No boys allowed

As most of you know, I volunteer for Write Girl. I'm fairly new to it, but it seems like an excellent organization, so if you've ever thought you should be a little less self-involved and give something back to the community, now is the time. Here's a message from Write Girl:

WriteGirl, a creative writing and mentoring organization for teen girls, is seeking volunteers for our new season to help with everything from event planning to public relations to mentoring and more. With more than 30 events annually, and a membership of more than 200, joining WriteGirl means joining a dynamic community of women and girls. In addition to women writers, we welcome professionals in all fields to contribute talent and time to this vital program for girls. Deadline to apply is January 8th. Please visit our website for an application and more information:

Go on. You'll be glad you did.

Things that are clogging my arteries
In Canada, we have this thing called Cheezies. They're like crunchy Cheetos, but a little less radioactive-looking. Whenever Canadians visit us, they brings us bags and bags of them. They're yummy. They're orange. And they're clogging my arteries.


Elver said...

Isn't a girl-only organization kinda, well, sexist? Especially considering that, on average, boys need way more help in school than girls? Like, if I remember correctly, then in United States high schools, girls make up 85% of students whose GPA is 4.0 or higher.

And this is just my subjective view of things, but from what I've seen, there are way more women studying writing than there are men.

Not that I'm complaining or anything. The more girls in my field, the better ;)

Just, you know, fairness is a great idea to uphold.

Jane said...

And yet, even though women are statistically smarter than men, men still run the whole damn show worldwide - not to mention almost all the TV shows (my immediate area of concern).

So yeah, Write Girl might be sexist, but the entire frackin world is sexist the other way, and until that changes, I reserve the right to promote female empowerment however the hell I want.



Elver said...

I wouldn't say that girls are smarter on average. The educational institution is geared more towards their needs, giving them more opportunities in life.

School, especially in the USA, is about conforming. Having brains and understanding the subject isn't as important as conforming to the rules that the school and the teacher set. Some of which might appear frustratingly arbitrary to most people. I'm sorry for saying this, but women tend to conform to rules more easily than men.

While men would appear to "run the show worldwide", the problem doesn't seem to be a male conspiracy, but rather the fact that there are fewer women with equal drive. Opportunities exist for both genders, but people who wish to take them are more numerous among males.

People who are natural entrepreneurs make up roughly 3% of any population. For some reason or other, the majority of these people are male. It could be that being an entrepreneur means being more aggressive, so males have a natural advantage, with testosterone and all.

On the other hand, quite a lot of women in their mid-20s want to have a child, and a family. For women it really is a choice between child and career. For men, not so much.

The feminist movement was originally about creating equal opportunities for women. It has succeeded. The problem now is that the feminist movement has been hijacked by extremists who feel that their purpose in life is to enforce the equal distribution of all opportunities.

They want equal numbers of women as well as men in every position of importance. The fact of life is that the members of one gender or another are often more interested in a subject than the members of the other gender. Fewer women are interested in politics than men. Fewer women are interested in starting a business than men. Equal opportunities to go into politics or business are present for both genders, but the interest isn't equal and pressuring a company or a government into setting gender quotas simply lowers the level of competence.

I'm not saying that women lower the level of intelligence. Consider, for example, a magazine geared towards women and enforcing a gender quota there. The quality of the magazine would plummet.

It's not uncommon in big corporations for a guy to hear something like: "You were our best candidate by far. But I cannot promote you, because you're a guy and if I don't promote a woman, our company will appear to be sexist." Girl-only "empowerment" movements that fight against "dumb men who run the show" will promote this kind of mediocrity.

Another unintended result is the unfavorable depiction of men in media and advertising. The typical male in modern sitcoms is a dumb guy who likes tits and beer and whose wife is the responsible one. If the roles were reversed, feminists would storm the network building. Teachers say things like "wars happen because boys are aggressive" in kindergarten. When a small child is alone and crying in the middle of a street, every guy I know will cross the street so as to avoid the child. Reason being the stereotype that "men are molesters."

It's the guys that need help. They need positive role models in life. They need to know that the job of a father is not to grunt and drink beer all day. They need to know that they are valued. Boys need education that is geared more towards their needs.

Jane said...

OK, first, let me just say that I don't really want this blog to turn into a debate about gender roles and sexism, but I could not leave your comment here without at least attempting a response.

You say "there are fewer women with equal drive". First, I'd like to see some study to prove that, because it sounds more like a convenient excuse than a scientific statement. Second, assuming this is true, I'd encourage you to think about the reasons. For example, little girls tend to be praised and rewarded for being pretty and demure - by magazines, parents, teachers, TV etc. Boys tend to be rewarded for being aggressive and tough. So if there are fewer driven girls, could it be because they are continually discouraged from having drive?

You seem to have a problem with equal opportunities employment. It is there to safeguard against the human instinct to surround ourselves with people who are like us, whether that's the same sex, same religion, or the same race. When a boss says "You were the best candidate" part of that assessment is based upon subjective standards - it's easier for a man to envision another man following in his footsteps. You say it encourages mediocrity - I say it encourages diversity. Diversity and equality in business, politics, and entertainment encourages diversity and equality in the world at large. That's why I accept the fact that there are writing programs at almost all of the studios for 'diverse' candidates only. I don't qualify because I'm white. That's fine. That's fair. Sorry to say, but being white in a mostly white industry is an advantage. Just like being male in a mostly male industry.

TV men do tend to be portrayed poorly (though there are lots of exceptions!). Keep in mind that 75% of people who write these characters are men and almost all the people who sign off on the scripts are men, so what the heck is going on there? Could it be that men see themselves this way?

If this is true, the help men need is in adjusting to a new world order where equal opportunities do exist - and I'm sorry to say we are definitely not there yet. There are lots of places where girls are not even allowed to attend school, walk on their own, or speak to men that are not related to them. Conversely, it's not yet acceptable for a man to want to give up his career to raise his kids. That's gotta change, too.

Elver said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.