. Interesting guy.

    I also find the description a bit off; he isn’t addressing what dress codes ought to be but, rather, how parents ought to approach the matter. Which is very much in line with his general approach focused on the role of parents.

    And while instituting a dress code that is focused on the impact on learning of the wearer him/herself as opposed to some moral code or the impact on the observer feels like a huge step in the right direction… it still feels predicated on the notion of telling women what is best for them vis a vis there physical appearance and dress. I just don’t think that is the role of the school. Parents? Yes, within limits. So I don’t find his advice objectionable… disagreeable, maybe… but not objectionable. But were it used to actually influence policy… that I’d object to.Report

    • Avatar Maria says:

      You have articulated what I was thinking. I have no problem monitoring my girls’ clothing choices, when the time comes, but I do have a problem with dress codes that over-emphasize the clothing options of girls, no matter what justification might be used (distracting to buys, distracting to themselves). There is still an underlying tone of “appearances matter” that generally gets foisted onto the girls more so than onto boys.

      Having more and more friends from overseas also makes me think uniforms are something to consider. As it is now, the only public schools that I have seen institute uniforms are ones that have high levels of poverty in their school populations, as well as having concerns about gangs, etc. There maybe other schools out there that have uniforms for other reasons, but I find there is a general bias against uniforms in public schools in the US.Report

      • Avatar Kazzy says:

        Blind squirrel! Nut!

        I argue about dress restrictions with the girlfriend quite a bit. She’s older (41 to my 34), has a 10-year-old daughter (I have sons 4.5 and 2.5), and is a little more socially conservative on these topics. So, we have very differnent starting points and different situations. Our kids are also different. Her daughter would wear a potato sack if allowed; doesn’t care a wit. My boys (mainly the older with the younger following) are incredibly choosy. Because the older felt slowed down by jeans, he wears leggings we buy in the girls section of Target with his Darth Vader shirt because he loves DV because he’s a villain even though kid has never actually watched any Star Wars. But I digress…

        She says she wouldn’t let her son wear leggings. I say they’re what he wants and who cares? She picks out her daughter’s clothes so she isn’t made fun of (daughter also has some social quirks and learning issues so social isolation is a real concern). I say that buys into the teasing culture.

        I disagree with her. And yet, I don’t think she’s wrong. Applying a male perspective to female clothing world feels like an invitation to have blind spots.Report

  12. Avatar Jaybird says:

    There’s currently a (pretty horrible) story floating around on the twitters.

    Adult film star August Ames recently took her own life as a response to cyberbullying (apparently).

    She found out that one of her male co-stars at a then-upcoming shoot had also done male-male scenes and she dropped out and tweeted an open warning to whomever would be replacing her on the shoot that they would be working with crossover performers and she dropped out because of health safety concerns. (I can’t find the exact tweets and don’t exactly feel like searching for them.)

    Well, golly, this resulted in one heck of a crapstorm. A bunch of performers accused her of bigotry and a bunch of other folks piled on.

    Granted, her chosen profession is one that has a disproportionate amount of suicides in it and she apparently suffered from depression even before this incident but she committed suicide a few days ago, apparently, as a response to the online bullying she received.

    And a whole bunch of people started screenshotting and quoting all of the people who tweeted variants of “kill yourself” to her and a whole bunch of performers are arguing that they did nothing wrong (and/or locking their twitter accounts).

    It feels like something that has the potential to turn into a bigger cultural fight.Report

    • Avatar Kazzy says:

      This is indeed a complex and tragic story.

      I imagine its traction will be limited given the folks involved. Too many just won’t even care about a dead adult performer.Report