Monday, December 5, 2016

More Feminist Myths

It’s quite straightforward: gender quality is an article of faith of modern Third Wave Feminism, and so is the cult-like demand for all professions to be 50% male and 50% female.

Of course, we all know that the feminist fanatics strangely do not seem to be demanding gender equality in trades like construction workers, garbage collectors, deep sea fishermen, mechanics, etc., because these trades are dirty, difficult and sometimes dangerous, and most women – generally speaking – have neither the type of bodily strength nor interest to do such work.

But, at the same time, there are plenty of professions largely dominated by women, for example, secretaries, administrative assistants, housekeepers, house cleaners, flight attendants, nurses, receptionists, or workers in women’s beauty salons (e.g., see here).

So would we really want these latter professions to be 50% men as well?

The answer is: no, the very idea is stupid and unrealistic.

The reason? It’s simple male psychology: most men would find such work demeaning, humiliating, emasculating, and devaluing them as men. The modern feminist cult of gender equality can’t realistically work here, even if some minority of men do work in these professions and don’t mind the work (and I am not trying to bash such men).

Another point is that the ability to earn a decent salary and have at least a respectable trade or profession is one of the most important advantages a man can have in attracting a wife. But modern feminism and neoliberalism seem intent on savagely attacking the ability of men to do this, and the male ability to attain a high-wage, secure employment by which he – as the only household breadwinner – could support a wife and family.

So what happens when men are forced into emasculating professions through desperation or poverty and women out-earn men and are increasingly pushed into higher-earning professions with gender quotas and obviously unfair hiring practices?

The answer: men are going to become *increasingly unattractive to women* (for some data in support of this, see here). Women like higher-earning husbands and alpha males, not men working for miserable wages as nurses or receptionists:
“One indicator of women’s lifestyle preferences is found in patterns of educational homogamy: whether women choose husbands with equal levels of education, or prefer a better-educated and higher-earning spouse.

Women’s aspiration to marry up, if they can, to a man who is better-educated and higher-earning, persists in most European countries. The Nordic countries share this pattern with all other parts of Europe. Women thereby continue to use marriage as an alternative or supplement to their employment careers. Financial dependence on a man has lost none of its attractions after the equal opportunities revolution. Symmetrical family roles are not the ideal sought by most couples, even though they are popular among the minority of highly educated professionals. It is thus not surprising that wives generally earn less than their husbands, and that most couples rationally decide that it makes sense for her to take on the larger share of childcare, and use most or all the parental leave allowance. This is just as true of the Nordic countries as elsewhere.”
Hakim, Catherine. 2011. Feminist Myths and Magic Medicine: The Flawed Thinking behind Calls for Further Equality, Centre for Policy Studies, London, p. 24.
I also doubt that many men really feel a sense of self-respect, self-esteem and masculinity in a household where a woman is the sole breadwinner.

But, to sum up, all this would suggest that pushing gender equality to the ridiculous extremes now demanded by the cultural left will have horrible effects on family formation, marriage, and the birth rate.

Hakim, Catherine. 2011. Feminist Myths and Magic Medicine: The Flawed Thinking behind Calls for Further Equality, Centre for Policy Studies, London, p. 24.

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  1. I'm neutral overall on the debate between feminists, Men's rights activists and everyone inbetween, but I think one of the problems is the ultra atomisation that hardline neoliberal ideology has on society. The nuclear family is therefore broken up, destroying on of the closest bonds of the modern world. (At least theoretically) This is speculation of course and might sound conspiracy theory-ish, but food for thought...

  2. Some professions out of the top of my head that are well-paid and majority women are things like Accounting, Public Relations, Marketing, and I believe now Psychiatry, though I'd have to do the exact statistical research later today if you want them.

  3. LK I think you need to give the examples of "ridiculous extremes now demanded by the cultural left" otherwise you're open to being accused of using a strawman

  4. It has already had the effect.

    FYI women have been getting more and more unhappy in this period too.

    The last time we saw the state so aggressively target family structures was in the USSR. But the third wavers have brought it to the West as the Wall fell.

  5. I've seen many nurses in US who were men. They make good money also. Women are attracted to much less money making men than nurses. May be It is considered a feminine profession but you can't say that nurses earn too little compared to other professions. I've been a deep sea fisherman myself on a factory trawler in US in Alaska. They had few women there, clearly a minority but they worked there. Of course they were always surrounded by men trying to be funny and interesting around them. They weren't deckhands but neither was I. The work is hard there pchycologically. Physically more demanding jobs were given to men but I can't say that women couldn't take the job and I was doing better. I worked in the freezer hold, that was moving 20 kg fish boxes, women could do It, they were not given the job because it was assumed that it had to be done by a big guy like me. For me It was much harder to inspect the fish fillet at the inspecting tables because It was so boring and tedious to stand there for six hours and do the same thing, women could take it better. During the offloads in Dutch Harbor all women were offloading fish equally with men. I haven't seen a woman deckhand but I can't see why they could not do It.

    1. The presence of some few women in fishing and a minority of men in nursing doesn't refute what I said, though.

  6. "most women – generally speaking – have neither the type of bodily strength nor interest to do such work"

    Here lies the issue, the average American woman is 5'04" tall and about 166 lbs. I've seen a few sources indicate women might be a few inches taller on average. The average women wears a a size 8.5 shoe(US) and has a hand that measures about 6.8 inches long by 7.75 inches wide.

    The average American man stands 5'09.5" or 5'10" tall, depending on who you ask. In addition they way about 191 lbs and wear a size 10.5 shoe(US). The average man has a hand thats about 7.5 inches long by 8.75 inches spread out. In addition, men tend to have 15-20% more muscle mass, especially in the upper body, with wider shoulders to boot.

    Truth be told, the biological differences between men and women, because of how they average will show up in the workplace statistics. Sure, there are women who are taller than me, run faster, and are stronger, but its the averages that are reflected in the data.

    Out of 100 men and 100 women, randomly selected there will be more men who are physically capable of doing farm work, construction, deep sea fishing, utility maintenance, or working on an old rig. That doesn't mean none of the women could. But out of the all the men probably 60 or 70 could do those things where as the women might struggle to fine 35 or 40 who could.

    In addition I do believe the feminists have a point. Culture probably does push people in certain directions based on gender. Look ash classic example f the types of toys children are given. Cooking and barbie dolls for the girls, guns and tools for the boys. Yet Gordon Ramsey was able to grow up to be a a renowned chef.

    Part of why certain professions are more male dominated is because when they were first being created they were simply easier for men to do than women. However, I believe those were more sexist times and women were discouraged from working on power lines and building canals once those professions were deemed "masculine".

    Even now, if we had a truly equal society with no biases and no sexist attitudes, even implicit ones we would still not see a 50/50 split between men and women working in coal mines. If we could somehow undermine biology and have a totally neutral attitude toward sex and gender(not sure if thats possible, or what that would even be like) we would see more women doing these dangerous "masculine" jobs than now, but it still wouldn't be equal.

    1. Male and female children prefer different toys probably because of significant biological influences:

  7. Calls for forced 50/50 gender equality in all professions is indeed stupid, but it's also stupid to feel 'emasculated' to be a secretary, administrative assistant, nurse, or receptionist who makes a good living. These are largely gender neutral occupations--men are on average no more and no less suited for them than women, unlike in the case of construction work or working at a women's beauty salon. (Note that just because they are gender neutral in this sense doesn't mean it makes any sense to try and *force* a 50/50 ratio of men to women onto these professions)

    In fact, one who is truly secure in their masculinity should be 'man enough' to not give a rat's ass about what others think about their job, so long as they make enough to provide a decent life for themselves and their family. That kind of confidence is actually what most attracts women, along with money. The latter is the real issue with many of these professions--one should be able to make a good living as a secretary or receptionist, but stagnant wages make it difficult.

  8. Sorry LK but do you have proofs that:
    1°) most men performing "feminine" jobs do suffer from it (in contradistinction to having meager means and prospects etc.) ?
    2°)Do they suffer from these situations more than people who are stacked in one sex only profession (like say in the army) so that having a mixed workplace wherever possible is or is not a benefit to most (provided that most people are attracted to the opposite sex and that most people meet their mate at the workplace)?
    3°) that they suffer from it because of their very genes and not because of manliness stereotypes that are precisely what many feminists intend to get rid of here ?
    4°) most women are attracted to "alpha males" (whatever this might mean)? and furthermore are so attracted as a genetic, hereditary trait ?
    [from what I know people are generally attracted by people from the same cultural and social background, that is the main variable explaining couple forming, along with hard to delineate psychological and physical contingencies.]
    3°) that unfair, pro-women biased hiring practices are now pervasive ? (or are they legally enforced in the UK ?)
    4°) Again that boys playing GI joe and girls playing barbies is a hereditary trait ? (which would be strange considering that plastic toys were rather uncommon within the remote past of that species of ours.)
    And of course the political demand for a pure 50/50 sex ratio within each and every trade is silly but then
    5°) How many feminists do advocate this ? how basic a tenet is it to them as compared to free abortion, equal pay for equal work, more equal dispatch of domestic work ?
    (the last demand being totally sound I think provided you advance it through shorter working days and weeks : where one male breadwinner could feed a whole family with 40 hours a week, two breadwinners should be able to do the same with 20 hours a week or so.
    Common sensical feminism and good old left policies go hand in hand.

  9. "But, at the same time, there are plenty of professions largely dominated by women, for example, secretaries, administrative assistants, housekeepers, house cleaners, flight attendants, nurses, receptionists, or workers in women’s beauty salons (e.g., see here).

    So would we really want these latter professions to be 50% men as well?

    The answer is: no, the very idea is stupid and unrealistic.

    Why is it stupid and unrealistic? Men can clean, men can manage both passenger safety and serving in-flight snacks as well as women can, men can nurse, greet customers, answer and direct incoming phone calls. Of the jobs you listed, the only one with a possible rational reason for men not do it is beauty work -- not because men can't do that work but because women customers probably don't want a man doing it.

  10. "men are going to become *increasingly unattractive to women*"

    This and the "marrying up" idea omit the possibility that women are considering males in large part as positional goods. If all male salaries dropped 50%, just what percentage of currently married males would not have gotten married because of this change? It strikes me that women who are looking for supplementary assistance from their spouse are looking for whichever spouse provides the most benefit over his carrying cost. Including personal services such as cooking, cleaning, childcare, emotional support, common interests, etc. That describes my personal relationship with my fiance pretty clearly.